A Madison Magazine Reader’s Memories Become 
a Published Memoir
Oct 9, 2012
10:06 AM
From Memory to Memoir

Our Memoir Contest Explained

Our Memoir Contest Explained

Madison Magazine and I have teamed up to offer one lucky reader the chance to see his or her life story become a book. To enter submit a 500-word autobiographical sketch by October 31, 2012.

After we pick a winner, I’ll be blogging about the process as we work together. Not every great story can be a winner, so we’ll also share some of the other sketches entered. Follow along here and watch a composite portrait of Madison take shape!

In the meantime—since I promised I wouldn’t sneak a peek at the entries as they come in—what can I share with you? How about a few of the questions that readers have asked about the contest?

What is “the Madison area”?

Big. If your story concerns the area covered by Channel 3 broadcasts—a sister company to Madison Magazine—then you’re in the Madison area. In Platteville? Pardeeville? Sun Prairie? You’re in the area. Send us your stories.

Does it have to be a story about Madison?

No. You lived in Madison over 30 years. You took two years off to serve in the Peace Corps—and your life was forever changed. Is that story suitable for the contest? Yes!

Does it have to be about me?

No. Many people write memoirs about the family members, teachers, or other guides who have influenced them. Your memoir could focus on an individual whose life reveals lessons or values worth sharing. “Me” may be the first word in “memoir” but it’s not the last!

In my next post I’ll tell you more about how the process unfolds when I become someone’s writing partner.

Map of Wisconsin's counties courtesy of Bruce Jones Design. 

Sarah White is the founder of First Person Productions

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About This Blog

Sarah White, author and personal historian, has written for a variety of markets ranging from business “how-to” books to consumer advice for teens. She applies her professional writing experience to help individuals preserve their life stories through workshops, community projects and one-to-one coaching. Born into a writing family, White graduated from Indiana University in 1980 with a Journalism degree. She has been a professional freelance writer since 1998. Her memoir essays have been published online and in print. She has taught memoir writing locally since 2004, helping dozens of individuals to complete and publish their life stories. She is active in the Association of Personal Historians (www.personalhistorians.org), currently serving as the organization's president. 

 Sarah White

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