How to Write a Good Autobiography Outline

How to Write a Good Autobiography Outline

Although writing an autobiography outline seems to bother quite a number of students, you no longer have to strain anymore because in this paper, we will offer you the best guidelines with examples on how to write an impeccable piece.

In order for you to understand how to craft a good autobiography outline, it is important that you first get to know what an autobiography is.

An autobiography is defined as the information about an individual’s life as written by him or her. The information describes what the life of that person is all about. When writing an autobiography outline, it is important to bear in mind that there are certain particulars that have to be considered. In this way, you will be able to craft an autobiography that people can easily read, understand and relate to. Of great importance is to always make sure that you use interesting facts to help in giving a comprehensive explanation about yourself.

According to an early Christian leader, Saint Augustine, one of the first people to write an autobiography, ‘’an autobiography is information about one’s own life written by that person. However, it should be noted that as a student, you may be asked to write an autobiography about someone else. This does not change the meaning.

To many people, writing an autobiography is a task that may seem to be quite challenging. However, that should never be the case because we have the best tips that will assist you in crafting an outstanding autobiography.

Whether you are writing your own or helping another person to craft an autobiography, it is important to note that an outline is a key factor to crafting the best piece.

So, what is an autobiography outline?

Based on the definition above, an autobiography outline can simply be described as a layout or rough work of the information to be presented. An outline is an expression of how the facts about the individual’s life will be discussed. This may entail a sequence of events or experiences that you have undergone from childhood to where you are now based on the message that you want to put across through the autobiography.

The outline for your autobiography can be a list of the main events or topics that you would want to cover about yourself. These key moments should be focused on the challenges that you have faced in life and how you have managed to respond to them.

When writing an autobiography outline, it is important to bear in mind that more readers are interested in obstacles than a pack of success stories. However, this does not mean that all events of joy should be ignored in writing an autobiography. The piece should be dramatic enough to grab attention and keep your readers glued to it.

Being dramatic means that although the autobiography should be more focused on the challenges, it should also have bits of information about some of your happiest moments in life. This will assist in breaking the boredom of readers and giving them a sigh of relief.

Steps on how to write an autobiography outline

Writing a good autobiography outline requires you to properly recollect and organize facts about yourself. You have to always begin writing with a plan in mind. An outline will act as your guide in writing the autobiography.

There are various steps that can be taken in crafting the outline of an autobiography. However, below are the simple and easy to follow guidelines on how to go about it.

Begin by writing the title

An autobiography must have a working title that can tell about the entire piece in a single phrase or statement. The title should be short, captivating and give the reader an unavoidable urge of wanting to read the autobiography.

Give a brief introduction

In the introduction, you can include one or two sentences giving the reason why you are writing the autobiography. Indicating the focus of the autobiography will make it easier for you in writing the outline since you will know the direction to pursue. People write autobiographies for various reasons including passing on information to future generations, preservation of family history, processing experiences among others.

Create chronological subheadings or subtitles

In order to ensure that all the information that you need is presented in the autobiography systematically, it is important to have different categories to write on. These may include sub titles like, childhood, teenage, middle age, adulthood. On the other hand, you may also arrange your autobiography in terms of locations in case you have spent your life in various places. However, you may also use any other criteria that you may deem fit.

Write a few key points

After you have created the subheadings, it is important to write down a few main events of your life under each. These should be marked with numbers or bullets. Besides, it is also ideal that you include dates or ages alongside every event that you have highlighted to make it easier for you to remember what to cover under each one.

Expound on the listed facts or events

After you have listed all the events that you may want to discuss in the autobiography outline, embark on giving a more elaborate account of each. The facts presented should be supported by dates, names and other information that can explain further what took place and its significance in your life. This should include all the details that you can remember.

Review the facts

In order to make sure that your autobiography outline is accurate and according to your needs, you have to cross check the information presented therein. At this stage, you may remove unwanted parts, add more information or make corrections. The outline should contain the required information without too much exaggeration or inadequacy.

Tips for writing a good autobiography outline

With an outstanding autobiography outline, there is no doubt that you will always have an impeccable autobiography. The following are some of the things that you should always give precedence while writing the outline.

  • The story should always be presented in first person. This means that even if you are writing for another person, you should write as if the story is your own. It should appear like you are communicating directly to the reader.
  • Focus on the core events. There may be so much about yourself that you would want to share in the autobiography. However, it is important to always remain focused on the reason for writing the autobiography. In short, be relevant to the objective of the autobiography.
  • Points should be presented in proper order. To give your readers information that flows smoothly, it is important to have an order of events. For instance, childhood, teenage, youth, adulthood. Do not force the points but present each in a natural flow.
  • Learn to use more concrete details instead of abstract phrases. It is true that some readers may not easily tell whether you have used concrete or abstract terms. However, using concrete details is important in giving your work an edge above the rest since it will enhance the flow and tone.
  • Take time to read through every part. Rushing the work will only leave you with lots of mistakes. It is important that you always take a step at a time. This will help you in remembering important events to be included in the autobiography. In case you feel exhausted and not able to remember some things, take a break and get back to it later.
  • Be patient in writing. Remember that there are people who take even years to write an autobiography so do not be in so much hurry. Take time to create a good and comprehensive autobiography outline for an impeccable work.
  • Give highlights about the past, present and future. An autobiography is an illustration of the life of a person and this should entail his or her past experiences, present status and future prospects. To have a better organization of the autobiography, the outline should present facts about what you have been through in the past, your experiences at the moment and outlook of the future in that order. However, all these should be in line with the reason for writing the autobiography.
  • Remember to tie up loose ends. In the outline, you should also craft a conclusion that will be the final part of the autobiography. In this section, you should write a paragraph or two to close in the gaps created in the introduction and body of the autobiography. Bring the autobiography to a smooth end in one piece.
Examples of autobiography outline

The following are some of the links to the best autobiography outline examples to refer to.

Example 1

Example 2            

Example 3

We hope the above guidelines will help you write a great autobiography with ease. Fore more guidelines check out the links provided.


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