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A message from your brain: I'm not good at remembering what I hear

A message from your brain: I'm not good at remembering what I hear | memoir writing | Scoop.it

"Our auditory memory isn't as robust as we might like to think it is. We think that we are great at integrating all the senses, but the experiment shows that tactile and visual memory easily trumped auditory memory."

Gene Bodzin's insight:

Remember the old telephone game, with each person trying to repeat what the last person said? Here's the reason why the story gets garbled along the way. And also part of the reason why rumors are notoriously unreliable. We do not remember what we hear as well as what we see or touch.

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memoir writing
a look at how we remember and write about the past
Curated by Gene Bodzin
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Welcome to '887,' where memory and the script are fluid 

Welcome to '887,' where memory and the script are fluid  | memoir writing | Scoop.it
The Canadian theater artist Robert Lepage delivers a stunning show about his childhood and the turbulent 1960s.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
There are many stories in the past. Sometimes the act of remembering itself is the story.
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Memories

Memories | memoir writing | Scoop.it
What do we remember and what do we forget, and why? It’s a common belief that when we are sleeping, our subconscious brain sorts through memories and saves what it deems is important and discards the rest. Think about that. Without conscious input, countless value judgments are being made as we sleep. At first thought, …
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Some common questions about the ongoing mystery of what in the brain helps bring memories back.
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The mysterious disappearance—and strange reappearance—of Dr. William Horatio Bates

The mysterious disappearance—and strange reappearance—of Dr. William Horatio Bates | memoir writing | Scoop.it
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Gene Bodzin's insight:
Another strange example of dissociative fugue, this time a noted ophthalmologist who in the early 1900s disappeared twice, proving (in a most non-medical way) that what you get is not always what you see.
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How a young woman lost her identity

How a young woman lost her identity | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Rachel Aviv reports on the disappearances of Hannah Upp.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
A study of dissociation, a rare psychological condition in which people take on another identity. In neither identity can they recognize the other.
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Woman loses memory after experiencing anoxic brain injury

Woman loses memory after experiencing anoxic brain injury | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Alison Sagese went missing for three days in 2000 after experiencing an allergic reaction to antibiotics
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Memory is still a miracle and a mystery. But memory loss can sometimes be traced to a bad prescription.
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Forgetting details, getting the gist may prompt false memories in older adults

Forgetting details, getting the gist may prompt false memories in older adults | memoir writing | Scoop.it
As people age, they may rely on a type of memory — called schematic memory — that helps them remember the gist of an event, or situation, not the details. Relying on this type of memory may lead to the creation of more false memories, which could create confusion.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Or, as Mark Twain said in his autobiography: "When I was younger I could remember anything, whether it had happened or not; but my faculties are decaying, now, and soon I shall be so I cannot remember any but the things that never happened." 
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Are we all suffering from collective amnesia? 

Are we all suffering from collective amnesia?  | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Preserving statues of imperialists and slave owners enforces narratives rather than protecting free speech
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Memory is malleable. This is as true of national memory as for individuals. Public art influences what remains in the collective consciousness.
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‘You must write a memoir as if you’re writing a novel’ 

‘You must write a memoir as if you’re writing a novel’  | memoir writing | Scoop.it
The author of And When Did You Last See Your Father? on his new novel, the story of a literary executor
Gene Bodzin's insight:
"You think you know someone, but actually you don't."
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Memory Laws and Nationalist Lies

Memory Laws and Nationalist Lies | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Memory laws emerged in Western Europe’s old democracies as a means to promote reconciliation after World War II. Now, such laws have become one of the preferred instruments of populists attempting to consolidate their own power – and to incite the very xenophobic nationalism that provided fertile soil for the Holocaust.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
How we remember the past is usually based on our own experience, but in remembering the distant past we depend on historians. Now another wrinkle has been added to the formula.
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The event boundary: a bad memory or great creativity –

