Childhood

For this month’s Writers’ Group, I decided to experiment with something new. A couple of months ago (I missed last month), Bernice and Barbara both suggested that I write my memoir.

Memoirs are popular in the Group, but I’ve never attempted to write my personal history. I write about my life at present, but never about growing up. The main stumbling block has been that I don’t remember much about my life prior to my family’s move to Washington in 1973. I remember bits and pieces, events here and there, but nothing like a comprehensive story.

The simple act of looking up my old neighborhood, in the suburbs of New Orleans, on Google Maps, brought back a lot of memories. It’s strange how that works.

So, starting last Thursday, I wrote the beginning of my memoir. I made things harder, on purpose, by not asking my parents for details. I made things easier by not trying to put things in chronological order. I stopped at 1973.

When I was done, I read what I’d written. I waffled between thinking it was pretty good and thinking it was terrible. This morning, right before Writers’ Group, I was leaning toward thinking it was terrible.

It went over surprisingly well. I was encouraged to continue.

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