The easy way to write your life story – a Step by Step Guide
Why write your life story?
Many of us have said – “One day I’m going to write my story,” and that one day gets pushed back. We make our excuses, “I’m too busy,” “It’s too hard,” “My life isn’t that interesting.”
Many of us have lost loved ones too soon and sometimes with no time to say goodbye. What’s left are memories that in time may fade or be forgotten forever.
That ‘One Day’, can’t wait. Make sure it doesn’t become a day too late!
Writing your life story will record your memories, thoughts, life history, experiences, and adventures. The much repeated and sometimes embarrassing, yet funny stories. The joy and laughter that you shared with your friends and family. It will give your loved ones the gift of you. It will also help your descendants down the generations when they are tracing their family tree!
‘In My Own Words – is a cost effective and easy way to write your Life Story. It will be a lasting legacy for you and your loved ones capturing those wonderful memories forever.
How does the step by step guide work?
With a set of researched, tried and tested questions, this book will help you write your life story in an easy and enjoyable way.
Each chapter contains a set of questions to prompt you to think about each stage of your life from childhood to present day. There is no ‘right way’ to complete your book and so use these questions as a way of sparking ideas on what to write and to tease out your memories.
Each question is based on research that we’ve completed giving us the most likely and most commonly asked questions to aid your writing journey. Some questions will spark your memories more than others and the aim is that once you start reading through, you will have enough prompts to kick-start your writing. You may also think of questions of your own that have not been asked that you want to add in to answer.
What’s the best way to complete the book?
Our advice is to grab yourself a notebook, a pen and your favourite drink and start by reading through each question and scribbling down ideas first. It’s a bit like when we were at school doing our homework. There was (or should have been), a rough draft! Once you are happy with what you have written in your rough draft use what you have scribbled down to write it in the book. If you want to then have those words turned into a fully edited and typeset book, we’d be happy to help you make that happen. Get in touch at Mandy@tbwr.co.uk or firstname.lastname@example.org
Your Life Story – is not a journey to take alone
Our research has shown that writing your Life Story is a family project. It’s best completed by you but with the help and input of your family and friends. A grandfather who started writing his life story was inspired to continue writing as every Sunday at dinner, his children and grandchildren would ask how it was coming along. He’d update the family on how he far he’d got and they would all start chipping in with memories, some of which he’d remembered, many that he’d forgotten. Having his family ask ‘How’s it going Grandad?’ when he’d found it a challenge to keep going, was enough to spur him on to continue. His family are forever grateful to have been involved in helping their much-loved Grandad write his story for them to enjoy and for future generations to come.
We encourage everyone who wants to complete their life story to share what they are doing with family and friends so that the ‘collective’ memories and history are included in the book.
Bio Data – for those who want to trace a family tree
We encourage everyone who completes the book to add in their personal details, including the bio-data of their own parents and siblings. We’ve not included a copy of this form in the book as it’s personal data that should be stored carefully, but it’s an important aspect of writing your life story and allowing your ancestors to learn all about your family history.
Whilst you may get ideas, memories and funny stories from your family and friends, the job of writing the book will fall to you. It may be a daunting prospect. The challenge may be made easier by joining others who are embarking on the same journey, That’s why we’ve created a ‘Write Together’ group that meets every Sunday (UK time), at 10 am so that we can all ‘Write Together’.
The aim is to provide support, advice, encouragement and accountability. We only focus on writing. No harsh feedback, no criticism, only support and someone else to write with in a safe space and to spur you on, with the company of others, just like you.
How does ‘Write Together’ work?
If you are writing your Life Story – using our ‘In My Own Words’ book – we work through each Chapter, step by step, week by week, answering the questions as we go. An hour and a half of your time, is dedicated to your Life Story. You can spend time in between each ‘Write Together’ session, to think about what you might want to write next time. If you’d like some 1:1 coaching on your writing, we can offer that too. Please e-mail Mandy@tbwr.co.uk
(If you’d like to buy a copy of the In My Own Words book when it’s ready to buy – please message us here and we’ll add you to our e-mail list – we promise not to spam you – click here)
What happens in a ‘Write Together’ session?
10 am start – 15 mins for intros and to ask questions
10.15 – 11.15 – 1 hour writing time – Writing time – pen to paper, hands to keyboard*, camera on, mic off – (this will stop distractions and provide us all with the accountability we all need).
11.15 am – 15 15-minute follow up – to ask questions and to set a goal for next week
Online – via Zoom –e-mail email@example.com if you’d like to join in.
Cost – no fee for the first 20 who join us – thereafter there’ll be a small charge per week. We’d love it if you bought one of our books, leave us a nice review online or drop us an encouraging and positive e-mail for us to able to share on our socials (with your permission).
Finally – writing our own Life Story is something we should and must do. We never know how long we’ve got and whilst most of us live in the ‘moment’, we never know how many more moments we have left.
Knowing little about our own parents and grandparents or having lost friends and loved ones too soon – imagine having a copy of their ‘In My Own Words’ to bring comfort, joy and all of those happy memories back?
It will help keep your loved ones close and in turn, you will be able to do the same for your family, friends and your descendents.
‘In My Own Words’ – It’s your life story, your memories, your legacy.
* There is an app called ‘Otter.ai’ that you can talk into, that will type your words for you if you prefer not to hand-write or type.
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