Yesterday, I wrote about the memory triggers we all encounter on a daily basis and, as a nonfiction writer, the importance of paying attention to them. Today, I'd like to share a list of memory triggers which can be a huge source of material. Often, these triggers cross our paths unbidden. Other times, perhaps when we are trying to access a stubborn memory, or just find ourselves in need of new ideas, we might want to go in search of a memory trigger. Take a look and consider….
Smells * (studies say this is the MOST potent memory trigger)
Music * (2nd most)
Watching kids / younger people
Old magazines, newspapers
Objects (memorabilia – vintage or antique store)
TV – film – plays
Old greeting cards
Tests, exams, textbooks, report cards, transcript, diploma, certificate
Old business cards
Eavesdropping – strangers/friends - family gatherings – parties – public spaces
Specialty stores & catalogs
Basements – attics – closets – storage unit
Colors, patterns, decorations
Old legal documents – deed, bill of sale, contract
Radio talk shows (especially interview/magazine type, not political)
Events where you are an observer, but not a direct participant
Sections of the newspaper you don't normally read
Parades, public celebrations
Reunions (family, school, work- or hobby-related)
Books you've read and re-read
Did I miss anything?
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