What's a Raconteur?


A person who tells anecdotes in a skillful and amusing way; a storyteller; a narrator

What is the difference between a memoir and an autobiography?

Memoir vs. Autobiography

You’ve heard of, and have likely read, autobiographies and memoirs. The terms are sometimes wrongly used interchangeably, as they are both nonfiction, first-person accounts of a person’s life. Though memoirs and autobiographies share many similarities, there are some key differences.

An autobiography is a chronological account of the events of a person’s life, written by the subject or ghostwritten on behalf of the subject. The subject usually includes information on their birth, childhood, teenage years, adult life, careers, and relationships. An autobiography is often written later in the subject’s life as a reflection of their experiences and achievements. Most legacy books—those purposed to be family heirlooms read by children and grandchildren and passed down to future generations—are autobiographies. The main sources of an autobiography include the subject’s memory, interviews with people who know the subject well, and records from their life. 

A memoir is different. It’s a collection of memories rather than a chronological life story, usually written by the subject or ghostwritten on their behalf. Most memoirs are told in the first-person perspective. Rather than having the goal of chronicling an entire life story, the goal of a memoir is to evoke emotion in the reader. Memoirs often focus on a challenge the subject overcame or a particular period or topic within one’s life. Memoirs can be produced at any time in a person’s life, rather they are up in age or quite young. The subject’s memory, diary entries, and interviews with people who know the subject well serve as the main sources for a memoir. Most often, legacy books are not memoirs, because legacy books tell the whole life story.

Contact Raconteur

The subject(s) of the book will communicate their story to a writer
The subject(s) of the book has passed away and other loved ones will relay their story to the writer
The subject(s) of the book has written pieces of their life story, but needs a writer to add to and refine the work for publication

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