Is that a memoir or a family history you’re writing?

Writing teacher and author Lynette Benton, who writes the much-visited Polish and Publish blog, recently asked me for my thoughts on the differences between memoir and family history. While the question was prompted by a student asking for clarification during one of her classes, for Lynette the answer was vexed and personal. She is working on a book about her family’s relationship to money. How could she tell if she was writing a memoir or a family history?

Here are my thoughts on the distinction, posted on her blog. I’m hoping they will prompt a few comments and even start a debate among those who care about such things. And many thanks to Lynette for the opportunity to talk to some of her readers.

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