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How does one life affect other lives?


Sometimes it is through a book. A memoir or an autobiography gives you a chance to tell your story in your own words. Your book will tell more than anyone who knows you has ever known before. In your book you will connect events with your own interpretation of them. You will define what is important to you and explain many of the influences that make you who you are.

People who are no longer with us but who are still represented in our world by a book that recorded their lives, or their words and their actions still have the ability to influence and educate other people. Often the descriptions found in a biography reveal a lot about a particular time or culture that would be boring in another format.

Biographies, autobiographies and memoirs enlarge our community of known individuals. You have never met Benjamin Franklin, but if you read a biography about him, you will know more about him than most of his neighbors, or his family, or possibly even his wife. His life can affect yours through the magic of the written word. Biographies, autobiographies and memoirs can be powerful books.


Pay attention to the tense of your verbs. Past is past and the present is the present and the future is to be reserved for things that haven’t happened yet. Often when we remember things we speak or write as if they are happening right now. If we then revert to past tense, we will confuse the listener/reader.

Edit, Edit, Edit! Our lives are filled with so much, more than a single book can easily contain. Unless you carefully consider which information is the most important, your book will lose focus and become unwieldy.

Include photos when you can; they add life and clarity to your descriptions. Scan them at 300 dpi, at least. If they are poor photos consider purchasing color correction or enhancement services by someone skilled in Photoshop.