Yours Truly Hardcover by James R. Hagerty

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Yours Truly Hardcover by James R. Hagerty

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Product Details

  • Publisher: Citadel (2022-12-27)
  • Language: English
  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • ISBN-13: 9780806542072
  • Item Weight: 311.85 grams
  • Dimensions: 8.54 x 5.73 x 0.84 cm

In a surprisingly upbeat, heartfelt book about a serious subject, The Wall Street Journal’s veteran obituary writer,  award-winning journalist James R. Hagerty, shares his unique skills with those who want to have the last word with flourish, honesty, and even humor.

Whether in-brief for future newspapers and websites, or as a more complete  mini-memoir for friends and family, Yours Truly is a guide to making sure your story is told the way you want – and  how the process of preparing your own life story can help you live a better life.

“Write your own obituary. Intimidating? You bet. Especially if you don't think of yourself as a writer, as few do. James R. Hagerty draws on his experience writing more than 1,000 obituaries to offer tips for telling your own story. Whatever your age or health, an inventory of your life so far can help you decide if you're on the path you intended, and if you aren't, lead you to another.” —

Someday, your life story is likely to be boiled down to a few lines. If you leave things to chance, your obituary is almost sure to be solemn, formulaic, and full of errors—an obligatory final chapter written in haste by others. James R. Hagerty, longtime obit writer for The Wall Street Journal, knows how to get the job done right: Do it yourself, starting now, while you still can. 

In this heartfelt and reassuring guide, Hagerty explains how to preserve your personal history—from crafting a brief obituary for newspapers and websites, to a more thoughtful and detailed mini-memoir for those close to you. Through his personal stories, on-the-job anecdotes, and insights, you will learn what to include, what to leave out, and how to provide historical context, record oral histories and make the most of details, all with candor and wit. Best of all, you’ll find that reviewing your life story helps you think about what you’re doing with your time on Earth and whether you’re on the right path. It isn’t too late to improve the narrative with a stronger ending.

Telling your story your way can be the best gift you ever give to friends and loved ones—and yourself.

"Need to put something in writing? Read this book. Getting words onto a page can be a painful process.  Authors of all abilities, help is within reach!...Hagerty gives advice about how to interview, how to tell a story, what to include and what to omit." - THE NEW YORK TIMES

About the Author

James Robert Hagerty is an author and journalist who has worked at The Wall Street Journal for nearly forty years. He is the paper’s only fulltime obituary writer. His article “An Obituary Writer Writes One for Himself” drew an outpouring of reader responses, which inspired this book. A graduate of the University of North Dakota, he lives in Pittsburgh, PA. Visit him on Facebook or Twitter @JamesRHagerty.

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