The Craft of Memoir, March 13–April 9 (4 weeks) SP24


March 13, 2024

Registration is closed for this class

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SKU: 266543


"Explore editorial tools and techniques that can help you make memoirs even more compelling." —Tanya Gold, instructor

Important Information About Our Online Courses

Our courses are asynchronous, meaning you never need to be at your computer at any specific hour. More information about how these classes are conducted is available here.

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Memoirs have the power to connect us with the lives of others, and these intimate, yet universal stories give readers a new way of seeing the world. But finding and crafting a personal story in a way that’s compelling to others is challenging for even the best of writers. It’s crucial for editors to understand the particular needs of these authors and their manuscripts so we can give them the best possible support.

This interactive course for editors dives deep into the memoir genre. Through short videos, a series of exercises, and a bunch of discussion, you’ll develop a better understanding of memoir and its readers’ expectations. You’ll learn tools and techniques to help you figure out what a specific manuscript needs, and how you can help the author address those needs to make it even more compelling to its readers.

Week 1: We’ll discuss what defines a memoir, and generate some short pieces to work on together throughout this course. 

Week 2: We’ll explore how to understand the author’s intent, what readers are looking for, and how we apply all of that to an edit.

Week 3: We’ll cover things you’ll want to consider in developmental editing: finding and/or highlighting a specific aspect of a story, techniques for discovering thematic messages, and ways to strengthen structure. 

Week 4: We’ll consider some of the complexities of editing prose in memoir and discuss ways that memoir can blend with other genres. 


This course is intended for developmental editors and line editors with at least a beginner level of experience or training.

Tanya Gold (they/them) is a book editor, writing coach, translator, and literary omnivore. They have been in publishing for about 20 years, and have worked on all kinds of cool books. These days, they work on fiction, memoir, graphic novels, interactive stories, and poetry. They also offer coaching and courses for editors. It has been suggested that they read too much for their own good. This might be true.

Information and Policies
Our class information page has detailed information on registration, accessibility, duration of access to course materials, and refunds. All participants in EFA courses must abide by our anti-harassment policy.

Office Closed Monday April 8.

The EFA Offices will be closed Monday, April 8, 2024. We will reopen on Tuesday, April 9. Job postings, discussion list subscriptions, and other customer service requests may not be responded to until then.

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