"... readers of creative nonfiction are not so much interested in your life, but what you think of your life, the steps you have taken to understand it. It is what makes a book memorable; it is what sticks."
Life story writing delves into a composite of strengths and struggles. It takes insight and courage to confront mistakes and failings with permission to let them trickle onto the page. Self-understanding results from acknowledging areas of vulnerability.
How is it possible to provide a patchwork of self without gathering unpleasant choices to write about?
Missteps lead to the joy of dance.
Everyone suffers from what Thomas Merton calls the "trembling self." Individuals are not always heroic and right. Delving into troubling notions begins the eternal search for "how am I" in addition to the "who."
Write to discover ways beyond taking revenge, taking sides, or sharing war stories. Artifacts of courage include unfinished efforts.
Consider your unfinished efforts. Write into, around and through an issue that causes a "trembling self."
Take notice of how you get in the way of your self-discoveries in this situation.
Write from another perspective you do not agree with.
Make notes of insights that result.