The event boundary: a bad memory or great creativity – | memoir writing | Scoop.it
After several mental notes, the passenger-side breakaway mirror on my Jeep was still folded in to the passenger door — useless. Each time I arrived at my destination, I kept forgetting to pull the mirror back out. Because the mirror thing happened multiple times, I took a moment to think and analyze what was happening. The answer wasn’t a bad memory but something called the event boundary. Researcher Gabriel A. Radvansky says that our brains re-set when we cross a threshold. It’s like going to another room to look for our keys — and forgetting why you’re there. A friend in Santa Fe, NM, carried an aluminum dog ladder in the back of her SUV. Her elderly pets used it to climb in and out of the vehicle. I visited and every time we used her vehicle the ladder made a clanking and clattering noise. On one trip, after “forgetting” the ladder yet again, she abruptly pulled over, got out in traffic and set the noisy thing on top of a pillow. Like my mirror, her event boundary kept changing her focus from fixing the noise in back to the restaurant or gallery ahead. Tabula rasa is the Latin term for John Locke’s idea of being born with no innate ideas — a clean slate. As we leave a room, begin a meeting, start the car and cross a threshold, our brain reboots in order to be prepared for upcoming requirements rather than past events. Sometimes annoying, this event boundary un-clutters the mind so we can start fresh. To avoid “forgetting” to do something important for your family or your business, use a physical token before passing through a threshold. Be it a note, a special pen, a paintbrush, a prototype or a rubber band on your wrist, take a symbol from a past world into your new space. All your brain needs is a gentle reminder on the dashboard or the boardroom. The event boundary (also boundary effect or doorway effect) can be useful for strategically invigorating our creative juices. This means purposely crossing a boundary to let our minds wander. Many inventors hit the jackpot while engaging in off-task behaviors such as bicycling, walking or in the case of Archimedes and his theories of water displacement, taking a bath. If you want to be creative — move to another room. When you need to innovate — go somewhere else. My personal story involves a type of plagiarism. Referred to as “unconscious plagiarism,” it’s when a musician hears a tune and unknowingly uses it later — George Harrison; Sam Smith. Or, an author strings lines of ideas together not remembering where he or she found the exact same words — Mark Twain; Helen Keller; Joe Biden. In my case, a gentleman implied ownership of my invention.  He liberally referenced the technique when I was clearly documented as being the originator.  He published an average video recounting how he had leveraged the tool to win …
Gene Bodzin's insight:
More about the limits of memory.
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My grandfather’s memory book

My grandfather’s memory book | memoir writing | Scoop.it
When he died, Byron Levy left behind a vast inheritance — of drawings.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
One of the best ways of remembering the past is to document it as it happens. If you never publish your thousands of notebooks, your children will have enough reading to keep themselves occupied for the rest of their lives.
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Lying down in the dirt

Lying down in the dirt | memoir writing | Scoop.it
“I thought I’d never publish these things. I thought it was important for me to hide the fact that I'm not right in the head.”
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Exposing yourself to others is difficult, but it is necessary when you have to be honest with yourself.
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Does it matter if authors make up their memoirs?

Does it matter if authors make up their memoirs? | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Joseph Conrad invented a boat, HG Wells omitted his affairs. But does it matter if this imaginative licence reveals a different kind of truth, asks Jerome Boyd Maunsell
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Another look at the thin line separating fact from fiction, leaving the questions, Do readers have any reason to expect truth in life stories? And, if so, What kind of truth?
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Write your memoir simply for your families

Write your memoir simply for your families | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Have you written your memoir yet? I haven’t. I hadn’t even thought about writing a memoir until the other day. A friend suggested I write mine. You probably all know my response; I laughed.

