Vivien Finch introduces Psst...Memoirs

PUBLISHED: 09:42 24 September 2013 | UPDATED: 09:42 24 September 2013



ruth knight

I am an Essex based writer and have recently set up Psst...Memoirs, a small memoir writing service.


My basic rationale is that everyone has an interesting story to tell. Ordinary people have extraordinary stories – none more so than Essex folk who often have a fascinating history from the War years. Because of the county’s close proximity to London, many families have migrated here and will have a much more chequered blend of experiences.

I started Psst...Memoirs after volunteer work took me into the homes of older people. They always had such amazing tales to tell. Older people are great storehouses of history, with their personal anecdotes and recollections, and these often go unrecorded.

So often, people say to me that they wish they had listened more carefully to stories told by older relatives or friends. Clients themselves say they have often wanted ‘to write their memoirs’.

Now, with Psst...Memoirs, I believe I have found an effective way to tell some of these precious stories and create a unique heirloom book. The process is relaxed. I visit you, the client, for three or four loosely structured sessions where you tell me your story – some aspects having more prominence than others. It really is up to you. From this I create your narrative.


You can provide up to 20 images of your own – favourite photos, documents, objects which are all scanned into the final story. I take a current portrait photo of you and together we go through the final draft. Once we are happy, it is proofed, formatted and goes off to print.

The result is an A6, totally bespoke, attractively-presented, hardbound book which is ideally sized for a jacket pocket or handbag! Clients really enjoy the process, as do I, and love their unique books which are beautifully put together and lovely to handle.

Psst...Memoirs has really taken off. I am fortunate enough to have found an excellent printers in Brightlingsea which specialises in small run and hand binding. The books are very much an Essex product!

I am often commissioned by families or friends who want to mark a special event, anniversary or birthday for a loved one and are looking for a unique family present. Sometimes it is given as a gift. For example, I have just completed one for an elderly gentleman whose neighbours clubbed together to get his memoir written.

It is a small operation at the moment – I work out of an office at the end of the garden – but I am passionate about the fact that each book is completely bespoke. There is no one else out there providing the same service.

For more information, samples and details of different packages, please visit the website or contact me, Vivien, with any query you may have.

Vivien Finch

01702 719078

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