Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Start Writing Your Life Stories – A Free Webinar from FTU

FTU-FreeWebinarFamily Tree University is offering a free webinar entitled Start Writing Your Life Stories, “where Sunny Jane Morton, author of My Life & Times: A Guided Journal For Collecting Your Stories, shares tips and ideas for capturing the stories of a lifetime—whether they’re your own or those of a loved one.”

The one-hour on-demand webinar can be accessed here.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Excuses, Excuses

It’s time to stop whining and start writing!  Head over to Sharon DeBartolo Carmack’s article “Write You Family History:  Get Motivated” to see the top five excuses we use to put off writing our family stories and advice on how to defeat those excuses. 

Yes, I said “we” since I whine about #5 (not “finished” researching) all the time!  But Sharon reminds us that the best way to find the gaps in your research and ultimately those pesky to-do items is by writing out what you’ve already researched.

Read her article to learn about the other four excuses and how you can overcome the whining and start writing!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

CT Society of Genealogists Literary Awards Contest

WritingCompetitionThe Connecticut Society of Genealogists literary contests are underway.  There are two different contests.  Entries for both contests are due by February 15, 2011.  Winners for both contests will be notified by April 1, 2012.

Tell Your Family Story Essay Contest

This contest is open to anyone; winner receives $250.  Entries must be related to New England and not more than 10 pages (double-spaced).  Entries could include family stories, oral histories, diary/journal excerpts, family histories or traditions, or socioeconomic conditions affecting the life on an ancestor.  These essays must convey how it pertains to the author.  Full contest rules and entry form for this contest are available at

25th Annual Literary Awards Contest

This contest is open to anyone, the entry fee is $20.  Entries must be related to New England and have been published in the past five years.  Categories for this contest are:

  • Genealogy (begins with someone in the past and works forward in time) – Awarded $1,000
  • Family History (begins with someone living today or recently and works backward in time) – Awarded $500
  • Genealogical Resource (could include cemetery abstracts, compilations, court records, etc.) – Awarded $500

All entries should include a title page, table of contents, and index.  Books should be bound.  CDs are acceptable provided they have a fully searchable and easy-to-follow name index with page numbers.  Full contest rules and entry form for this contest are available at

Monday, October 3, 2011

SCGS 12th Annual Family History Writing Contest

WritingCompetitionThe Southern California Genealogical Society is holding their annual family history writing competition between November 1 and December 31, 2011.  You do not have to be a member of SCGS to enter, nor does your submission have to relate to California.

Entries must be family or local history articles, which may or may not have been previously published.  The length of the article will determine the category it fits in: 

  Category 1
1,000-2,000 words

1st Place - $200
2nd Place - $100
3rd Place - $50
Category 2
Less than 1,000 words

1st Place - $100
2nd Place - $50
3rd Place - $25

Winners will be notified by May 1, 2012.  Winning entries may be published in SCGS’s quarterly, their website, or an anthology of winners.

For complete rules and how to enter, visit

Good luck!

The Future of Memories

FutureOfMemoriesDenis Barrett Olson put together a digital book that offers up advice and ideas for digitally publishing your family stories.  The Future of Memories “introduces you to these new technologies and shows you how to take advantage of the opportunities they offer to produce quality histories at a reasonable price.”

Currently, you can purchase the book for $2.99 in PDF format through Scribd or as an Kindle eBook through Amazon.  eBook versions for iBook and Nook will be available soon.

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