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"Your life is not a problem to be solved but a gift to be opened." ~ Wayne Muller

How to Write Inspirational Memoir (Giveaway!)

This week I’m excited to introduce you to writer and friend, Emily T. Wierenga. Emily is an award-winning journalist, blogger, commissioned artist and columnist, as well as the author of five books, including the memoir, Atlas Girl: Finding Home in the Last Place I Thought to Look (Baker Books). This recently released memoir is testament to the healing power of writing and I know you’ll enjoy what she has to say here about writing our stories.

Jeff Goins

You know the ones.

The stories that keep you up at night, the ones that have you dog-earing pages and weeping in the margins for all these characters have gone through and you want to sleep but you want to read, more, because here’s the thing: these people are real.

The ones you’re reading about, they’re flesh and blood, and besides a few name changes there’s not much fabricated because it’s a memoir.

But the best memoir isn’t just about real people; it’s about the art and the sanctity of storytelling.

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How Living By My Values Changed My Life


I was at the end of my emotional rope when I walked into the office of the man who was to become my counselor.

And he asked me about my core values.

After battling depression for almost a year, considering my values wasn’t a top priority; I was more concerned with making it through the day.

I was desperate, afraid and anxious and was allowing those feelings to define who I was. The line between my authentic self and the one I now believed myself to be was disturbingly blurred.

Values? I just wanted to feel better.

But during that initial session I learned something critical: my behaviour and feelings do not frame my identity. My core values do (tweet that!)« Continue »

When Words are Like Clanging Cymbals

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“Living has yet to be generally recognized as one of the arts.” ~Karl De Schweinitz I don’t think I’m a writer any more. When I feel sad or ponderous or have that one moment of ridiculous clarity, I don’t scamper helter-skelter for the computer like I once did. I don’t leave dinner to burn on [...]


In the Time We Have Left

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August 2003, my dad’s Parkinson’s disease was discovered. It’s been eleven years since the diagnosis, and time has both stretched out like a hot summer day and sped up like a ball down a hill, collecting speed as it charges onward. When it all first came about, I wrote pages and pages in neon-colored little [...]


Discover the Healing Power of Writing Your Story


For a long time I didn’t feel good about my story. My past followed me around like a pesky shadow I wanted to stomp away. An empty past with titles such as depressed and useless hanging over it. And even though I thought I had my past tightly locked away in the dusty closet of [...]


Why I Chose to Rise and Forgive

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The year I turned seven, my father, a government employee, was relocated to another town. Myself, my mother and my siblings stayed back home. I never really knew why, but I assumed it was because we were already settled into our home and the local schools. As kids, we weren’t prepared for this major upheaval in our [...]