As a literary genre, memoirs are more popular than ever, with young authors now joining the ranks of best-selling memoirists. Among the most talked about recent memoirs these days is “Hillbilly Elegy” (now a Netflix movie), by 31-year-old J.D. Vance; “Educated,” by 34-year-old Tara Westover; and “On Earth We Are Briefly Beautiful,” by 32-year-old Ocean Vuong.
Now, East Hampton Library is offering beginning memoirists an opportunity to dive into the genre by writing on an unexpected event, a challenge or the process of seeking a path. Find your narrative voice by joining Fundamentals in Memoir Writing, a new program for beginners taught via Zoom by professional journalist Andrew Visconti. His dynamic weekly classes will focus on journalistic techniques to create a cohesive narrative structured around active scenes, fully developed characters, and attention to details.
Classes will meet Thursdays from 6 to 8 p.m., starting January 14 and running through March 18, for a total of 20 hours.
For experienced memoir writers, Visconti is also offering How to Develop a Memoir, a series of Zoom classes open to people who have taken the previous advanced writing classes. This time, the focus will be on helping writers to identify an individual narrative theme and develop it through a series of weekly submissions. To that end, upon signing up, participants will be asked to submit an essay that captures a topic that most likely will be the focus of their writing in the following weeks. The 20-hour course runs Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to noon from January 19 until March 23.
There is strong demand and limited capacity for both classes. The library asks attendees to commit to attending the sessions. To register, email firstname.lastname@example.org.