Memoir night at the library

At the Royal Oak Public Library: It’s All About You: How to Write Your Memoir, Wednesday, July 8, 7:00pm. 

DSCN2101Join me for a summer evening discussion about the craft of memoir. Whether you want to write a personal essay for publication or a book for your family legacy, this talk will help you get started. We’ll work from my favorite “Map of Your Life” exercise, and discuss the secrets of staying out of the editor’s slush pile. New and experienced writers welcome.

Copies of my own memoir, Writing Home, will be available at a discount to attendees. This class is free to the public, but seating is limited. Advance registration required. Please phone the Royal Oak Public Library (248-246-3700) or visit www.ropl.org for details.

Write your life

Everything in life is writable if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.” — Sylvia Plath

Whether you want to write a book-length memoir for your family or a short personal essay for publication, you need to master the basic rules of good, clear writing.

Perfect for beginners, Write the Stories of Your Life might be the nudge you need to get started. It’s my favorite workshop to teach, and I’m very happy to be able to offer it again at the Royal Oak Public Library on three consecutive Wednesday evenings: June 13, 20, and 27, from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. (Please note that each class will be different. If you miss a class, please arrange to have a fellow student save the handouts for you.)

This three-week workshop is free to the public, but it fills up quickly. (Pre-registration is required.) If you miss it this time around, another session will be offered later in the summer or fall; details to be announced here on my blog. For registration contact info, please visit www.ROPL.org. To read a Royal Oak Patch article about the workshop, click here.

Copies of my own memoir, Writing Home, will be available at a special discount to workshop students at the ROPL.

— Original collage, “Writer Girl,” by Cindy La Ferle —

Support your local authors

Miss a meal if you have to, but don’t miss a good book.” — Jim Rohn

Earlier this year, I went to a friend’s book signing event that was so well attended it brought tears to my eyes. My friend and his co-author gave a wonderful presentation to a standing-room-only crowd — and sold more books than they’d initially planned.

I was reminded of my very first book signing for Writing Home at our local Borders. Before the signing, I worried that only a handful of relatives would show up. Imagine my surprise, and gratitude, when I walked into Borders and saw a line forming at my table — a line of new friends, old neighbors, and column readers from all over the community. I sold so many books that the manager invited me back to do another book signing at holiday time two months later.

All of this got me thinking: What if I could provide a similar supportive experience — a huge book signing — for other authors in my hometown, all in one location? And what if this book sale event could also serve as an opportunity to encourage aspiring authors who want to learn more about getting published?

The first annual Royal Oak Authors Book Fair sprouted from that seed. Thanks to the Royal Oak Public Library, a dozen authors from Royal Oak will gather for a community book signing and public panel discussion this Saturday, Oct. 9, 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.

Nearly every literary genre, from fiction to self-help will be represented at the Fair. Many of Royal Oak’s authors have been featured nationally and are “best-sellers” in their own right: Book Fair authors and publishers will include: Gerry Boyan, David Clements, Judy Davids, Steve Haffner (Haffner Press), Dr. Charles K. Hyde, Steve Lehto, Trevor McCauley, Maureen McDonald, Eleanor Payson, John S. Schultz, Tom Weschler, and yours truly.

So bring your questions on publishing and the writing life to our panel discussion at 1:30 in the Royal Oak Public Library Auditorium. Help us celebrate the printed word. And plan to do some book shopping afterward. I’ll be signing copies of my own book, plus you’ll find several books on Detroit’s automotive history; fantasy and sci-fi novels: a biography on Bob Seger; a hitchhiker’s novel; a photo-history of Royal Oak; a self-help guide; plus memoirs, murder mysteries … and more! — Cindy La Ferle

Royal Oak Authors Book Fair poster (above) designed by Judy Davids. Click on the poster for a larger view.