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Ridiculous Rules: family history storytelling!

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Ridiculous Rules: family history storytelling!

Are you tired of following rules? Do you want to take some bold steps in writing your blog, telling your story, and sharing the process? This post is for you.

My blog writing on this site and my genealogy stories blog site are often spasmodic and interrupted by life. I set up a timeline, I plan for a post a week, then something happens and I cannot fulfill the goal. Guess what! It doesn’t really matter. No one is going to reprimand me for the infrequency of my blog posts; my readers are just there for the moment.

Rule #1 Write a blog post every week!

Break this rule and be kind to yourself. Writing a blog post happens when the time is right for you, not because you are on a deadline. Well, that is true if you are an independent blogger like me. No one commissions my posts, I just create them when I have something to say. Consistency with the inspiration for my readers is more important than the timing of the posts. If you are a regular reader of this blog, take a look back over the posts I have shared this year, 2022, they are most often themed rather than timed. Today’s post marks the final one in the theme of Blog Post Titles for Blogging in the Past Lane. This was an exercise from my studies with Sarah Cordiner in the August class on How to set up your own Profitable Blog 

  1. The Number One Reason You Should (Do) family history blogging
  2. 5 Simple Steps to An Effective family history blogging Strategy
  3. Got Stuck? Try These Tips to Streamline Your family history blogging
  4. Why Start a Family History Blog
  5. How You Can (Do) family history blogging in 24 Hours or Less for Free
  6. Scrapbooking: Another tool for family history blogging
  7. 10 Ways to Reinvent Your family history blogging
  8. The Biggest Lie In family history blogging
  9. Cool Tips For family history blogging Success
  10. Savvy, Smart, Sexy People Do family history blogging
  11. Push Button Easy: World Class Tools for Family History Preservation
  12. Ridiculous Rules About family history blogging – this one, note how I changed the title slightly.

Do you like to write blog posts about your ancestors? Do they follow a pattern or a formula in their content? Must you always follow the rules for their content? What Rules? Whose Rules?

Rule #2 Follow the same structure for your ancestral stories in blog posts.

Break this rule! I dare you. Skip over the theme, interrupt the flow, break the monotony or just mix it up.

I started this year intending to write to the themes of #52Ancestors52Weeks and I lost the plot a few months in. The first 12 posts for 2022 follow the advice and the weekly themes from Amy Johnson Crow. Then I started another theme called Gone but not Forgotten; see these below.

Writing for these ancestral story blog posts takes time as it requires some research and story planning in the background. My preference now is to go with the flow and focus my research on lines of my family tree that have not yet been brought to light. I keep my notebook beside me at my desk and write up my notes for the next stories as the mood takes me. For instance last week I was intrigued by the release of more records from the county of Surrey, (my home place in the UK) on the FindMyPast website. I entered my paternal line surname into the field to see what it would come up with. There I found some interesting details about my father’s siblings, Uncle Bill and Auntie Imee. My next story will be about their lives, he as a draughtsman in the 1930s and she as an artist in the 1940s. The title of that story will be
Who were the creative people in my ancestry?

Rule #3 Plan your post titles in advance!

That brings me to another rule, always plan your post titles in advance! Now, this rule can be helpful in keeping you on track. For instance, I have now added a draft post in my Writing in Progress blog for the title above. It will help remind me what and who I planned to write about in that post. However, when I get to that post, the title may change slightly depending on what I can reveal about my father’s siblings, William Francis Allery and Irene Priscilla Allery. Further research may bring up other people of interest and other creatives within my ancestry.

Breaking the rules can be liberating in your blog writing. So go ahead, explore and engage your readers with a shift in structure, style, title, and content.

See what is available in my Preserving Family History Academy! Choose a course that will help you learn about the rules of genealogy research, and how to break them. If you have a coupon, it’s 30% off.


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