Senin, 28 Agustus 2017

Two Powerful Writing Insights From a Stimulating Writing Bush Camp That You Can Use

So there I was at the writing boot camp on the grassy calm and tranquil foothills of the majestic Mount Kenya - the second highest mountain in Africa. This is the country of Kenya! And I was invited to have a "conversational workshop with the young East African writers".

Though I am a South African by birth but I have spent considerable times in East Africa, in particular the countries of Tanzania and Kenya. In one of those times in 2006, August to be precise, I met and personally conversed with President Barack Obama. He was in Kenya to deliver a lecture on Effective Global Leadership - Moving the World Forward. That was one of those visits President Barack Obama made to Kenya. The first of these visits was back in 1986 while he was a young innovative community organizer in the South Side of Chicago.

At the boot camp my purpose was to centrally focus my "conversational workshop" on biography and memoir writing. After all I was invited to the boot camp because I recently wrote a book on the story of President Barack Obama. So I thought it will be worthwhile and beneficial to the delegates to pitch the workshop at the practical level giving practical insights and personal perspectives of the process I followed myself when writing the book for the whole period of 4 years.

I discussed and engaged the boot camp participants about a lot of things covering a wider field. But there were two key central practical lessons that I made sure that the participants take from the boot camp into their consciousness.

The first key practical lesson was to expound on the difference between a biography and a memoir. The two are related but distinct. To be sure and to use my own common sense and discrimination I expounded that a biography is the essentials about a person - the distilled virtues of a person and how can others learn from it. Like the book I recently wrote about President Barack Obama Moving Forward: The President Making a Better America and the World the main purpose of the book is to provide a concise comprehensive constructive account of President Barack Obama's diverse and wide ranging life story that effectively condenses into his Moving Forward Vision for America and the World. In the book many things have been omitted, compressed and telescoped. No book can be all-inclusive. This was a particular special story on President Barack Obama that I chose to tell. My presuppositions and my sympathies colored my choice and text.

Generally speaking, reading a biography the reader should aim off for the breeze: take what he or she wants, leave or adjust the rest. The reader must not accept, but must be critical and question. The biography writer is not the person who knows but a professional who conduct research, focus and interpret the facts. And all interpretations are a matter of discrimination and prejudice colored by the biographer's outlook.

A biography differs from a memoir because a memoir is the most intimate and private of the two. It is a mere presentation. It is full of innermost personal thoughts and feelings, raw as they are - without going into labor for perspectives and context as the biographer might seek to do.

The second key practical lesson I wanted the boot camp participants to get was that people - or readers, their senses are naturally wired to the present times. People's feelings are attuned on present time, not the past or the future. During the writing process even though the writing might be historical or futuristic it must also be contextualized into the present times.

The present times must find itself in the history or the future the author is writing about. Writing history or biography or writing about the future is not a sum but a synthesis, one that goes on changing and accruing even while observed. The past, writes the French historian Marc LĂ©opold Benjamin Bloch, is by definition a fact that nothing can modify, but the knowledge of the past is a thing in process which changes and progresses as people progresses.

Chris Kanyane is the author of Moving Forward!

My personality and perspectives is inspired by the 18th century French Philosopher Jean Jacques Rousseau. It was Rousseau who provided Europe with slogans for return to nature during the times of the industrial revolution when everybody was excited about machines and the power of them.

Rousseau argued for a shift from reliance on the head, (that is reason) to a shift to the heart and pure nature and the simple life.

Rousseau called for the human beings that are genuine in a genuine world. He advocated and kindled a novel appreciation of natural beauty, wild life, forests, landscapes, mountains and valleys. Natural life, argued Rousseau, is spiritually fulfilling, enchanting and cultivating people.

Sabtu, 12 Agustus 2017

Public Speaking - Author Biographies to Get Speaking Engagements

First, write the book. Second, sell the book. In most cases, however, before you can sell your book, you must sell yourself.

Speaking engagements on your book in the forms of book signings, seminars or events are important components to help you sell yourself and your book. However, before you can get those speaking engagements to sell your book, you must provide potential audiences with your author biography, a one-page summary of your writing career or the part of your writing career that relates to your book.

Limit your author biography to one page. People do not have the time or energy to review lengthy profiles with details that are not pertinent to your book. Moreover, long author biographies tend to list every tiny accomplishment and have been known to include made up or exaggerated credentials. Tell the truth and keep the truth short. Stick to the facts about your writing and speaking career. Although some authorities say it is all right to include a personal note to show readers that you are a real person, I suggest an economy of words and an omission of emotions. Do not bog down in your dreams. No one really cares about your dreams but you and your family and friends.

Approach your author biography as if you are writing about someone else, meaning, write in the third person. It is easier to brag in the third person. First person author biographies and resume formats are not considered professional and mark you as an amateur in the business.

