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Old 05-06-2013, 08:22 PM
 
9,468 posts, read 15,054,837 times
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Has anyone thought to write a book about themselves and family? Ok, I don't mean a fictionalized best-seller lol- just a private printing book about themselves and family.

In the process of doing my genealogy, I've come across many little fun facts that will probably be lost over time. I've been keeping a notebook of sorts and thinking of putting it in some sort of book form, along with photos, etc. Its amazing how much trivia we can collect while deep diving for our roots! Ummm....is it a form of self-indulgence? We all have/had lives, who cares? But now that I've gathered so much data, I'd hate to see it just disperse again. My interest in geneaology started when I simply wanted to find my grand-aunt's married name, and found enough stuff to write a book about here alone!

So, does it sound like something a crazy old lady would do in her lonely hours? Or is it an acceptable hobby? Anyone else do something similar? Comments?
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Old 05-06-2013, 09:11 PM
 
Location: Little Rock AR USA
2,457 posts, read 6,099,989 times
Reputation: 1863
I have never written a book but have had several short stories (historical and family) published in regional pubs. I have been a resource for a book on the Korea War and a series of genealogy books. I am now a resource for a railroad history. I wrote that to validate this; I have been selling the genealogy books and looks like I will be "eating" some of them. Some I sold at below cost just to get them out of the way.

It is a pain in the tail and extremely time consuming even with the computer programs that will let you "self publish". If you take your material to a publisher or high quality print shop it is very expensive. But, if you decide to write and publish, it is very satisfying and gratifying to look at it and say "I really did that". Good luck, and have fun.
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Old 05-06-2013, 11:15 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArkansasSlim View Post
I have never written a book but have had several short stories (historical and family) published in regional pubs. I have been a resource for a book on the Korea War and a series of genealogy books. I am now a resource for a railroad history. I wrote that to validate this; I have been selling the genealogy books and looks like I will be "eating" some of them. Some I sold at below cost just to get them out of the way.

It is a pain in the tail and extremely time consuming even with the computer programs that will let you "self publish". If you take your material to a publisher or high quality print shop it is very expensive. But, if you decide to write and publish, it is very satisfying and gratifying to look at it and say "I really did that". Good luck, and have fun.

So, you're a resource for a RR industry? would you happen to have any resources, sites, etc for B & O?

Well, I guess I'm not so much looking at writing a book, but just somehow compiling the information I've found. Perhaps on a thumb drive? Sad part is, I'm sort of the end of the line for my geneaology. sure, there's scattered cousins, etc, but no real direct connections. My kids are adopted and really don't care. Perhaps just put everything I have on ancestry or other websites so perhaps those in the future who are doing research might stumble on Great Aunt Edna? Or, just...let it be....
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Old 05-07-2013, 12:38 AM
 
Location: Western Bexar County
3,823 posts, read 13,147,217 times
Reputation: 1895
Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryleeII View Post
Has anyone thought to write a book about themselves and family? Ok, I don't mean a fictionalized best-seller lol- just a private printing book about themselves and family.

In the process of doing my genealogy, I've come across many little fun facts that will probably be lost over time. I've been keeping a notebook of sorts and thinking of putting it in some sort of book form, along with photos, etc. Its amazing how much trivia we can collect while deep diving for our roots! Ummm....is it a form of self-indulgence? We all have/had lives, who cares? But now that I've gathered so much data, I'd hate to see it just disperse again. My interest in genealogy started when I simply wanted to find my grand-aunt's married name, and found enough stuff to write a book about here alone!

So, does it sound like something a crazy old lady would do in her lonely hours? Or is it an acceptable hobby? Anyone else do something similar? Comments?
Many years ago I did a newsletter that my relatives liked. In each issue I included one ancestor's history, something about the Irish, a place name that included our family name, a famous person with the same family name, and a product invented by a person with our name. During Mother's/Father's Day I would list persons that fit in that category and what generation they were. The same goes for veterans on those holidays.

