As a personal historian, I work with those who don’t want to go it alone creating a book, picture archive or video of their life stories. But if you’ve decided to dive in on your own, I offer this crucial tip: Read.
As a part of my ongoing study of the art of life storytelling, I read autobiographies, biographies, and memoir. I love the genre. With each book, I learn something new about structure and style that I can incorporate into the work I do for my clients.
There are many approaches to consider in determining the best format to tell your life stories—autobiography, memoir, poetry, essay, photo montage, audio, and video. Knowing what will be best for you will take some thought. Reading and viewing others' work will help spark your creativity.
In 2015, it occurred to me there might be others who enjoy reading about real lives and sharing their insights in a formal book group. I launched The Real Lives Book Club (RLBC) via Meet-up.com and since then we have garnered more than 150 members with a dozen regular attendees. They have impacted my reading by bringing their reflections to a lively discussion each month.
To decide how best to share your life stories, read real life stories. Better yet, join with the RLBC, meet great people and take advantage of our reading list for 2016. We meet May 25, to discuss "The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin," details here. "The Year of Magical Thinking" by Joan Didion in June, details here.
We offer consulting to help people organize and archive photos, media, and other memorabilia.
Contact us to start saving your family history today. Our phone number is 515.707.9455.