By Shannon Bennett, Student
Until a few years ago I didn’t think of myself as a writer. Lab reports, I could write those, they were methodical and easy. Or at least I thought so. Too many times through my education I was told that I didn’t have “it” for writing. Mainly the “it” referred to the rules of grammar, spelling, and punctuation. The bane of my primary school years were all those rules that made my head hurt.
However, give me a good creative writing assignment and I was off. In fact in 9th and 11th grade I placed in school-wide writing competitions that didn’t necessarily care about the intricacies of the English language, but focused on the content of the prose. Now that I am researching and documenting my family history I write more and more each day.
With the increase in my writing came a knowledge that writing for the purposes of genealogy was a whole new ball game for me. What in the world was I in for? At the time I read genealogy magazines and journals looking at them like they were a foreign language. Blogs on every topic were available, and I quickly fell into writing my own. My writing evolved and took on a life of its own. But, was there more to it than what I was already doing? I honestly didn’t know.
Which is why I am here. This course, Writing for Genealogy: Articles, Blogs, Research Reports and so much more , looked fascinating to me. Secretly I hope that I will learn some pointers on becoming a better writer as well as learning more about what it means to write in the genealogy world. Really, any pointers would be great.
From the syllabus it looks like our instructor, Jennifer Holik, covers many forms of writing that a genealogist could be involved in. Everything from small scale to large publications and society level to national. Students who takes this course should have a good starting point for any type of genealogical writing they may want to do.
In particular I am interested to hear what she says about blogs (since I write one), marketing (because everyone should know a little about that), and her opinions on speaking (particularly contracts). I am certain I will pick up something new, and if you are just getting started the syllabus looks like a very complete guide to get you off and running on this endeavor.
Off I go to start the first modules.
See you online!