I enjoyed the essay very much--and I am glad all sorts of hybrids are being discussed in the New York Times. But, hey, folks: this genre isn't new. There have been writers and readers preferring it for decades--because it solves a conundrum.
A personal example: When I published my second memoir in 1997, I debated its genre. The book was a combination of my stories of loss and change, and good advice I'd received over the decade I went through cancer, bankruptcy, divorce, marriage, and other such upheavals.
Is your book, perhaps, one of these "new" hybrids? Do you straddle the line between a book about yourself and a book for others?
How do you decide? And how is the structure of your book going to be different, depending on which side (self-help? memoir?) you lean toward more?
Many writers are stretching the limits of genre. We may have more to say than just meets one type of audience. We want to touch more people, explore more forms, than just one.
Or are you having the entire manuscript pivot around a life-altering event, such as a death or illness? Then perhaps the memoir part is the most important.
As you look into these questions, make notes. Think about what you're writing, and how it might fit the format you're seeing in these genres.