Write an autobiography.300 words  

Expert Answers
Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This has always intrigued me as an assignment to give to students.  There are so many ways that this can be pursued.  One could approach it in a direct manner, a la David Copperfield, where one takes the story of their lives from the earliest moments and analyzes different components as the work seeks to develop a sense of identity.  Another approach is to combine the notion of the bildungsroman, the coming of age, within the social fabric of the time.  This can be seen in works like The Autobiography of Malcolm X or Coming of Age in Mississippi by Anne Moody.  These works accomplish much in detailing the life of the individual within a social understanding that impacts their development.   In terms of writing your own autobiography, I think that you have to determine how you want this to develop.  I think that being able to combine the narrative structure with some aspect of experiences that left their defining mark on you would be critical.  Perhaps, a personalized time line that starts out on the left side at your birth and then continues until right now would allow the chance to sort of "plot out" the essential moments in your life and allow you to discover which moments would generate the most amount of writing and discourse.  I would also suggest that individuals and autobiographies tend to be enhanced when the author can connect their own experiences to those of the reader.  This can be done through analyzing social fabrics, but also through use of art, music, film, television, literature, or any other tool that can develop a shared experience between both the writer and the reader.