Writing Your Memoir

By Josephine Chia

15 June 2012 (Fri)
10.00am – 6.00pm

Toa Payoh Public Library
6 Toa Payoh Central, Singapore 319191

Course Fee: $280.00

This is a past course. View upcoming courses.


  • Introduction
  • What is the difference between an autobiography and memoir?
  • How do you transform your memories into good, creative prose?
  • Rewriting boring sentences into creative, interesting prose.
  • The Mantra of writing is: show not tell. Opening Sentences & Paragraph
  • Writing the opening sentences of your memoir. (Using your own trigger ie photo, item, memorabilia etc)
  • Elements of Story – what makes a story?
  • Brainstorming to find your story
  • Why must a memoir have dialogue?
  • Writing good dialogue
  • Setting a scene
  • Characterisation & how it affects memoirs
  • Reading out & discussion of participant’s First Page of memoirs (Participants are encouraged to submit First chapter of their own memoirs 3 weeks before the workshop to tutor prior to workshop but only First Page to be read out in class. If no one has written any, the time will be taken to write it)
  • Publishing possibilities & market info


Most of us have treasured memories that we would like to share with others. They could be happy or painful memories or memories of a way of life that is now gone. Whether you want to record your memoir for your grandchildren or the public, this workshop will show you how to write it in a readable and an entertaining way so that others will find it interesting too.

About the trainer: Josephine Chia

Josephine Chia

Josephine Chia is an internationally published author and Creative Writing facilitator. She is proud of her Peranakan heritage which she expresses in her writing. Her latest book, Kampong Spirit, Gotong Royong, Life in Potong Pasir 1955 to 1965, published by Marshall Cavendish, features Josephine’s childhood in a kampong. This is her eighth book.

Josephine has recently returned to Singapore to live after having been in England for over thirty years. Her big literary break came in UK in 1992 when her short story, Tropical Fever won her a prize for UK’s Ian St. James Award and was published by Harper Collins in an anthology. Since then Josephine has gone on to win other UK prizes. She writes both fiction and non-fiction. The second edition of her memoirs, Frog Under A Coconut Shell was released in UK in April 2011. This book is about Josephine’s mother and her battle with Alzheimer’s.

Registration Details

Registration is on a first-come-first-served basis and workshop fees must be paid before the workshop. If the minimum number of participants is not met for the class, the organisers will inform all participants about possible postponement and cancellation of workshop, two weeks before the workshop date.

All ALAP workshops serve tea-breaks and provide course handouts.

Cancellation & Substitution

The workshop can be cancelled or postponed two weeks before the workshop date if the minimum number of participants is not met. Participants will be fully refunded for workshops cancelled by us.

Participants who are unable to attend a workshop they have registered for are to inform us of the reason two weeks before the workshop date. They will be fully refunded in the event of extenuating and mitigating circumstances ( E.g. illness, bereavement, accidents) . Those who inform us later than two weeks before the workshop date will receive a 50 % refund. Participants can also opt to attend another course at the same value within the same year.

Upon registration, you are deemed to have read and understood the cancellation, withdrawal and substitution policy and accept the terms contained therein.