Talk Your Memoir
Get your lifestory written down, without writing a word.
A 3 month partnership to create your memoir, review your life so far, and leave a legacy.
You’ve always wanted to write your memoir, but you’re not a writer.
You’ve been thinking about your life, and what has shaped you, the lessons you’ve learned, challenges, joys, regrets and triumphs.
You’ve realized you don’t know much about your own ancestors and the lives they lived, and those missing details and missing stories bother you. You wonder what the impact would have been to have grown up hearing those stories. If you’d had more rooting in your own history.
You’d like to leave a legacy to your descendants. You’d like your stories to reach more than just one person at a time, here and there, as conversations come up. You’d like your family to learn from and celebrate you too.
Stories are important.
They’re how we learn and grow. Stories transmit valuable lessons, teach us how to work our way through challenges and give us ways to laugh and celebrate.
We live in a culture that has left behind cultural and ancestral teachings but I believe we’re all hungry for more stories from those who’ve gone before us. We’re hungry for the grounding that our peoples’ heartfelt, honest intelligent and charming stories provide for us.
Your stories matter more than you think. When you uncover and revisit your stories and your life you’re giving yourself the gift of depth and introspection, but more importantly, you’re giving the people around you the gift of insight and appreciation.
Join me in a 3 month memoir-crafting partnership.
We’ll write the first draft of your memoir without you writing a word. Over the course of 10 weekly calls we’ll explore your life experiences and collect your stories. This process includes:
- 1 extensive intake form to lay out the shape of your life so far
- 1 initial planning conversation
- 8 two hour story-collecting calls
- 1 closing conversation
This also includes:
- 2 edits
- transcription of the calls
- sound editing of clips to pull out your storytelling gems
At the end of our partnership you’ll leave with:
- approximately 40,000 words of your lifestory
- a polished first draft of your memoir in a word document, formatted for easy reading
- a clear table of contents
- a collection of audio clips of your best storytelling moments
(payment plans available)
Memoir writing (memoir talking in this case!) is a creative partnership and it always starts with a discussion.
Please do get in touch with any questions or ideas you have.
Who is Janelle?
My name is Janelle Hardy and I’m a published writer with a BA in Anthropology, an MA in Dance and a Diploma in Hellerwork Structural Integration. I’ve worked as a research assistant at Yukon Archives, as a teacher and teaching assistant at Yukon College and York University, and taught creative writing and healing workshops online and in person.
What this means for you is that I’ve got an uncommon ability to listen deeply, ask useful questions, see patterns, draw threads together and do my research.
I’m also a visual artist (in painting – you can see my Devotional Painting service here and my portraiture project here) with a particular passion for family albums, photography and the many stories that our personal photos tell.
What this means for you is that I’ve got the ability to inquire and glean more information and questions from your visual materials.
Frequently Asked Questions
Once you’ve registered and paid the deposit, I make space in my calendar to devote myself to you and your memoir-writing goals.
This is a serious commitment for me, and it’s a serious commitment for you. For that reason, I’m very happy to have a free conversation with you beforehand to ensure that we’re a good fit, that my services and your expectations are a good match, and that this will be an excellent partnership.
Once you’ve signed up the initial deposit is non-refundable. After we’ve started any work I’ve already put into the project is non-refundable.
Cancelling this process because you’re feeling nervous, or diving into your personal stories feels challenging, is not a reason for a refund. Exploring our lifestories has a tendency to bring up all sort of thoughts and feelings, and none of this is a bad thing. It’s simply part of the process. It is not however a reason to cancel the process. Instead, it’s a call to deepen and commit further – to yourself, your desire for your memoir, and your desire to understand yourself better and leave a beautiful legacy gift.
However, if you’re dealing with a serious illness or major medical crisis we can always postpone the process, or give you a refund for the remainder of unrendered services (with all products created up until that point delivered to you).
What do I need?
Earbuds with a microphone. Because we get your stories written down by recording them, you’ll need a quiet space with earbuds/headset that has a microphone in them. This ensures good quality sound for the audio clips we’ll be creating for you!
Download Zoom. I use a videocall platform called Zoom, so you’ll also have to download that to your computer. This is free and quite simple to do.
How are you qualified to do this work?
Thanks for asking.
I’ve got an exceptional amount of skill and experience in interviewing, writing, working with people one-on-one and drawing out stories.
I’m a great listener, I’m always attuned for patterns, deeper meanings and great stories.
I have an appreciation for context, history, and take the role of helping people birth their creations into the world very seriously.
Currently I teach a group memoir writing process twice a year as well, called Personal Mythmaking School.
Why does this only get me a first draft of a memoir?
It takes this much time and energy and effort to get to the first draft. If you’d like to create a finished self-published book, that is completely possible, and we can arrange it. However, it takes more time, energy and money.
In order to make the memoir writing process as accessible as possible, this is how I offer it, and we can always add on to the process if you’d like to continue polishing it. Just let me know and we’ll discuss options.
Can I get more services added to this? I want more than just a first draft.
Just ask and we can discuss.
Extra services can include a request for stories and questions from family and friends, archival research, including photos into the process, professional editing and further story collection, all the way to creating a finished book in your hands.
These extra services increase the cost dramatically, and can always be considered after we’ve got the first draft in your hands as well.