Soul Surfer By William Zinsser: A Brief Analysis

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In How to Write a Memoir, William Zinsser gives information to encourage his writers. Such as, “Be Yourself,” “Speak Freely,” and “Think Small.” Some memoirs follow what he does, and some do not. In this memoir, “Soul Surfer,” Bethany Hamilton supports Zinsser’s writing ideas through her use of her own point of view, honest storytelling, and a lot of small and past memories. Zinsser says that the best memoirs are written from a child’s point of view. Bethany’s memoir does that well. Basically, she’s telling you about incidents that have happened in many different parts of her life. For example, her shark attack at the age of thirteen. “Then I saw my arm had been bitten off almost to the shoulder.” By the time she arrived to the…show more content…
The chapters are mainly just one word to describe what it’s about. At the end of the chapter “attack,” a Kauai paramedic said this to Bethany, “God will never leave you or forsake you.” In the chapter “surgery” the doctor explained the surgery to the family and she had surgery on her arm. Finally, Bethany Hamilton’s memoir follows Zinsser’s advice to “Think small” as each chapter switches from past to present. The chapters have short titles that show the reader if it is past or present. These memories are important to the reader and author of the memoir because there would not be a memoir without it. For example, after Bethany got out of the hospital, she immediately started training for surfing once she got out of the hospital. This memory is a very strong and inspiring because she learns how to tie her shoes with one hand and surf with one hand. This contains information that we should know. The message is, don’t take body parts for granted. “Soul Surfer” is a collection of past and present memories told from Bethany Hamilton in the present. This Supports Zinsser’s advice in “How to Write a Memoir”

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