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The genre of memoirs has undergone evolutionary changes in the content, form, and means of expression of the author's position over the centuries. Evolving from brief notes (the so-called form of “notebooks”) to more complex diary entries or a strict chronological narration about the events of the author’s life and the surrounding atmosphere, memoirs went through a complex way of improving artistic forms and content, which are undoubtedly associated with the cultural and historical features of the era in which the writer lived and worked. In the memoirs, external historical events constitute the main object of the narration. The author's line turns out to accompany them. The memories are not only the impassive fixation of the events of the past; they are a confession and justification, accusation, and thoughts of the individual. Therefore, the memoirs, like no other document, are subjective. It is not a flaw but a property of memoirs, as they bear the imprint of the author’s personality.
Due to its purely historical orientation, the memoir genre previously occupied a separate niche in literature. Initially, its primary task was to display the events of the past based on the author’s memories or any historical documents. However, in the course of its evolution, the genre has significantly transformed and expanded its boundaries, especially, in the synthesis with other genres and directions that influenced it at different times.
Its structure has undergone changes and has become complicated: composition, imaginative system, language, a form of narration (notes, letters, diaries, autobiographies), all this made the memoir genre a full-fledged genre of fiction. Moreover, actual life problems began to rise beyond the personality of the author. Thus, any memoir work can be considered artistic, taking into account its main components, such as form, content, plot, the system of images, style, and manner of narration, the presence of a pronounced theme, language tools, etc. A particularly important role in this case is played by the artistic means of the memoir work since they are an indicator of the author’s work in an attempt to establish communication with the reader, to convey your ideas and plans as clearly as possible, to recreate the pictures of the past, and to draw the reader’s attention to the important life events.
How to Write Memoirs
Good memoirs should be interesting. Find your style. Write in simple language. Remember, you have to create a piece of art not just list the events. You need to describe not only your experiences but also various events from your life. Do not write about things that are not directly related to you.
You can write memoirs basing on your diaries. The diaries can be divided into two categories. The first is the diary entries, simply stating the order of events and the author's attitude towards them. The second category of entries is a peculiar form of artistic creation. Such notes are characterized by the attentive study of the text. Diary entries will help you to recreate the correct sequence of events.