The Genealogy Journey

The newbie genealogist's resource for books, mags, databases, and -- of course -- any free research stuff to be found on the Internet.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Family History Writing Contests: Are You Up to the Challenge? If Not, You Can Always Take a Class!

I was reading Megan Smolenyak’s blog on RootsWorld and she mentioned a writing contest for genealogists sponsored by the Southern California Genealogical Society. And no, you don’t have to be from Southern California to enter – anyone in the world can enter as long as they have a juicy story to tell. But hurry, because entries are accepted from Nov. 1 up to Dec. 31, 2006.

After checking that out, I did a search on Google for more such contests. I also found one on The National Genealogical Society (it’s only open to NGS members).

The International Society of Family History Writers and Editors (try to say that in one breath!) also has an annual contest, but the deadline has already passed for 2006. Still, it's not too early to think about entering for 2007. And yes, you do have to be a member of ISFHWE to enter.

During the contest research, I stumbled across the Education category on Cyndi’s List and realized there were classes on how to write about your family history or genealogy:

- Fundamentals of Life Stories Writing

- Biography, Memoir, and Family History Writing

If you’re more interested in just getting the family history basics down on paper (not interested in the creative aspect of it) then check out this free email course.

I’ve taken a few online classes before and enjoyed them. Online classes are convenient and can give you something to look forward to besides the mindless Web surfing. However, you do have to do the assignments on time, or you’ll get behind and want to quit the whole thing. (And if my inner fuddy-duddy nerd spoke out too loudly just there -- well, tough!)

~Mary Kaye

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