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Memoir Writing

As you probably already know, I’m teaching a memoir class this month. I’d like to share some of the information from that class with youl

We are focusing on creating a theme for your memoir. Not all memoirs have themes, but many that are published to have one.

Your stories are like pearls and the theme provides the string that holds them together. One option that people use when writing memoir is to structure the content around a theme.

Theme provides: development of an idea, conceptual coherence, a guide for what to include in your story and what to leave out.

The biggest problem in writing a memoir is that you know every detail of your life – what happened to you, around you, how you felt or reacted, things you’ve accomplished, where you’ve failed and where you’ve triumphed. You know what you’ve overcome and what challenges you’re still working on. The greatest challenge is that you know too much. You make the decision about what to include and what to leave out.

Life sorting: This is a little like recycling, you need two containers. Have you ever seen the television shows where they go into someone’s home and rejuvenate a room that is filled to the ceiling with junk? They have bins for sorting: Keep – Give Away – Throw Away.

I propose that we use these categories as columns for sorting the stories and the details in those stories.


Give Away

Throw Away



Keep = details that you want to include in your memoir

Give Away = stories or details you want to put aside for now and use later in another story or chapter

Throw Away = details or stories that you consider best left out

These are flexible categories and you can change them from one category to another, but only after you’ve written your basic story.

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September Writing Classes

The location for the Memoir class in September has been changed from the East Branch Library to the Amarillo YMCA South at 4101 S. Hillside, Amarillo, TX. Call ahead and reserve a spot 367-8047. We meet every Tuesday evening from 6:30 – 8:00pm. Each month has a different subject.

Hope to see some of you there.

Also, don’t forget the Write In Retreat on September 23 – 24th. See coming events for details. If you can’t come Friday afternoon come for Saturday at the lower rate. Both days – $75 which includes snacks, handouts, a yoga class, lunch on Saturday, and personal writing time when you can ask specific questions about your manuscript.


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Meet Author Linda K. Hubalek

Linda Hubalek’s sixth grade teacher assigned her to write the traditional paper on what she wanted to be when she grew up, but Linda had an untraditional answer. She didn’t want to be a nurse, teacher, or mom. She wanted to be a farmer! Her dream came true when she graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in Agriculture/Horticulture, and went on to spend years doing agronomy research, and eventually started her own business, Prairie Flower Creations.

Much like her own ancestors who headed West, Linda found herself in California tending a cement garden and longing for the fields of Kansas. Lind “visited” her beloved Kansas by writing the Trail of Thread series about Kansas pioneer women.

Although Linda is back in Kansas (growing bison this time, not prairie flowers), she’s still writing about Kansas women. Her fourth series, the Kansas Quilterseries, will be released later this year.

Find out more about Linda by visiting her websites:

Author website: www.LindaHubalek.com 


Blog: www.LindaHubalek.com/feed/rss

Trail of Thread series

3 Book Series: Trail of ThreadThimble of Soil, and Stitch of Courage

By Linda K. Hubalek

The Trail of Thread series includes three books based on the lives of the author’s ancestors. Each book, told from the viewpoint of a pioneer woman through letters she writes to those “back home,” tells the tale of a family moving from the settled East to the wilds of the newly opened territory of Kansas in the mid 1850s.

The first book, Trail of Thread, tells of life on the trail West as a family makes the cross country journey from Kentucky to Kansas. The second book, Thimble of Soil, is the story of a widow and her children traveling from Ohio to Kansas and trying to establish a home amidst the skirmishes that riddled Kansas, as the slave state and free state supporters battled over the fate of the Kansas territory. The last book, Stitch ofCourage, takes place during the Civil War 

Cleveland Tulip Quilt

years and tells of the marriage between the two families portrayed in books one and two and how the war was fought in the West.

These books are written in letter form, covering the years 1854 to 1865. Twelve quilt patterns are featured in each book of this series.

The books are available as eBooks for Amazon’s Kindle,Barnes & Noble’s Nook, or for Kobobook’s Kobo.

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New Year Expectations

Hope everyone had a wonderful and joyous Christmas. I’m looking forward to the New Year 2009 with a new book coming out, Rebekah Redeemed, and other book deals in the near future.

I continue to ghostwrite and look forward to beginning projects with a new Legacy line of ghostwritten books open to clients. It isn’t your usual family scrapbook or memoir, it is a way to leave behind what you’d really like to pass on to your family and friends – what you’ve learned, your favorite experience, then and now, the things you love, business and personal, spiritual and temporal. Each one is a negotiated price for the ghostwritten book. You can find out more at my website Dianne Sagan – Writer.

I wish all you writers and readers a Happy and prosperous New Year.

Come back on January 2nd and meet another great writer. The Virtual Book Tour guests continue.