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Below is a list of Writing Ideas to help you with your biography.
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Which branch did you serve in? What was your rank? Did you enlist or were you drafted? How did you feel about the draft? Were you philosophically or politically opposed to serving in the military or were you proud to serve your country?
Describe basic training. Who was your commanding officer? Who were your peers? Where and for how long were you trained? What did you learn?
Did you have trouble getting along with anyone in your unit? Why? What became of it? How did you deal with it?
Did you have a nickname? What were the memorable nicknames of others?
How did you feel about sharing your space with others? Did it feel cramped at first? Was it easy to get used to?
What was your most vivid memory of this time? Specific people or places? A certain event?
Which weapons were you trained to use? How did you feel about using weapons? Were you comfortable with one in particular?
Were you especially skilled at one particular task? Did it become your "specialty"?
Did basic training build up or cut down your self-confidence? Why or why not? Did you feel as if you were well-prepared for your duties? Did it turn out that you were prepared?
Where were you stationed after basic training? What were the people and the surrounding area like?
How did you keep in touch with your friends and family back home during this time? Did you save any letters from this time?
Which battles did you fight in? Describe the time, place, number of participants, and what happened. How did these battles affect the war as a whole? What role did your unit play in these battles?
Did you become close friends with any of those you fought with? Did you keep in touch in later years? Did you save any of their lives? Did they save yours?
Were you injured in any way? Describe what happened. What went through your mind when you realized you were hurt?
If you were injured, did you heal quickly or not? Did you return to the fighting, or were you sent home? How did it change you in ways that you still noticed years later?
Did you ever need to take someone's life? Describe the experience.
Why did you leave the service? Honorable discharge? Injury? End of active duty? Describe the circumstances and how you felt about them.
What did you find when you returned home? Did you receive a cool reception from those opposed to the war? Did you feel proud for having served, but at the same time avoid talking about it to others?
Were you able to return to "normal functioning"? Was it easy to put it all behind you and get on with your life, or did you have to struggle? What was hardest to adjust to once you returned?
Was there someone or something that was helpful in getting you through this time of adjustment? Could you suggest anything helpful to someone going through a similar situation?
From your perspective, when was the war over? When the peace treaty was signed in 1973? When you came home?
After all was said and done, what did you learn from your experiences in the military? Why were these lessons valuable to you? How did they change you and your ideas or values?
How would you be different if you had never had these experiences?
What sort of memorabilia did you save from this time? What did it symbolize to you? What memories and feelings did it bring back in later years?