Sell yourself to the prospective audience in your introduction, which states your name and your professional handles such as published author, journal contributor, e-book author, magazine writer or writing coach, for example. Focus on professional titles and stay away from personal categories such as wife of, husband of, homemaker, mommy, daddy or uncle or nanny, unless they enhance your career description or credential as an author.

This is how I introduce myself: Sunny Nash is an award-winning writer, photographer, producer and author of Bigmama Didn't Shop At Woolworth's, a memoir told from the perspective of a black child growing up in the mid-century American South, describing discrimination, sit-ins, boycotts, riots, police brutality and personal triumph.

After introducing yourself, the key component of your author biography is a description of the book that you are seeking to present. The description should be a powerful, short, self-contained statement about your book. Remember, this statement is not a review or an evaluation or an excerpt. The statement is a description that should leave the reader wanting to know more and to hire you to speak about the book. Dedicate one paragraph of your author biography to this summary. Here is a sample of how I describe my book: A collection of nonfiction essays about life with her grandmother, Bigmama, during the civil rights era, Nash recalls the U.S. Supreme Court 1954 decision, Brown v. the Board of Education, and the civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Before Nash's book was published by Texas A&M University Press, her syndicated column had earned her prestige and attention as a writer. She is working on her second book for this publisher.

Personal experience, interviews and research gave me the authority to write and speak on my subject. Demonstrate your authority even if you write fiction. To support your credibility, include a mention of previously published work, speaking engaghere.ements, television show appearances, writing awards and your website. You don't have a website? Get one and learn how to use search engine optimization tools to get people there. To publicize your website, write an internet press release to distribute online.

If you do not belong to any on-line or community or other writing groups, join one today! Not only are professional writing groups helpful in your endeavors, they look great on the author biography. Pay some dues and get listed in writing directories to increase trust and respect from potential audiences.

When seeking to be booked to speak about your book, be sure to include all necessary contact information, including your website. If your website or any other part of your contract information changes, update them immediately. Do you know what happens when people can't find you? Your author biography along with your entire press kit gets tossed into the trash.

Kamis, 27 Juli 2017

Biography and Memoirs - Depiction of the Personal and the Professional Sides

Biography and autobiography are probably the best literary forms that attract amateurs into the literary field. The best part is that biography writing does not require prior experience unlike arts and crafts as it involves personal experiences that the writer think are worth sharing with the readers.

Biographies are of different types including memoirs and journals. Biography is a description of someone's life and experiences. It can be published in the form of a book, a film or in some cases a collection of books. A biography would sketch out the personal details and experiences in an elaborate manner and might also include the analysis of the personality of the author. Though biographies are non fictional woks that are based on truthful facts, fiction also can be used to portray the life and experiences of the subject.

In the early middle ages, there was a sharp decline in the awareness of the classic European culture. During this period the only sources of information were the biographies written by monks and hermits, though the subjects were largely confined to the church fathers and popes. These were basically intended to enhance the interest in Christianity among the general public and were used as tool for conversion into Christianity.

Memoirs though form a division of autobiography differ in their style and structure. It is more focused that an autobiography and the chronological freedom gives its more flexibility. Memoirs are written by politicians, film stars, military leaders and businessmen and these typically focus on the career and professional lives of the subjects rather than their personal lives unlike an autobiography. Like most autobiographies, memoirs are also written from a first person's perspective.

Memoirs can be written for legacy or recreational purposes and are often assisted by genealogists, or even by ghostwriters. Historically, memoirs have focused on public matters, rather than personal, and in many cases; the readers might not even get any information even about the writer as the memoir would be dealing with other people and incidents that happened in their lives. However in many cases, the content of the memoirs might not be 100% true. While writing memoirs, many writers opt to leave out the bad experiences totally and focus only on the good, which makes it less credible.

Sabtu, 08 Juli 2017

Four Simple Basic Factors to Consider When Writing a Memoir or Biography

In this article I would like to share with you four key attributes to consider when writing a memoir or biography. By the virtue of you being a human being, you are qualified to write a memoir or biography. So let us get on with these four attributes:

A memoir or biography should come from the position of truth. It should be absolute truth. Spinoza's famous words apply in force here. Verum est index sui et falsi ('truth is the index both of itself and of falsehood'). This means by telling sticking with the truth you reveal lies.

The next two attributes coming up after being truthful is "sine ira et studio;" do justice to every person and event; and stand in the centre of human society, where you may be able to see all points in the circumference objectively. It is about connections in both ways. In the first instance memoir and biography writing is about connection with the person being written about and secondly connection with the reader. As a memoir writer you should join with the life of the person you are writing about - even if the person has passed on - become part of his or her life, the mindset and life's epochs. Okay - sympathy may be too much to ask, but empathy is essential, not just looking at issues and events in the person's life but feeling with times, the people around and the ideas she or he projected - and be careful of taking things out of contexts and thereby presenting a false projection. People and events should not be just relayed, in every situation the biographer must provide the reader with his or her understanding of the situation.