Writing memoirs seems to be all the rage these days for the rich and famous. Many of my favorite soap opera
Gene Bodzin's insight:
There is writing and there is publishing. There is writing for the whole world, and there is writing for the people who really care. The one does not imply the other.
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What smartphone photography is doing to our memories

What smartphone photography is doing to our memories | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Sharing photos may subtly change what — and how — we remember.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
What happens to our memories when we pay more attention to our cameras than to the world around us?
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My top ten rules for memoir writing

My top ten rules for memoir writing | memoir writing | Scoop.it
1. Memoir isn’t autobiography. Don't give us your whole life; tell us a story from within it. 2. Find your narrative arc early on, and you’ll avoid having to trash a lot of your work. 3
Gene Bodzin's insight:
We haven't looked at the basics for a while. Here they are again.
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Five of the most outrageously fake memoirs ever written

Five of the most outrageously fake memoirs ever written | memoir writing | Scoop.it
It's expected that memoirs bend the facts a bit to form a coherent narrative. These books have leapfrogged past that straight into fiction, earning their classification as fake memoirs. Here are 5 "nonfiction" stories that are nowhere near true.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
There is life and there are stories about life. And there are stories about lives that were never lived.
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I regret writing the memoir; If and when I write something, I will write ONLY LIES

I regret writing the memoir; If and when I write something, I will write ONLY LIES | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Nawazuddin Siddiqui had released his memoir, An Ordinary Life recently. The book chronicled his struggles and achievements. Owing to severe backlash, Nawazuddin had then withdrawn his book. He spoke to a leading daily and said that he regrets writing it.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Sometimes writing the truth conflicts with our need to live in the real world.
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Edward Cornwallis, public memory, and Canadian nationalism

Edward Cornwallis, public memory, and Canadian nationalism | memoir writing | Scoop.it
By Tom Fraser On January 30th 2018, Halifax Regional Council voted 12-4 in favour of the immediate removal of the statue of Edward Cornwallis which has stood upon a plinth in the city’s south end s…
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Some history is unpleasant to recall. There is an ongoing  (and irresolvable) debate as to whether it is better for a society to air its dirty laundry, to whitewash it, or to shove it under the carpet.
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Why ‘left-handed’ writing matters

Why ‘left-handed’ writing matters | memoir writing | Scoop.it
For so long now have I felt that a writer reveals himself best in his shorter non-fiction that it has remained an illogical and unexamined ‘fact’. There is, of course, a rational part of me which susp
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Anton Chekhov said that it is in beginnings and endings that writers lie the most. Here is a writer who tries to understand where most of the truth comes from.
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Don’t worry about forgetting your childhood memories

Gene Bodzin's insight:
If we don't remember many early events in life, it may be because we don't keep on reviewing them.
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Why Chelene Knight wrote letters to the current occupants of the houses she lived in growing up 

Why Chelene Knight wrote letters to the current occupants of the houses she lived in growing up  | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Dear Current Occupant mixes poetry and prose to tell a story about home and belonging, set in the 1980s and 1990s of Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Memoirs that are thematic rather than chronological dredge up memories that might not otherwise arise.
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Memory-loss woman cries every single day when she learns that her husband divorced her after she got ill

Memory-loss woman cries every single day when she learns that her husband divorced her after she got ill | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Veronika Mescheryakova suffers from a form of porphyria which affects her nervous system
Gene Bodzin's insight:
This is a terrifying variation on the Groundhog Day story.
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How to write a memoir while grieving

How to write a memoir while grieving | memoir writing | Scoop.it
Nicole Chung contemplates loss, adoption, and working on a book her late father won't get to see.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Many memoirists write in fear of whether the people closest to them, the subjects of their writing, will accept the way they describe the past. But anything can happen if they persist with their truth. 
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The scientific way to design a customer experience for maximum retention (and results)

The scientific way to design a customer experience for maximum retention (and results) | memoir writing | Scoop.it
To get the biggest payoff for your efforts crafting a customer experience, it's essential to understand how customer memory works. Here's what the scientific disciplines of social psychology and behavioral economics have to say, as viewed through the author's lens as a customer experience designer.
Gene Bodzin's insight:
Here is neuroscience seen as an adjunct to consumerism. 
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