Memoirs are like recycled paper

Memoirs are Like Recycled Paper , you can always get back to them and they still maintain their Quality.

Outstanding memoirs, have the ability to take your readers on a captivating ride.

Not only can you devour memoirs, you should be able to write your own.

Here are 4 simple tips to make your Memoir Relatable and Unique.

Focus on one theme:

You should be able to narrow down the focus of your memoir to one theme, such that it evolves from that point to every other point, but your message is still intact and story, direct.
An example is CHINUA Achebe’s “There was a country” –it focuses on the biafran war and the effect of war in Nigeria and on him as a young person. So the main focus was not dwindling at any point in the novel and that kept you engaged and captivated. *insert wink*

A memoir is not an autobiography

An autobiography doesn’t have a focus, it spans a whole life, a memoir is different and focuses on a series of events around a theme.

Tell other Stories:
Even as you “narrow down your focus”, you could make your work more dynamic and far-reaching by expanding your story in a perspective and making sure other vivid details included.

An example is in my Touring Abuja Online Memoir, I described two ways of traveling to Abuja, strategic locations on my way there, even describing them. I also added a quick meet up story triggered by a conversation with an Hausa Man.

Your readers want you, but other backstories help them digest your memoir better.

Be honest and genuine:
Speak the truth, don’t add a facade or farfetched story. This is often tricky, because we don’t want to hurt or upset the people you care about but have written into our books. But it’s important that you tell the truth, even if it makes your journey as an author more difficult.

Memoirs explore the concept of truth as seen by you.

Now don’t be bitter or saucy in writing, your emotions rub off on your readers too. Your memoir should have a right purpose – Helping people through your story.

Show your readers that they’ve been there too:
Make your memoir relatable and easy to read. You should invite your reader into your perspective so they can draw their own conclusions.

Use vivid language that helps them visualize each scene.

Beautifully Written Memoirs by African Writers

  • The Soft Vengeance of a Freedom Fighter by Albie Sachs.
  • Conversations with Myself by Nelson Mandela
  • A Mouth Sweeter Than Salt by Toyin Falola
  • Sometimes There Is a Void by Zakes Mda

Have you written or are you planning to write a memoir?

Please use our little points to start or review your points. More importantly, try to share your own authentic story with the world.

Now when you write that story, we’d love to have it featured on our blog! So please leave a comment and please send them to

The first part of this article can be found here

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4 thoughts on “Memoirs are like recycled paper”

  1. Lola Shoneyin once said that the reason why women in Nigeria do not really write memoirs is because they always have something to be ashamed of that has to do with family. This is a great read.


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