Do you want to tell your own story?
Life stories have resonance for others and are a gift to be shared. In this online memoir writing course you will develop a practical understanding of how to write a memoir and feel confident and comfortable with the notion of feeling vulnerable.
You’ll be exposed to a wide variety of memoirs told through a range of forms – from memoirs written in first person, or even second person point of view, to memoirs told in snapshots, experimental montage, and even graphic memoirs. Texts used in this course will be written by professional and non-professional writers, so, whether you’ve got previous writing experience or not, you’ll find work written by people easily relatable.
Monday 12 February 2024
12 weeks (please see course schedule below)
On this course you will learn to…
- Consider different forms of memoir
- Explore why you might want to write your story
- Identify moments and memories that you might want to form into your memoir
- Tackle your own vulnerability and how to harness this in your memoir writing
- Examine stories from different points of view
- Feel more confident to write your own memoir.
Why study with National Centre for Writing?
National Centre for Writing has been supporting writers to develop their craft for over 25 years. Our online tutored courses are developed in partnership with University of East Anglia, home to the prestigious School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing, which boasts award-winning alumni including Kazuo Ishiguro, Ian McEwan and Anne Enright. Our course tutors are all published writers, many of whom have studied or taught at UEA themselves.
While there are many online courses available to you across the world, ours are unique in offering:
- One-to-one feedback on up to six assignments, directly from your course tutor
- A tailored learning experience with 15 students maximum
- Flexibility to progress through the course anywhere, any time
- Support and structure to develop a writing routine
- Skills and knowledge to improve the craft of writing
- Confidence in your ability as a writer
- Opportunity to join our NCW Alumni, an international network of like-minded writers and translators.
The format of the course really suited me, with feedback from the tutor on six pieces of writing, plenty of very high-quality online content, a horizon-expanding reading list and face to face sessions to meet the tutor and other students online.
Module one – Why Write Your Story?
In this module you’ll explore why you might want to write your story. You’ll look at the sorts of things a memoir might contain, and you’ll start to identify moments and memories that you might want to form into your memoir. You’ll submit up to 900 words of writing for assessment from your tutor.
Module two – Reflection
Memoirs are reflections on your life and in this module you’ll explore the reflective voice. You’ll explore elements of your life that have changed your perspective in someway and you’ll read examples of the reflective voice being used in memoir writing.
Module three – Power of Vulnerability
In this module you’ll tackle your own vulnerability and how to harness this in your memoir writing. You’ll explore the things that might stop you from writing your memoir and the ways to overcome these.
Module four – Point of View and Hybrid Memoirs
When we think of memoirs we think of first person accounts, however this isn’t the only way to write your story. In this module you’ll look at examples of memoirs that play with style and form, and you’ll explore stories from different points of view.
Module five – Place and Time
This module will help you place your story within the bigger picture, as well as determining when you are ready to embark on writing your memoir. You’ll look at the merits and challenges of writing for catharsis and you’ll tackle tone in your writing.
Module six – Composition and Form
In this final module you’ll return to the structural elements of memoir writing. You’ll look at the way you might want to compose your story and you’ll explore reading and writing memoirs using different forms. For this final module, you’ll pull together everything you’ve learnt to submit 1000 words of your memoir.
There will be two live sessions for this course, which will take place over Zoom.
Timings for these live sessions will be confirmed shortly.
Emmanuel Iduma is a writer who trained as a lawyer in Nigeria. He is the author of the travelogue A Stranger’s Pose (2018), which was longlisted for 2019 Ondaatje Prize, and I Am Still With You (2023), a memoir on the aftermath of the Nigerian civil war. He has written for Granta, n+1, the New York Review of Books, Aperture, Yale Review, and others. He was awarded a Windham-Campbell Prize for nonfiction in 2022. In 2020, Iduma was recognized in Apollo International Art Magazine’s ’40 under 40 Africa’ for the broad social impact of his work.
Iduma has an MFA in Art Writing from the School of Visual Arts, New York City, where he taught for several years. He lives in Lagos, Nigeria and Norwich, UK.
The tutor was wonderfully inspiring and supportive, the course content was excellent and the exercises built my confidence in writing from a personal perspective.
How does this course work?
We have partnered with digital learning platform Teachable to host our self-paced courses. The platform is accessible across a range of devices, simple to use, and does not require any specialist equipment.
We want to make sure that you get the most out of our tutored online courses and feel confident that you’re choosing the right course. Each course contains a mixture of teaching content, reading to prompt discussion, writing exercises for you to hone your skills, and group and one-to-one feedback.
Click to read more about how they are structured and what equipment you may need.