Finding the Theme of Your Memoir: It’s Not About You, It’s About the Reader

Hey there, budding memoirist! You’re knee-deep in life experiences and eager to share them with the world through your memoir. But wait a minute. Have you found your theme yet? Do you know what it’s really about? And no, the answer isn’t “me”. Here’s a little secret. Your memoir? It’s not just about you; it’s about the reader. Intrigued? Keep reading!

Memoir Themes: It’s About the Reader, Not Just You

So you’ve lived an exciting life and you’re ready to put it all down in words. That’s great! But a memoir isn’t just a chronicle of your life; it’s a journey for your readers. You’re not just telling them what happened; you’re making them feel it, experience it, learn from it. So the question is, what do you want them to feel, experience, learn?

The Universality of Themes

Themes are what give your memoir its universality. They’re what make your readers say, “Hey, I’ve felt that too!” or “That’s exactly what I needed to hear!” They’re what make your personal story resonate with readers around the world. So what are your themes? Love? Loss? Resilience? Redemption? Find them and weave them into your narrative.

Finding Your Theme: Look Beyond Your Experiences

Your memoir is based on your experiences, but your theme is found beyond them. It’s not about what happened; it’s about what you learned from it, how you grew from it. It’s about the universal human experiences that we all share. So, look beyond the events of your life. What’s the bigger picture? What’s the universal truth?

Examples of Reader-Oriented Themes

Need some inspiration? Let’s look at some examples. Maybe your memoir is about overcoming adversity, showing your readers that they too can survive and thrive no matter what life throws at them. Maybe it’s about forgiveness, teaching your readers the power of letting go. Maybe it’s about self-discovery, inspiring your readers to embark on their own journeys of self-exploration. The possibilities are endless!


Finding the theme of your memoir is more than just figuring out what your story is about. It’s about finding the universal in the personal, the shared in the unique. It’s about taking your readers on a journey, giving them something to hold on to, something to learn from. 


So remember, your memoir isn’t just about you; it’s about your reader. It’s about giving them something more than just a story. It’s about giving them a piece of you, a piece of the world, a piece of the human experience. So go ahead, find your theme, and start writing. The world is waiting to hear your story!

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