Episode 20 : Record a Life Story then Write a Biography

by Ian

in Conversation, Editing, Motivation, Podcast, Text

Recording your stories is the easiest start to writing your Life Story

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You have an idea to write a biography, of yourself or someone else. You know there are many things to discover, share and get off your chest. Maybe you’ve even written a first draft of this biography but at least you have a stack of mental points to discuss, maybe you just have a long list notes or a few pages written down but then you’ve became distracted.

Record and Write a Biography

Record a Biography

You know that you have to get on with this project at some stage and that you only have limited time but there is just so many things to do and it’s hard to know how to get going again. It’s starting to seem too hard. Lets look at a simple mechanism that we have all been using our entire life – Conversation!

For some people writing is a gift and the easiest way of capturing a Life Story as a biography. For others writing is a struggle but it’s the only way that they have ever considered recording a Life Story, however if you’re here on Create Your Life Story, you are at least now considered a new possibility. We don’t need to choose between written or recorded but use them hand in hand to gather all the information in one place. Should you write or should you record? Why not both!

It starts as an idea but to be more than that we need to develop a route to success, then eventually we have a Life Story recorded and written. Here is the strategy:

  1. Write notes, outlines and prompts
  2. Flush out ideas with individual specific questions and story prompts
  3. Record audio conversations about each of these stories
  4. Edit the audio recordings
  5. Transcribe audio into a rough manuscript
  6. Edit transcript using original outline as a guide but modifying to suit the changes from the conversations
  7. Complete editing into a biography

The first two points are the easiest after the initial inspiration. It’s just a long list of ideas to mention based on knowledge. Many people start to build on the notes, developing longer descriptions of the each of these initial notes eventually ending with a pile of roughed subjects or a journal of individual stories.

The commitment is in taking the ideas and notes and developing them further. This is where most people come unstuck as they don’t know how to pull all these individual pieces of information together into one cohesive piece. Here is where recording the conversations of a person comes into play as a powerful tool.

With your notes as a guide sit and record the recollections and stories of this persons life in a conversation. If you are on your own, record yourself using storytelling techniques. Take your time and use all of your resources to create rich dynamic stories of what it was like in these times as you remember them.

Then through audio editing, the extraneous information is removed and the finished audio can be published “as is”, as a personal spoken history of this life in all it’s naturally spoken style.

The finished audio in next transcribed into text to become the perfect raw material for creating a written biography. With the power of word processing on your computer you can cut and past sections adding additional linking explanations and story writing devices such as plot, character and pace to build an emotional thematic reading experience.

If you feel that the task is a bit beyond you the biography can be
written in it’s entirety from your transcription by a ghost writer then either way it can handed over to a professional editor to create the final draft.

Writing is a skill that takes decades to acquire and for most people to simply sit down and start to write a biography is a huge task. Despite the best of intentions many great stories only ever get to the initial note writing stage where they are left to languish until it’s too late and the moment is lost. By taking those notes and using them as the catalyst to record some great conversations and stories we have a natural progression through conversation towards gathering the information that is need for a written biography of a Life Story.

Using the power of a recorded conversation to generate the raw material in the transcription is the simplest and easiest way to have tangible content to work with in a motivated way, rather than to be simply staring at a blank page not knowing where to start.


  • Recover or generate starting notes of topics to include in a recorded conversation
  • Record the Life Story conversation
  • Edit audio and transcribe to text
  • Edit transcription into a great literary pieces
  • Publish, on line, e-book, self publish or with a publisher

There are plenty more great ideas in the Free e-Book Recording Life Stories to help you with your entire Life Story project. Just sign up for it in the side bar form.

Do have that pile of notes that have been waiting for you to get motivated? Tell us in the comments below what you can now do to get started on recording a Life Story

Record or Write, Your or My Life Story Biography

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Music is from

Tony Guerrero

“Dizzy Does It”

from “Blue Room”
(Charleston Square Recordings)
Buy at iTunes Music Store
More On This Album

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