We’ve made it to Day 11 in our series, 31 Days of Five Minute Free Writes, and today’s prompt is: REMEMBER.

I’ll be writing for five minutes flat on this prompt as part of my series, 31 Days in the Life of a Christian Writer. Follow along with the rest of the series by clicking here.

 

remember

 

Writing memoir is no joke. Attempting to re-live one’s life through the limitations of a blurred and fallible memory is hard work. The practice of sifting through fragmented memories to create something whole requires a great deal of discipline and perseverance.

But it’s so worth it — not only for the reader eventually, but first and foremost for the writer.

The act of remembering is good for the soul.

It’s a cleansing, sanctifying practice. Going back to places we don’t want to visit can be gut-wrenching, yes — but when we force ourselves to do the work, to sit still in the memory, to look around for a while … more often than not, we start to see God’s fingerprints on the ancient walls.

Remembering is a biblical practice. How many times in Scripture does God tell His people to remember His works, to remember what He has done, to commemorate and celebrate the ways He has carried them and delivered them?

So even though it’s painful, even though it would be much easier to glaze over those parts of our story, I encourage you to do the hard work. Set aside a whole Saturday and a full box of tissues, and let yourself remember.

Push yourself into those black holes until you’re fully immersed — and you see the Light.

 

remember

Photo Credit: Ann Kroeker, Writing Coach (annkroeker.com)

 

Find God’s hand in the pages of your journal, and write it into your story. 

 

Tips for trying to remember: 

1. If possible, visit the places you want to write about. Take time to sit quietly and absorb your surroundings. Take an empty journal or notebook with you so you can free write any details that come to mind. Note the scents, the sounds, the textures.

2. Look through old photographs. Pay attention to the background, the clothes you’re wearing, the food on the plate. Soak in the details and in an attempt to trigger your memory to fill in the gaps.

3. Chat with old friends and ask them what they remember. Sometimes hearing the same story from another perspective or someone else’s memory of an event can stir up details you had forgotten.

 

Recommended Resources

remember

 How to Dredge Up the Memories You Want to Write About 
(Podcast from Ann Kroeker, Writing Coach)

The Trouble with Memoir is a Wiggly Mind
(Podcast from Ann Kroeker, Writing Coach)

 

Lacking the motivation you crave?

Use this Christian Writer's Manifesto to remind yourself why you write.

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