Do you have a story to tell? Whether it’s about your life as a whole or a specific event that stands out in your memory, writing a memoir can be a rewarding experience. It can also be difficult to know where to start. We’ve put together this list of 78 memoir ideas to help get you started.
78 Memoir Ideas
- Write a memoir about your first day of middle school.
- Write about how you met your best friend.
- Write down the funniest memory of your life story.
- Write about the first time you got sick as an adult and had to take care of yourself.
- Write about how your grandmother’s love of gardening inspired you to start a garden of your own.
- Tell the story of the first time you went to a friend’s house.
- A story about a pet or animal from your childhood.
- Write about your time as a child when you were a loner and how that affected your later life.
- Write about a time when you felt like a failure, but then something great happened that changed your mind about that failure lasting.
- Tell the story about your favorite toy when you were little.
- Tell about your favorite meal or food you ate as a child.
- Write about your first love and how your relationship ended.
- Write about your parents’ relationship and how it affected you as a child.
- Write about the time your parents divorced.
- Write about what it was like to be raised by only one parent (or what family dynamic is most important to your life).
- Tell about where you went on vacation with your family when you were little or a young adult.
- Tell who taught you to ride a bike, roller skate, etc. and how old you were when you first did it.
- Tell the story about your favorite piece of clothing from your childhood (e.g., “the shirt my grandma gave me”).
- Tell the story about something that happened in high school (e.g., “the time someone played a prank on me in gym class”).
- Tell the story about how you were bullied as a child.
- Write about the worst thing that happened to you as an adult, such as getting fired or having someone close to you cheat on you, and how it changed who you’re today and how others see/treat you because of those experiences (or lack thereof).
- Write about a time when you didn’t get something you wanted.
- Write about a time when you got everything you wanted.
- Write about the best thing that happened to you on vacation.
- Tell about the time you felt like a failure because of someone else’s success.
- Write about your first kiss.
- Write about the day you got your first job.
- Write about how you left your first job.
- Write about your first car.
- Write about the time you changed jobs or experienced a big change in your life.
- Write a personal memoir about an important historical event (e.g., 9/11).
- Write a memory about moving from one place to another and discovering what was there before you arrived.
- Write about the first time you felt completely alone or lost (and how that changed over time).
- Write about how a major technological change affected you as a child/teenager/young adult (and how it still affects you today).
- Write about how a particular song helped you through a difficult time.
- Write about a trip abroad that changed everything for you (or nothing at all).
- Write about how your parents had you as a teenager and how you eventually became a parent yourself.
- Write about how your heart was broken and you’d to learn to trust again.
- Tell your family history.
- Describe what it was like for your family to immigrate to America from another country and how it affected them to grow up here in America!
- Describe your spiritual journey from your youth to today.
- Tell how an event made you who you’re today – a breakup, graduation, etc., but from the perspective of what’s happened since then (what’s changed in your life as a result of that event?).
- Write a memory of the first time you drank alcohol.
- Write a memory of growing up with a sibling whose personality was very different from yours.
- Write an account of losing someone close to you through death or separation.
- Write an account of an argument with someone close to you that changed your view of them forever (or vice versa).
- Write about the first time you got sick – the symptoms, how long it lasted, and what it was like to have a loved one take care of you during that time (this can also be written from their point of view).
- Write about the person who had the biggest impact on you.
- Write about the most embarrassing moment of your life.
- Write about a time when you wanted to give up but didn’t and how that changed your life for the better.
- Write about a time when you were really scared.
- Write about your worst day at work.
- Write about a time when you were proud of yourself.
- Write about a time when you felt the world was against you and how you overcame that feeling and came out victorious!
- Write about the best gift you ever received.
- Write about your favorite thing to do on Christmas Eve/day as a child/teen/young adult (or as an adult).
- Write down what you missed most about your childhood (e.g., playing outside, staying up late).
- Write down the first time you got in trouble at middle school.
- Describe the first time you felt brave.
- Tell the true story of how you met your partner.
- Write about the first time you felt like you were the center of attention.
- Write about the first time you felt like an adult.
- Tell a story about the most important thing someone taught you (not just parents/siblings/guardians).
- Write about the best birthday party or event from your childhood.
- Describe what’s the best thing about living in your hometown.
- Write about how you learned an instrument or other important skill.
- Tell the story of how you rediscovered an old hobby or interest that was important to you as a child but was lost over time (or vice versa).
- Write down the true story of how someone helped you when you needed it most.
- Write about the strangest thing I’ve ever eaten.
- Write about when you found your true passion in life.
- Write about the first time you went to summer camp as a kid.