I am thinking of writing a quasi-book starting with the furthest person back to present for paternal side and another one for the maternal side. I'll include historical facts along with pictures.
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Old 05-07-2013, 05:11 AM
 
Location: Colorado (PA at heart)
8,234 posts, read 12,841,534 times
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Writing it a huge part of genealogy, whatever form you choose to do it in. Ancestry.com have a publishing feature with MyCanvas and I have produced a book through them but sadly, I did so too soon as I continued to discover so much more and the book is now missing a lot of information. Also, MyCanvas is designed more for image based books and though I have a lot of photos, I also have a lot of text so I'm now looking for something that suits both.

Every February there is a Writing Challenge in the family history blog world: The Family History Writing Challenge

I don't do it because I think I'm a good writer - I do it because I started noticing that there were parts of my ancestors stories which weren't very obvious from just looking at their vital data or profile in my tree. Things like how old a woman was when she first or last gave birth. Also, my grandmother had left a lot of notes and info she collected from her parents and grandparents which include personal stories no other record could tell me. I wanted to put it all together in one place so I started making a written history of each family in my tree. Each surname gets a chapter and the chapter ends when the surname gets "daughtered out". I've got each chapter up on my blog (down the right hand side): Genealogical Musings
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Old 05-07-2013, 08:52 AM
 
9,468 posts, read 15,054,837 times
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Thanks for all the suggestions! I will consider them.....

It would be a true shame not to at least compile all the data/information I've found. Actually, I inherited a fair amount of "data",including old photo albums, boxes of old letters, postcards, and a genealogy a cousin started many years ago on my mother's side. In it he says he hopes it will fall into the hands of the one most interested in adding to it. How prophetic--like the torch has been passed to me! I also found an extensive genealogy on my father's side, bound, with pictures, stories, etc. What a treasure!

I always assumed my family "came over" via immigration during the 1800's, but not the case. Seems my ancestors have been here since....I can trace some to Scotland ~ 1600, but my father's side just seems to go on and on back into the mist of Applaichia....I also found I'm part Cherokee! All this should really be compiled somehow.....
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Old 05-07-2013, 12:11 PM
 
Location: Little Rock AR USA
2,457 posts, read 6,099,989 times
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Marylee, I'm sorry but I don't have anything on the B & O. "My" RR is a short line in Clark and Pike Counties AR built around 1900 and abandoned about three years ago. They have now taken up the rails and some of us are trying to get it added to the Rails-to-Trails program. I have posted several photos on the Arkansas Link of City-Data and the Thread "Exploring Arkansas".
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:30 PM
 
1,097 posts, read 1,661,605 times
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Several cousins self-published parts of my extended family - - went to family & interested cousins [of which you probably have more than you think]. They also deposited copies in whatever archives, historical societies, even the LDS library for future researchers. They were labors of love, time consuming, tons of correspondence with cousins. They would do it again.

Last edited by nj185; 05-07-2013 at 07:47 PM..
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Old 05-07-2013, 08:16 PM
 
9,468 posts, read 15,054,837 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nj185 View Post
Several cousins self-published parts of my extended family - - went to family & interested cousins [of which you probably have more than you think]. They also deposited copies in whatever archives, historical societies, even the LDS library for future researchers. They were labors of love, time consuming, tons of correspondence with cousins. They would do it again.

This sounds like what I'd like to do! Put my ancestors out there for the future, so they're not forgotten. The LDS library is also a great suggestion! Guess I will have enough to keep me busy for awhile!
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:48 PM
 
Location: too far from the sea
18,084 posts, read 17,217,450 times
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Even if you just used Ancestry, they do have places for notes, stories, comments. I feel the same way, that we are responsible for saving all of it and if we don't do it, then it will be lost.

I don't think it's at all silly for you to do this. Think of yourself as a family historian. There are people with PhDs in history and you're in the same category only you're not getting paid or getting the acknowledgement. I think someone on here said that if you put it on Ancestry, it will always be there. That way, if someone related to you, even distantly, ever wanted to know more, your stories would be there for them.

Whatever venue you choose, I think you should do it.
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