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Writing Your Life: Putting Your Past on Paper Paperback – December 1, 1996


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks; First Edition edition (December 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380786257
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380786251
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.1 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #699,593 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Lou Willett Stanek, a novelist, critic, and teacher, practices what she preaches. She bases her workshops on the theory described in this book. Dr. Stanek earned a Ph.D. at the University of Chicago, an M.A. at Northwestern, and a B.A. from Eastern Illinois University. She also served as a trustee at Millikin University. A Midwesterner, Dr. Stanek now lives in New York and teaches writing at The New School of Social Research.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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See all 11 customer reviews
She gives the new writer a way to begin by writing a memoir.
Gloria E. Salavarria (skaggs@michiana.org)
Everybody has a story to tell, so get this book to get you thinking and preserving your life for you family, friends and future generations.
Don Edgers
I read her book all the way through without putting it down, it was so much fun dredging up memories.
Harvey L. Gardner (bbsco@earthlink.net)

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Harvey L. Gardner (bbsco@earthlink.net) on July 20, 1998
Format: Paperback
We all have memories of people, places, and events in our lives others would enjoy reading about. My problem all these years has been finding a starting place. Dr. Stanek solved the problem for me, and I recommend you let her solve it for you. I read her book all the way through without putting it down, it was so much fun dredging up memories. I have pages and pages of notes about people, places, things, pets, adventures, embarrassments, and other fun things to write about--all from reading this little book. I'm now starting over and doing her exercises. What fun! Your children and their children and their children will bless you for writing your life stories. And you'll feel good about yourself too. Read this book soon!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Gloria E. Salavarria (skaggs@michiana.org) on February 15, 1998
Format: Paperback
The first speech given by every novice before a Toastmasters's group is to talk about oneself. Having oneself as a topic is the easiest assignment, the perfect ice-breaker to help overcome first time jitters. The same can be said of the memoir. First time writers often don't know where, or how, to begin. As with all good teachers--Lou Willett Stanek gives the student/reader permission to begin. She eases the would-be writer through self-doubt. She explains the difference between autobiography and memoir. She gives the new writer a way to begin by writing a memoir. This book is a good place to start learning the joy of writing.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By ColorOrange on May 22, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I got my penny plus shipping/handling worth out of this book. While Dr. Stanek maybe wordy she is very creative with her word usage. I was able follow her except until I got to the end of chapter 17, I nearly forgot what she was talking about. She gave a lot of ideas often triggered my memory that I stopped reading to write.

I wouldn't consider this a reference book but one to provide inspiration and to get the juices flowing.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This small book was helpful and informative in writing my memoir. I will keep it for reference as it did have some good points in it. Easy reading.
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By Lorraine Sane on January 22, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I wanted this book to have more especially after reading the reviews.

It was good and yet at times too wordy. I wanted it to be more to the point and less about the author and her life experiences. The manner in which Dr. Stanek's own life was presented could have been less complicated. I did not care for how it was interwoven into the chapters. At times it lacked clarity.

The exercises were good but could have been better.

I have learned more about writing memoirs through reading them.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I would recommend this book to anyone who is in the process or thinking of writing his/her memoirs. Book arrived before promised and is in very good condition.
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