Learn How to Write an Autobiography Step by Step
When you are assigned to write an autobiography, several things might come to your mind. Questions like:
- What to include in an autobiography?
- How to start an autobiography?
- How to end an autobiography? Etc. are some of the most common questions.
You might be thinking - who am I and what I could possibly write in the autobiography. If you face a similar situation and want to learn how to write an autobiography for school, you are in the right place.
In this blog, you will get the answers to all of these questions and write a life story that truly deserves a high grade.
What is an Autobiography?
An autobiography is a form of writing where the writer narrates his/her own life. Do not confuse an autobiography with a biography which involves the person’s life story written by someone else.
Basically a biography involves a number of different events a person experiences throughout their lifetime but the writer is someone else.
Rather than being written by someone else, an autobiography is a self-written story. Some autobiographies are also written in fictional tales. Such as novels or stories that mimic events from the real-life experiences of the author.
In the process of writing a memoir or an autobiography, one can discover himself. Remember, it is not just about a mere collection of stories but a revelation of self-discovery.
There are different types of autobiography writing, and you can choose the one based on things that you want to cover.
Autobiography vs. Biography
Before you begin, understand the key elements of autobiography vs biography to ensure you are writing in the correct scope.
Autobiography vs. Memoir
Here you can understand the main differences between an autobiography vs memoir and for what purpose they are written.
Elements of Autobiography
Following are the essential elements of autobiography that must be included to make it stand alone:
- Describe your origin: A description of your personal origin story: This can include your hometown, what your family was like when you were in school, and special moments.
- Describe your experiences: Tell about important experiences that changed your mind.
- Collection of your important moments: Detailed memories of your life. These are often the turning points that your history will be known for. Be sure to give them extra care and attention.
- Failure story: Tell a story about how you acted in response to a failure. Adding a failure is mandatory to help people learn from it.
- Compelling title: Don't have boring titles. Use words that are not usual like "my autobiography" or "the story of me, my family," etc.,
- First-person: Third-person writing can seem like you are trying to pretend to be someone else. In the autobiography format, it is better to write in the first person so that people know you are telling your own story.
How to Write an Autobiography?
Looking for simple and brief instructions on how to write an autobiography? Here is a step-by-step guide that you can follow to save your time and nerves.
- 1. Read a Famous Autobiography
- 2. Think Over Your Life
- 3. Create a List and Pick One
- 4. Create an Outline
- 5. Edit and Proofread
- 6. Get Feedback
You are not the first person to write an autobiography. There are many examples of famous writers, artists, and businessmen out there who created autobiographies and shared their life experiences with a wide audience.
For example, Benjamin Franklin, Nelson Mandela, and Katharine Hepburn all wrote amazing autobiographies that are still read today.
Before you decide to write, find the autobiography of the author whose life truly inspires you and read it to get a better understanding of writing an autobiography.
Remember every prominent event, unusual experience, or important person, or even a memorable day in your life. Take time and think about the moments that have been interesting enough to share.
If you want to write about your childhood, you better get help from your parents. Perhaps they will tell you that you did something amazing when you were a child.
The most satisfying and helpful part of writing an autobiography is making a list. It is advisable to write all the memories into sections or categories. Such as in one section, write about your family members, parents, siblings, and your memories of high school in another.
In this way, you will be able to structure your thoughts logically. Remember, autobiography is not about writing each and everything of your life. You have to choose one event, place, or person to write about.
After choosing the idea, express it in the thesis statement and combine all the memories into meaningful information as a whole. Make sure that the selected theme is not only interesting to you but to the readers as well.
Planning is an important part of the whole autobiography writing process. A detailed structure before you start writing will make the process easier to complete. The outline will work as a backbone by keeping all the information in one place. A good autobiography outline must include an introduction, body section, and a captivating conclusion.
Once you are done with the writing, check your autobiography for mistakes in grammar, spelling, style, punctuation, verb tense, etc. No matter how good your writing skills are, your readers will stop reading as soon as they notice the first mistake.
Before you hand in your autobiography, ask someone to go through it and provide you with feedback. In this way, you will be able to notice mistakes that you might have missed in the editing and proofreading process. A fresh perspective will definitely help you improve the whole content.
Now you know the instructions to learn how to write an autobiography on yourself. Make sure you follow the correct autobiography format to get your ideas across in an organized way.
In addition to that, if you desire to write a book, the above guidelines can also be applied to craft an interesting piece of writing for the readers.
Writing an autobiography is a great accomplishment. Be it an autobiography novel or a short story of a person. You will not be able to commence the writing process if you do not have an outline in hand.
The purpose of having an outline or an autobiography template will serve as a reminder of your life’s events.
Here you can have a look at the autobiography outline to get a quick and easy guide for beginning the autobiography writing process.
Introduce yourself in the first paragraph and avoid going into details at this point. Give a general idea of yourself by stating your name, age, and personality traits, etc. You can also add some family history, and it will help the reader to understand how you became the person you are now.
The body is the section where the main information is presented. It elaborates significant events and details in the right manner. Divide the main idea into different paragraphs and connect the information logically.
Leave the reader with strong and thought-provoking information for writing the conclusion. State some useful life lessons and experiences that helped you to become a better person.
The above outline is all you need for a perfect flow of information in an autobiography. You can follow the same outline if you want to learn how to write an autobiography novel.
Now you know how to write an autobiography about yourself. But a good approach is to read some autobiography examples before you start writing. In this way, you will understand the writing style and approaches used by the other experienced writers.
Here is a short autobiography example that you can have a look at and learn how to write an autobiography essay about your life.
How to Write an Autobiography about Myself
How to Write an Autobiography for Kids
When working on your autobiography, it is important to spend a lot of time planning and outlining your work. Find a significant event that can present your unique experience. Take enough time to draft ideas and create an outline and think about how to write personal narratives.
Now you know what an autobiography is and how to write a perfect one. Hopefully, the above guide clarifies all the nuances in the writing process.
Narrating your own character may not seem an easy task at first. But thinking about the past may help you think about your current issues and look at your future from a different perspective.
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Frequently Asked Question
How does an autobiography look like?
Autobiography is about famous people. Like a biography, your autobiography should include information about when and where you were born, how you are like other people who live in the same place, what you like to do, and special events that have happened to you.
What should a short autobiography include?
A short autobiography should include the following points:
- Your name
- Your current job title
- Your company name or personal brand statement
- Your hometown
- Your alma mater
- Your personal and professional goals
- A relevant achievement or accomplishment
- Your hobbies.
Is autobiography written in the first person?
An autobiography is a story about the author's life. It can be written in first-person, which means you can use "I" and "me." But most academic writing for college does not allow you to use I or me.