So there you have three key attributes about writing a memoir or biography; first your memoir or biography should come from the position of absolute truth, second you should do justice to every person or event involved, and third you should connect with your subject and the reader.

Further than these three attributes, there is the fourth one; and that is: the biographer and memoir writer should like the sun, both reveal and enlighten all that is dark. The memoir or biography should be enlightening and shed life about person being written about. You should be able to place events and issues in perspective and in the context they emerged while presenting them in the manner that will be lively and helping to the reader - that is getting the reader involved in the process. It is not that difficult; just put yourself in the mood where you will be able to hear your feelings, once you hear them pick up the pen and write. The point is not to be wholly right, for being wholly your efforts will be lifeless and un-enjoyable to the reader.

Kamis, 29 Juni 2017

Memoir Writing - Four Tips on How to Improve Your Writing by Reading

Familiarity with other writers can teach you a lot about effective writing techniques as you develop your own style. Reading good memoirs will help you to write a good memoir. As children, we learned by imitation--it's still a key strategy for adults as we practice the skills we need to master. Reading others' memoirs is an essential first step in writing your own.

1) In general, read widely and voluminously. In particular, read memoirs, autobiographies, and biographies. Read not just books but periodicals.

2) Read as a writer--i.e., study how others have handled their stories. What can you repeat--or use as inspiration? How do the writers introduce their characters and their action? How do they develop the conflicts that make up the action of their stories? Have they used the technique of suspense? Have they started close enough to the final crisis or climax? What are the turning points of their stories and how are the conflicts resolved? Have they used specific and striking details in describing characters, actions and settings? Is point of view used effectively? Is the tone in each story appropriate for its theme? Is the theme presented without preachiness? How are unpleasant truths handled? How have the authors ended their stories? How do these writers handle transitions from one segment (or one story) to another?

3) Reading beyond technical matters, study how others have dealt with stories whose topics or themes are similar to yours. Which effective elements in these stories can you include in your own? What fresh perspectives does this create for you?

4) Certainly, at the very least, reading memoirs will jog your memory and give you an expanded sense of possibilities. Don't forget: the more you know, the more detailed the background of your writing will be and the fuller your stories.

Sabtu, 10 Juni 2017

Memoir Writing Service - Simplify the Task of Writing Your Biography

Writing a memoir can be a gratifying experience for any person. It offers time to reflect back on life from a different perspective, but while it can be a positive experience, it can also be a challenge. The task can be simplified by hiring a reliable memoir writing service. This puts professionals with the necessary skills and expertise at your disposal.

Benefits of Writing Memoir
• Writing biographies can make people look at themselves in a different light altogether. They might even learn a few things about themselves which they might not have realized in the past.
• Memoirs can be preserved for ages, and the legacy becomes immortal for future generations.
• Memoirs are positive form of recollection that can be cherished for a long time to come.
• It becomes a family heirloom, and helps preserve family history for future.
• It can be inspirational to others.
• Self-discipline can be developed during the writing process.
• Writing biographies can be therapeutic, as they can be also considered as excellent source for emotional cleansing because as the project progresses, the person will go through plenty of deep introspections. It may even give power to people to overcome an addiction and reinforce their recovery.
• If through the writing process people recognize their mistakes, they can steer clear from making similar errors in future.
• After the memoir is published, you may get thousands of e-mails appreciating your book. It can create an empowering positive impact on your life.
• You can become a celebrity overnight with book signing schedules, television interviews and journal interviewers calling for dates.

If a person does not feel competent in presenting their personal memoir, they can hire a professional ghostwriter who specializes in and offers a memoir writing service.

What Is a Ghostwriter?
Ghostwriters are professional writers, who help create documents and write-ups. However, the ghostwriter's name does not appear in the credits. The book or the content will be published under your name. Once the project gets completed, ghostwriters cannot claim ownership of the book or document.

The credited author offers the key theme, but usually the appointed ghostwriter does the majority of the writing. Politicians and celebrities frequently hire ghostwriters for developing autobiographies, scripts, and screenplays.

If you wish to pen your life story, but don't have the time or expertise to do it, then hiring a ghostwriter who offers memoir writing service is an excellent way to get the job done. These professionals provide specialized writing services at affordable rates.

Communicating with ghostwriters can be discomforting for some, because it requires sharing of personal life details with unknown people. Even the task of looking for a ghostwriter can be a daunting job for some, but it has become easier with the Internet. Many firms offer professional memoir writing services. Request samples of previous projects for an objective look at their writing styles and skills.