Writing Your Personal History I intended to write about my research on my uncle Evans' ancestry. Then I intended to write my answers to some technical questions about sorting out multiple data files in PAF (Personal Ancestral File), but my mind keeps coming back to a powerful article at http://www.familyhistoryquickstart.com/writing-your-personal-history/ In part it says, "Instead of starting out chronologically stating your life events (year by year that is), try compiling stories by topic." It then goes on to make numerous great suggestions of topics to write on. Suddenly a light went on! My attempts to keep a journal or personal history have always floundered. I think a year and a half is the maximum I have ever maintained any sort of journal. It tends to degenerate into a boring sameness. Much of my life is very routine and I am (by and large) very comfortable with that. People whose lives are full of danger and excitement tend to come to a short if dramatic end. I have things I still want to accomplish before departing this life. Incurring danger deliberately just so that I can tell everyone that I live dangerously seems rather pointless to me. I get more satisfaction from being in a situation where I can help people in various ways. Writing my personal history by topic seems more interesting because after a page or two, my reader is introduced to a different aspect of my life's experience. So far I have written on housing and on transportation, with many additional topics to cover. And if I never finish, I have at least introduced my family to two topics that they might not have known about me. I think that family histories are important. I suggest that you try this approach to writing your personal history. The link above will help you to get started. Let me know whether it worked for you.
Bill Buchanan is a long-time genealogy enthusiast, living at Onoway, Alberta, Canada.
Main website: http://billbuchanan.byethost17.com This blog will describe my experiences as I research my family history and help others.
- Name: Bill Buchanan
- Location: Onoway, Alberta, Canada
I am a retired online school teacher. During July 2007 - January 2010, and September 2011 until the present I have provided part-time support for http://www.familysearch.org This is very rewarding. My greatest strength in this area is the free genealogy software Personal Ancestral File 5 (PAF5). I continue to help others with PAF and New FamilySearch. See
Since April 2010, I am an assistant director of Edmonton Riverbend Family History Center. I have a FHC blog at Bill's Family History Center Blog For information the Latter-day Saints and family history click http://mormon.org/