Fear of sounding rubbish
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Overcoming the Fear of Being “Rubbish” in Memoir Writing

“Failure is one of the best prerequisites for writing a memoir.” – Thornton Sully

In the grand tapestry of human experience, our lives unfold across countless moments, each with its own significance and a story waiting to be told. Memoir writing, a timeless art, invites us to weave together the threads of our past, present, and aspirations for the future into a narrative that speaks to the very core of who we are. 

Yet, amidst the pages and ink, there looms a shadow—a fear that our stories, our lives, might not be “good enough.”

The fear of being “rubbish” while penning our memoirs is a sentiment that resonates deeply with many aspiring writers. It’s the nagging doubt that whispers in our ears, questioning the validity of our experiences, the relevance of our narratives, and the worthiness of our voices. It’s the apprehension that our stories might fall short, fail to resonate, or worse yet, be dismissed altogether.

“It’s like, you have this fear of being rubbish. The realization is that you have to be rubbish. Like it’s literally part of the process. It’s kind of, you’re going to get the first draft. It’s going to be rubbish,” says Oscar-winner Daniel Kaluuya who recently co-wrote “The Kitchen,” a film exploring the complexities of the Black British experience set in a dystopian universe.

“In order to write about life first you must live it.”

Ernest Hemingway

But here’s the truth: Your life is more than mere pages on paper. Your experiences, your struggles, your triumphs—they are the raw material of your memoir, waiting to be molded into something beautiful, something powerful, something uniquely yours. Your story matters. Your voice matters. And the world deserves to hear it.

“Failure is one of the best prerequisites for writing a memoir.” says Thornton Sully, Editor in Chief at A Word With You Press. That’s where the story comes from. our story—what you have to offer, what you have to say—may not find its way to the New York Times best-seller list, but it may very well find the select audience that will be enchanted and inspired by your words, and grateful you made the effort to write them. Your work could keep someone from dehydrating, and could add meaning to their lives.

But what if the fear persists? What if the daunting prospect of putting pen to paper feels insurmountable?

Recognize that perfection is not the goal—that vulnerability, authenticity, and honesty are the true hallmarks of a compelling memoir. It’s about embracing the messy, imperfect, wonderfully human aspects of our lives and allowing them to shine through the pages of our narratives.

But in the end, remember, you do not have to do it alone. That’s where Assisted Legacy comes in. At Assisted Legacy we understand that for some,  the fear of failure can be paralyzing, the uncertainty overwhelming, and the journey fraught with challenges. That’s why we offer a range of services designed to support and empower writers on their creative journey—from editing manuscripts to publishing on behalf of authors.

With Assisted Legacy by your side, you don’t have to face the fear of failure alone. You can embark on your memoir writing journey with confidence, knowing that you have a trusted ally to guide you every step of the way, that you can relinquish the fear of being “rubbish” and embrace the journey of self-discovery and self-express

So, to all aspiring memoirists out there, take heart. Your story is valid. Your voice is powerful. And with the right support and encouragement, you have the power to craft a memoir that resonates, inspires, and endures. Your journey begins here. Let your story unfold.

Embrace the fear, embrace the journey, and let your legacy live on.

Because in the end, it’s not about being perfect—it’s about being real. And that’s a story worth telling.

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