If Bristol Palin's getting a memoir, we need to get on the same page about what makes a good memoir and what does not. Some are salacious, some are embellished, and others are just old stories itching to be told. So whether it's Eat, Pray, Love, Joan Didion's Year of Magical Thinking, or Russell Brand's My Booky Wook: A Memoir of Sex, Drugs, and Stand-Up, tell us what your favorite memoir is.
Smith Magazine, inspired by a challenge Ernest Hemingway was once given to write his memoir in six words, has been inviting readers to do the same since 2006. I recently checked out their website and found the following six-word memoir quite poignant: "Paying off student loans with unemployment."
What's your memoir in six words? Tell me in the comments!
A few years ago, while facing her 30th birthday, Julie Powell decided that even though she had no culinary background, she was going to master Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. So she built herself a blog and gave herself a year to complete every single recipe inside. There were ups and downs, but over the course of 365 days not only does she learns how to make a clafouti, but she learns a lot about herself. While reading the compelling memoir, entitled Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment, you'll have the opportunity to step inside one gal's attempt to change her life.
Personally, I found the journey to be wonderfully heartwarming and a pleasure to read. Powell's prose is witty, provocative and had my stomach growling, my heart aching and my mind enthralled. I'll have to warn you though, if you're looking for a book about French cooking, you're going to have to keep searching. While it is definitely sprinkled with food, the memoir is really a vehicle for what the author was going through during that period in her life. You may not find the secret to unlock your inner Julia Child, but you will find a really entertaining read.
Looking for inspiration? Well, Tania Katan's memoir, My One-Night Stand With Cancer, will definitely inspire you. This book is not only a touching, moving, real, honest account of her getting breast cancer twice, it is also hilarious. And that is the last thing you'd ever expect from a cancer memoir. She is courageous, brave, and most of all, totally funny.
Katan was diagnosed with stage-3 breast cancer at age 21 and survived that – but lost her right breast. 10 years later, she lost her left breast to the same disease.
You may have heard of her, running marathons topless to heighten people's awareness of breast cancer. She found that running allowed her to create a healthy body that’s capable of enduring anything.
As a runner and a woman, I found this book to be beyond inspiring. It's a beautiful, down-to-earth account of strength and hope. You can get it through Amazon for $12.44.