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Family memoirs

Since before we could speak, humans have been swapping stories. Around campfires, over the phone, through books...

 
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You've always wanted to record those family memories, but don't know where to start.

Why not start here?

Hiring a writer to facilitate gathering, collating and/or writing life stories means the job gets done. It also means family baggage doesn't get in the way! (Picture Mum's favourite ‘That street always reminds me' story or Grandad's hundredth telling of How I met Gran.) We ask, listen and record the biography with fresh ears and compassion.

Memoirs come in all shapes and sizes. There is no one way to write a memoir. How it unfolds will depend entirely on you, the storyteller. What help you need will depend on what you’ve already got. To explain…

Is your life story...

All in your head?

If it’s all in your head, you have three options!

1. We ask questions about your life to prompt your memories and record your voice telling the stories. (See ‘Hear Them Speak.)

2. We coach you to write your own stories. Using a combination of prompts, writing, chatting and editing, together we’ll come up with a plan for your memoir. This works well if you enjoy writing so won’t find it a chore.

3. We ghostwrite the memoir for you. We chat, record, write, check with you, edit and write some more to shape the story on your behalf. We listen to, collate and write your stories in your tone of voice. Before you know it, we’ve cooked up your biography. This works well if you don't want to write the darn thing, you just want the story told!

All in a box?

If all of your notes and memorabilia are in a box (or three or more …) dust them off and start exploring!

You can pay us to help you sort it, but it’s probably best if you take time to go through it yourself, using our handy guide to help you decide what’s important to your story. (Hint: not everything!)

Already written down? (Or typed up?)

If you’re happy with the story as you’ve written it, you can take it straight to copy editing .

But if you’d like to develop your story further, we can work together through a process we like to call ‘collaborwriting’. In collaborwriting, we read your story then give you specific tips and tools to help you improve it according to your goals. (For example, we can help you express love to a loved one or help you write clearly in English.)

All over the place?

Let’s chat, discuss your needs and come up with a plan together.

 
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Not sure?

We offer three different packages to help you

record your life stories.

 

 

Hear them speak

The sound of their voice brings back so many memories as well as the stories that voice brings with it.

We guide the storyteller through a number of questions to enable and record an enjoyable and supported trip down memory lane. It’s easy to share the finished product – a few hours’ recording of the highlights of their life. Old, young or in the middle, we provide the prompts so that their stories stay with you.

Hear them speak is the simplest service we offer at A story to tell …

The full service includes:

  • Six facilitated weekly ‘chats’
  • Chats are 45 minutes each
  • Final product: an MP3 audio file.

Price:

$975 + travel.*

Don't fret if this is too costly ...

You can make up your own gift for someone or even yourself. If you want to trial our services and/or check in to learn more about the process, you can choose any number of sessions for $195 each. For example, two sessions would cost $390 (+ travel) and provide you with 90 minutes of verbal stories recoded in MP3 format.

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Tell the tale

If you want something to hold, to flick through and pass around to friends and family, this service could be for you.

We prompt the storyteller with various questions that encourages sharing their favourite tales. Sometimes, we even get new ones out of them! Old, young or in the middle, we provide the prompts so that their stories stay with you.

This service includes:

  • Six facilitated weekly ‘chats’
  • Chats 45 minutes each
  • Recorded in MP3 format
  • Each interview transcribed word for word (the ums and false starts removed)
  • ‘Chapters’ read back to and approved by interviewee each week
  • Proofread story
  • Up to twenty photos added
  • Document provided in print-ready format, suitable for printing to A4.

Price:

$4490, including travel within 30 kilometres of Melbourne, Sydney, Bendigo or Woodend CBD, Victoria. (Further away incurs a separate travel charge.)*

Note: Tell the tale can also be divided into smaller chunks, for people who're not sure about the process or don't have a spare five grand! A mini, word-only Tell the tale consists of:

  • One chat of 45 minutes recorded in MP3 format
  • Recording is transcribed. Chapter emailed to client for approval.
  • Final is proofread and ready for printing to A4.
  • (Photos and printing not included in mini Tell the tale.)

Price: $390 + travel.

Want to bring those stories together in a different way? contact us. 

Build the book

Imagine the thrill of your own book in your hot little hands! What a reward for a life well lived.

Starting from handwritten letters, diaries or notes is fine by us. Or we can weave the story together over a series of chats. We’ve worked with people who have been keen to tell their story for years and others who are surprised that someone thinks they might have something to say …

This custom service responds to your needs and guides you through the steps to ensure a beautiful book lands right in your lap. A story to tell can do any or all of the following:

  • Refine the story idea
  • Interview and record the subject
  • Transcribe the interviews
  • Decipher and organise existing material
  • Redraft according to feedback
  • Design the document
  • Liaise with book cover designer and printer.

Prices start from around $8500.

Is it time to start? Contact us.

 

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Our role is to help you tell the best story you can. No matter which stage of the writing process you find yourself in, we offer professional guidance about how to move closer to your writing goal.

Contact us to find out how.

 
 
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