Earlier this week, I had the privilege of meeting with the Central Florida Genealogy Society at the Seminole County Library in Casselberry, Florida. This amazing group gathered to participate in my timelines presentation where I talked about different timeline styles, what kinds of information to include on a timeline, timeline-creation technology, and the benefits of creating a timeline of your personal and family history. It really is an invaluable tool for anyone writing life-based stories. We had a lively group who asked lots of great questions and inspired some interesting discussion. Thanks so much for your warm welcome and enthusiasm!
Congratulations to prize winner, Jean Jonas, who received a free Writing Your Life video of her choice to start her writing library. I would love to hear more about how she breathes life into the stories of her ancestors by including good dialogue into her writing.
One of the reasons I love the work I do is the community that has grown over the years. I enjoy hearing a workshop participant remind me that he/she met me five years ago at another presentation I gave and how the information impacted his/her work. It warms my heart to see familiar faces and the encouragement shared among group members. It makes what I do so worth it.
Elaine Powell, Central Florida Genealogy Society president, surprised me at the end of my presentation with a touching story and a token of her appreciation. She said she heard me speak many years ago, and that talk made her realize that her father never spoke about his World War II experiences. So, she asked him to write about them, and he did—thirty-eight handwritten pages of memories. Elaine said these precious moments would not have existed had she not heard my message about the importance of writing life stories and asking the important questions before it’s too late.
Elaine presented me with a pillow she saw in a store one day many months ago that reminded her of me. It featured an old Remington typewriter—the kind I learned to type on—with an admonition at the bottom that reads, “Write your own story.” Elaine’s story about her father and her thoughtfulness brought tears to my eyes. Thank you, Elaine. Your gift has assumed a position of importance in the room in my home dedicated to writing and teaching.
I’d love to continue this journey with you, CFGS members, and I have many upcoming opportunities to make that possible. Please consider investing a bit more time and energy into preserving your and your family’s stories. It is time well spent.
Thanks for being such a great group!