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Your Story Is Important
•Memories are like unsorted photos
that someone has thrown into a box.
•Organizing your memories gives you a
clear picture of your life.
•When you release the details of your
life, you discover what makes your
journey worth living and telling.
My Grandfather, James
McMahon II, was born on
Prince Edward Island,
Canada. Both his father
and mother were Irish
McMahon emigrated from
Canada to Detroit,
Michigan. He lived in
Corktown, Detroit’s Irish
community. My father,
James McMahon III, was
born in Corktown. I never
met my grandfather and
wish that I had asked
more questions about
Why Write a Memoir?
• Are you curious about your grandparents? If so, then there’s
a good chance your grandkids will be curious about you.
• Writing about your life helps dissolve loss, betrayal, regret,
and guilt that has kept you stuck in the past.
• You share ideas and lessons. Your knowledge and wisdom
can help others grow along with you.
• You form a connection with those who read your words.
• Creating a written narrative, your past takes shape, offering
a clearer vision of who you are today.
• You can extend the knack of storytelling into the future
• Writing is a challenging mental activity. It can develop brain
Write Your Story
Theme (story of my hometown and me)
Outline (four parts)
Write (must be in the mood)
Review (check consistency)
Obtain a professional editor
Correct and rewrite
Edit, edit, edit, edit
How to Publish
In house designers
No money up front
Packages, prints and distributes book
Slow (6 months) production (1 year)
Buys rights - loss of control
Takes 85% to 92%
Literary agent may be required
You basically become the publisher.
Control of your book
Quick service (few days to 6 weeks)
Greater profit on your book
Print on demand
Financial risk - up front costs
Bookstore access difficult
Benefit of an experienced publisher
Slow, but longer, exposure
Basic- grammar, punctuation and spelling
Comprehensive- structure, plot, characterization and tone
• Design and Layout
Interior –type, chapter arrangement, page color and picture
Exterior- design and colors of the front and back cover, size of
book and written part of back cover
• Important Numbers
ISBN –International Standard Book Number and 9 digit code
LCCN –Library of Congress Control Number
• Types of book
• Press Release
Professional review (paid and unpaid)
The Motor City and Me: Our Story
Video Book Trailer
• Texas Sales Tax Number
Legal papers- copyright and tax forms
Press release and book correspondence
Copy of reviews
Printed list of expenses
Printed record of earnings
Tasks and events
• Computer spreadsheets
• Square Credit Card Reader for your
• Receipt book