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IWW Practice-W Exercise Archives
Exercise: Memoir - I remember

These exercises were written by IWW members and administrators to provide structured practice opportunities for its members. You are welcome to use them for practice as well. Please mention that you found them at the Internet Writers Workshop (http://www.internetwritingworkshop.org/).

Prepared by:  Alice Folkart
Posted on: Dec. 21, 2008
Reposted on: July 25, 2010
Reposted on: July 1, 2012

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Exercise: In 400 words or less, write a first-person piece centering on a remembered person, event, or feeling.

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Your memoir doesn't have to be strictly true, but should be based on fact. You can 'embroider' or 'heighten' the event and characters. You could write from your own point of view, or from the point of view of someone else.

This kind of piece will be most successful when the author provides specific details, and makes good use of the narrator's senses of smell, taste, hearing, vision, and touch.

We see this sort of thing all the time in magazines and newspapers, so good ones are often highly publishable.

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Exercise: In 400 words or less, write a first-person piece centering on a remembered person, event, or feeling.

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In your critique, tell the author what's good about the sub, but then suggest ways in which it might be improved. Does the memory seem true to you? Why or why not? If characters are involved, are they well drawn? Is the setting handled well? Comment on any aspect of the writing that strikes you as needing to be done better.


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Modified by Gayle Surrette.