Monday, June 9, 2014

How To Write an Inspirational Memoir (Free e-book!)

How To Write Inspirational Memoir (FREE e-book!) by Emily T. Wierenga

I started writing my memoir back when Mum got sick, back when I moved home from Korea to take care of her.
I started it in the basement of my parents’ home, my husband still in Korea finishing up our contract.
I started writing it to save myself in those long lonely hours, when I wrote about Mum–the woman who’d cradled me as a baby under African skies, who’d baked us homemade bread and granola and home schooled us at the kitchen table–who now lay upstairs, dying from brain cancer.

But the story didn’t become a book until this past January, when I was in Portland, Oregon, visiting my agent.
She looked at me as we drove to a yogurt cafe and said, “An editor has contacted me from Baker Books, and he was wondering if you’d want to write a travel memoir?”
A travel memoir.
(Truth be told, I didn’t know what that was–but I knew I loved to travel, and I was secretly hoping this would excuse me taking a year off to travel the world :))
I missed home
It didn’t, but I got to write about my journeys to places like Holland, Lebanon, Jordan, Australia, Korea, China, Japan, Thailand, Italy.
I got to write about love — about Trenton, a farm-boy whom God sent into my life to show me what faithfulness looks like, what a belly laugh sounds like.
I got to write about trying to have children, and how we couldn't, and then, because of mercy, we could.
About those long years of me not eating, and then, learning how, again, over a sizzling bowl of bip-im-bap in Korea.
And I got to write about God, about the way his Father-heart pursued me around the globe and back again to the side of my mother’s bed. This disillusioned pastor’s daughter searching the world for what true faith looks like–and finding it at home.
aching pulsing places_1
It’s a two-book series, actually, with Baker Books. First, #ATLASGIRL.
Then, I have a follow-up memoir coming out next summer (July 2015), called MAKING IT HOME–because isn’t this is what all of us is trying to do? We’re all just trying to make it home.
But it starts with running away, which is what I did at 18.
This, from the back cover:
“Disillusioned and yearning for freedom, Emily Wierenga left home at age eighteen with no intention of ever returning. Broken down by organized religion, a childhood battle with anorexia, and her parents’ rigidity, she set out to find God somewhere else–anywhere else. Her travels took her across Canada, Central America, the United States, the Middle East, Asia, and Australia. She had no idea that her faith was waiting for her the whole time–in the place she least expected it.
Poignant and passionate, Atlas Girl is a very personal story of a universal yearning for home and the assurance that we are known, forgiven, and beloved. Readers will find in this memoir a true description of living faith as a two-way pursuit in a world fraught with distraction. Anyone who wrestles with the brokenness we find in the world will love this emotional journey into the arms of the God who heals all wounds.”
#ATLASGIRL releases July 1st. (Go HERE to read the first two chapters for FREE!)
And I’m not sure how to say this without making myself sound all wonderful, because trust me, I’m not–I’m so very broken, but  all of the proceeds from Atlas Girl are going towards a non-profit I’ve founded with the help of some incredible friends, including Joy Forney (who lives in Kampala, Uganda with her family) and Mama Evah, whom I met back in January in Uganda.
And, as a thank-you for pre-ordering my story, friends? I have a gift for you!
Memoir teacher Mick Silva (who was one of the editors for Atlas Girl) and I have written an e-book  called A House that God Built: 7 Essentials to Writing Inspirational Memoir.
A House that God Built Cover
It’s absolutely FREE when you purchase #AtlasGirl HERE.
After you’ve pre-ordered Atlas Girl, just go HERE and fill out a simple form and the e-book on how to write memoir will be sent IMMEDIATELY to your inbox.

And finally, for all of you who want to share about this post and help get word out about ATLAS GIRL and The Lulu Tree, I’m entering you into a draw to win one of Krafty Kash’s beautiful custom-designed atlas necklaces.
Thank you friends, for traveling with this broken #AtlasGirl. It’s been a long road home, but life is about the journey, not the destination.
… I love you so very much. e.
(PS. For any of you wanting to join the ATLAS GIRL BLOG TOUR, who haven’t already, just go HERE on FB ! We’d love to have you. Also, there are a LOT of resources over HERE if you’re wanting to help us spread the word about the book. XOXO)

Visit Emily Wierenga at

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