- Write about the first time you saw your favorite band in concert.
- Write about the one thing that changed your life forever.
- Write about your most memorable day in middle school.
- Tell the story of how you became a parent and how that changed your life forever.
- Write about series or movies that most influenced you during your childhood.
- Describe your most memorable teacher.
- Explain how your political beliefs have changed since you were a teenager.
Personal Benefits of Writing a Personal Memoir
Memoir writing is a great way to get in touch with your past and be inspired by it. There are many benefits to writing a memoir, including:
- Writing your memoir helps you reflect on your life and think about the choices you’ve made. This is a good exercise for anyone who wants to make better choices in the future.
- It allows you to share your story with others, which can be an important part of healing from trauma or adversity you’ve experienced.
- It allows you to reconnect with old friends and family members who may not have been there at some important moments in your life.
- It helps you learn more about yourself and recognize positive qualities that you may have suppressed for years due to mental illness or other issues that affect people from time to time.
Challenges of the Writing Process
The first challenge of writing a memoir is that it can be difficult to finish. Memoir writing is different from fiction creative writing in that it’s not just a story, it’s an account of your life, and that can be overwhelming for some writers.
The second challenge is that you may not have the time or energy to write as much as you’d like. You may also feel pressured by family and friends who want to read your story.
The third challenge is that it can be difficult to find the right publisher for your work. There are many publishers, but which one will publish your book? And even if they do publish your book, there’s no guarantee they’ll sell enough copies to make you rich!
While these challenges may seem daunting, they don’t have to stop you from writing your memoir. All you need is a little determination and perseverance – but if you don’t feel like writing, then writing may not be for you!
The Best Thing About Writing a Memoir
A memoir is a book about your life. They can range from childhood to young adulthood to old age. Great memoirs are often written by famous people, but also by ordinary people like you and me.
The best thing about writing a great memoir is that it’s your life experience story and you can do whatever you want with it. You can combine stories from different periods of your life or tell the story of a single year of your life. You can decide what to include and what to leave out. You’re free to tell the truth about yourself or not. It’s up to you!
Another benefit of writing a memoir is that it forces you to think about your life. Even if you only write about one year in your life, you’ll have ended up learning so much about yourself and how life events affect us as people.
Where Should Memoirs Begin?
A memoir is a story about your life. They can range from your childhood to your adult life and can be as long or short as you want. Memoirs can be fictional or non-fictional and written in any style.
There are many ways you can begin your autobiography, but one of the best is to start with an anecdote or scene that grabs the reader’s attention. If your story starts with something funny or shocking, that can work well too.
Another way to begin your story is to introduce yourself and explain why you’re writing this book now. You can also write about your personal experience or how it came to be. For example, if you just moved away from home after graduating high school, explain what happened in your life during that time and how it affected you emotionally.
How to End Your Autobiography
The end of your memoir is just as important as the beginning. If you don’t have an ending, you run the risk of losing readers and making it harder for them to remember what they read. Also, they’ll likely be dissatisfied with what they experienced while reading your work.
Here are some tips on how to write a good conclusion:
- Make sure it ties back to the beginning of your story. You don’t want your readers to have questions about how it all started or why they should care about what happens next. If you don’t resolve something, it could confuse people or make them think the story is still going on, but it’s not.
- Make sure your ending is related to the memoir topic. If your memoir has a central message or theme that runs throughout the story, you should mention it at least once in the last one or two (or three!) chapters. This helps reinforce what readers have learned from reading your story and gives them something to think about after reading.
- Leave room for interpretation and imagination by leaving out details or using images instead of concrete descriptions when describing life events or feelings at the time. You want readers of your book to feel like they know you well enough to understand how you felt at certain times during these experiences. You don’t want them to feel like they need more outside information but to be able to empathize with the situation and relate it to their own lives.
Publishing Your Memoir
Once you’ve decided to publish your memoir, you’ll need to submit a book proposal. This will convince potential publishers that your narrative is worth telling.
Before submitting your book proposal, you should consult with an attorney who specializes in publishing law. He or she can advise you on whether there are any legal problems with your book proposal, such as libel or invasion of privacy, and can advise you on the possible consequences of publishing your personal narrative. For example, if you’re writing about someone who’s deceased but whose family is still alive, the publisher may ask their permission before publishing the book. This may need to be included in the contract between the author and publisher.
Once you’ve consulted an attorney and determined that publishing your memoir is legally safe, you should hire an editor who specializes in nonfiction or at least has experience with nonfiction. An editor can help you polish your manuscript so that it flows better from beginning to end and can be understood by readers who’ve not experienced what you’ve.