Memoir Writing Workshops

Vol. XVI No. 1 - SPRING 2005

By: Kathy Gemperle

We are happy to have had Karen Delaney direct our first memoir writing workshops at the Edgewater Historical Society Museum. Karen lives in our community and directs a writing program at the Edgewater Library called “Writers at Heart.” She is also a professional writing teacher who teaches at Kennedy-King City College.

In our workshop, Karen discussed the parameters of memoir writing. She coached us on being reflective and positive in telling stories from our past. The assembled group were not experienced writers, but it seemed that all had a story to tell.

With coffee and refreshments available, we began our first writing assignment - to “write about a special place.” After a short period of quiet time, we had each produced something that was focused and reflective.

For some the next step was a surprise - we were asked to read our writing to the group. This turned out to be even more fascinating, as each person shared a bit of themselves in the paragraphs they had written. All were enthusiastic at the close of the first session and many have signed up for more.

We hope to continue the memoir writing sessions in the future, but have not determined the schedule. This series will meet two more times on April 16 and 30.