Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Memoir Revolution: A Social Shift that Uses Your Story to Heal, Connect, and Inspire Paperback – April 9, 2013
|New from||Used from|
Up to 50% off select Non-Fiction books
Featured titles are up to 50% off for a limited time. See all titles
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
From the Author
When I attended my first memoir writing class in the summer of 2004, I quickly realized I wasn't alone. Many others were reviewing their memories in search of interesting stories. To learn more, I began reading memoirs, many by authors whose main claim to fame was that they had taken the time to turn their lives into stories.
Each book offered a rich, generous window into the author's life. To organize my thoughts and share them, I posted essays on my blog. Again, I found I wasn't alone. Through the Internet, I started corresponding with other memoir bloggers and then with memoir writers. We were forming online communities!
I began teaching workshops where I introduced students to techniques for finding their own narratives. Once they realized they could translate the chaos of memories into the order of stories, they expressed their appreciation. Their excitement added to mine.
In 2008, a book publisher heard me speak and said I ought to write about my big ideas. "What big ideas?" I asked. "You know. What you've been saying about the importance of memoirs for individuals and society."
At first I resisted the suggestion. I have always been addicted to ideas, and thought that finally in my later life, I was ready to replace analytical thoughts with lyrical ones. However, I couldn't resist the challenge. I thought that perhaps I could achieve both goals. I would try to turn my ideas about memoirs into a good story.
To illustrate my observations, I provided specific examples from my growing shelf of memoirs. I soon realized I was writing a book about books. This turned out to be one of the biggest ideas of all. In our literate society, we learn so much about life from the writings that have been recorded before us. As memoir writers ourselves we pass along what we have learned to the next generation.
After five years of reading, interviewing, writing and revising, my editors reassured me that the book was ready. In 2013, I published the Memoir Revolution: A Social Shift that Uses Your Story to Heal, Connect, and Inspire. In the book, I explore the current interest in memoirs: where it came from, why it is having such a profound influence on readers and writers, what I have learned from it and what you can too.
One reason I felt so compelled to write the book was because of my belief that writing a memoir can be a powerful aid to self-understanding. Turning life into story moves events from their haphazard storage in memory back into a sequence. We see the scenes more clearly, and by finding the narrative that links them, we understand ourselves in a new light.
Unlike more isolated forms of introspection such as therapy and journaling, this one reaches outward. From the time you share a few anecdotes with fellow writers, you begin to see yourself the way others have seen you, providing an almost magical amalgamation of self and society.
When I was growing up in the sixties, I looked for my truth in the stories popular among young intellectuals. Authors like Franz Kafka, Joseph Heller, Samuel Beckett, and Albert Camus convinced me that life is meaningless. Their powerful literary works helped me dismantle my trust in the world, and without trust, I sank.
Now in the 21st century, memoirs offer a more healing collection of stories that weave the good and the bad in life into a purposeful narrative. Instead of undermining readers with disturbing twists of irony and dystopia, modern memoir authors shape real life, with its cruelties, vagaries and victories into an orderly container as ancient as civilization itself.
The bestselling authors in the front lines of the Memoir Revolution taught us about this healing potential of life stories. By sharing the psychological influences that shaped them Tobias Wolff (This Boy's Life), Frank McCourt (Angela's Ashes) and Jeannette Walls (Glass Castle) gave the rest of us license to explore our own. Like published authors who have worked long and hard to discover the purpose and character arc of their protagonist, we aspiring memoir writers strive to find the same driving forces within our own lives.
Memoir-lovers in my experience intuitively recognize the potential that this genre has for healing us individually and collectively. My book, Memoir Revolution, backs up these intuitive views with research and examples about how the cultural passion for life stories serves us all.
About the Author
If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle Edition for FREE. Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.
For thousands of qualifying books, your past, present, and future print-edition purchases now lets you buy the Kindle edition for $2.99 or less. (Textbooks available for $9.99 or less.)
Top Customer Reviews
Throughout the book, he draws upon the hundred plus memoirs he has read, analyzed, and discussed on his blog to illustrate points about memoir structure and its healing value for individuals. He builds on this base to demonstrate how memoir is not only helping individuals find deeper meaning, it's developing bonds between people of diverse backgrounds. As we read each others stories, we discover that across the boundaries of culture, nationality, and personal preferences we all want and feel similar things. We are more alike than not. While many other forces seem to be pulling people apart, creating a sense of alienation and isolation, memoir has the opposite effect, pulling the world together, one story at a time.
I guarantee that you'll have at least twenty books on your "gotta read" list when you finish The Memoir Revolution. By making it the first book on your list, you'll appreciate the following ones far more, and you'll certainly be infected with Waxler's passion for memoir.
Coining the term, "Memoir Revolution," he shows us through his own story of personal transformation as well as through his review of many memoirs, how sharing our stories draws us into a global community and breaks down barriers. Jerry delivers a fascinating and inspirational message that inviting others into our personal stories through memoir can be transformational for both the individual and the world we live in. In a rallying cry for memoir writers, he says:
"When I looked for teachers, I found them everywhere. I learned from literature professors, therapists and creative-writing teachers. Above all, I reached out across the bridges that memoir writers had created from their lives to mine. Together, we were transforming our search for truth from a private to a public experience. By reading and writing together, our loosely knit groups fostered deeper appreciation for the power of Story within our own lives."
He draws us in through his personal coming-of-age stories as well as from his indepth reviews of a wide variety of memoirs presented on his blog, Memoir Writer's Network. I highly recommend this groundbreaking, thought-provoking and well-researched memoir which captures Jerry's passion for the genre and lights the way for all who aspire to write our own memoirs.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It's an interesting read and a good reference for people wanting to write their memoirs. I recommend it.Published 15 months ago by Marilyn R. Carrier
It’s rare for me to pick up a book and not be able to put it down. I’ve come close a couple of times when reading a true crime story, but never when reading a book about writing... Read morePublished 17 months ago by Viga Boland, author No Tears for my Father
Many of you know I enjoy doing book reviews for other authors. There is a double positive to doing this. Read morePublished 20 months ago by Lisa
As a memoir writer, teacher, and journalist, I found this book to be sheer gold. Jerry Waxler, who is a new author to me, has done a scrupulous and fascinating job of explaining... Read morePublished 22 months ago by Lorraine Ash
Jerry Waxler's lifelong study of memoir is well presented in Memoir Revolution. Writers first considering embarking on a journey to write their own memoirs will find this resource... Read morePublished 23 months ago by Tara Meissner
Memoir Revolution is inspirational and instructive, reflecting Waxler’s extensive training and experience. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Gladys Carson (Dallas, Texas)
I have always believed that we are all connected through our emotions, experiences and the choices we make throughout life. Read morePublished on July 20, 2014 by Cyrus Webb
In memoir revolution Jerry Waxler traces his Memoir as a distinct genre. Through his own peronal story, his history, psychology, social issues and the human condition. Read morePublished on July 17, 2014 by lady g
Great read especially for someone who is beginning to write a memoir.Published on July 13, 2014 by Amazon Customer