Saturday, May 19, 2007

Narrative Time Line: A Tip

It occurred to me that one of the reasons I'm having such trouble with the narrative time line is that the categories that Cameron suggests do not feel natural to me: 0-5, 10-15, 15-20, etc. Some of the labels seem a bit misleading too (e.g., 10-15 as pre-adolescent).

I divided my time line into other categories: pre-nursery school, nursery school, elementary school, junior high, high school, college, twenties, thirties, etc. And that seemed to clarify my thinking about different eras.


This Girl Remembers said...

I think you're right about this.

I'm finally ready to jump back into the timeline after a couple of weeks of letting it sit. And in thinking about how to do it I've realized that I really divide sections in my life based on where I was living. (Except for my very early childhood - we lived in three different states before I turned six, so they're all pretty much lumped together.) So...

Birth-5: FL, NJ, TX
6-12: Atlanta
12-18: Cleveland
18-22: College years - Claremont, CA
22-27: Pasadena & Riverside
27-30: Santa Monica

That's MUCH more intuitive for me - my memory seems to be very strongly connected with my sense of physical space. (I remember which year of college certain events happened based on which dorm room I was in at the time - if I can't figure that out then I'm completely lost.) I think this will work.

So it begins, for real this time. Thanks, Ms. T, for getting the thought process started!

Ms. Theologian said...

I'm so glad this was useful. I was afraid it was bossy. It makes a lot of sense to me to connect memory to space too. Of course, I mostly lived in the same space.

I just think Cameron got the categories wrong. Probably right for her, not right for others.

Did you go to Pomona?

This Girl Remembers said...

I did indeed! It was a fabulous experience. And my brother went to Pitzer a few years later.

Ms. Theologian said...

Aw, I really wanted to go to Pomona...but for some reason (my parents) I felt compelled to go to the east coast.

Linera Lucas said...

I have had much resistance to the narrative time line, but am doing it. Sheesh. Games. Toys. Hobbies. Interests. I mean, this is fine for kids, but for grownups? However, I also realize that part of my resistance is that I Do Not Want To Remember The Really Bad Years. So I've just gone ahead and done the best I can, following the catagories and writing down all the stuff that I really would prefer not to remember. And that, I'm pretty damn sure, is the point of the exercise. Treats! I deserve treats! Now! (going downstairs and going to raid the chocolate hoard...)

Ms. Theologian said...

I agree, Linera. This is really hard.

My only hope is that if I remember the bad stuff and write it all down then I'll be able to control bad stuff in my own writing more.