By: James F. O’Neil
Memoirs are special stories: narratives with significance for the teller. Sometimes memoirs are written by old people, sometimes not. For a memoir could be in the form of a lecture, like that by a professor with pancreatic cancer: Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture, a moving memoir about life and living and love and family. Good stuff for storytelling
I want to share stories–about life and living and love and family.
Somewhere, somehow, I had a chance to write a story, “Once upon a time…” I cannot remember that story, but I have others to write and many that I have already written–probably enough to last a lifetime, however long that might be.
I have a difficult time trying to organize. I become frazzled and frustrated, not knowing how to begin or where to begin. Yet I know enough to begin at that “once-upon-a-time” time.
For now, though, I begin with this:
“A large part of our self-concept consists of the narrative by means of which we remember and relate our past experiences,” wrote Sam Keen in To a Dancing God.
“TELL ME A FACT: I’LL LEARN.
TELL ME A TRUTH: I’LL BELIEVE.
BUT TELL ME A STORY: IT WILL LIVE IN MY HEART–FOREVER.”
This is an Indian proverb from a wonderful “stories-told” book, The Right Words at the Right Time by Marlo Thomas and Friends
And this also:
“What is the self? It is the sum of everything we remember.” I found this gem somewhere, from the author Milan Kundera.
Remembering is special. It sometimes keeps me going. But telling about the remembered? The more I tell, the more I am. And this is pleasing to me. And how I do like those “once-upon-a-time” times.
© James F. O’Neil 2013