Updated: Nov 5
In memoir, there are three personas: the person, the narrator, and the author.
The person is private, not knowable to readers through the work. He is known to his family and friends, who rarely recognizes him as the narrator of his work, a facet revealed only through the page.
The narrator is the one that exists only within the covers. He feels, suffers, and triumphs on the page. His epiphanies and revelations are not necessarily the same as those of the person, and not necessarily in the order or magnitude represented. He is not only crafted by the prose and the story, but also shaped and nuanced by the readers’ life experience.
The author is the bridge between the two personas above, the public face of the work. He signs publishing contracts, shows up at book readings, speaks to fans, and gives autographs. He answers questions on the behalf of the person as well as the narrator.