Personal Publishing

Electronic Publishers: Blogs

The number of genealogy and family history blogs are increasing daily. There’s a very good reason for that – in fact several very good reasons:

  • It’s easy. You don’t need much more than typing skills to get started.
  • It’s social. Thanks to comments, you’ll soon find conversations often develop around a posted article.
  • It’s searchable. Search engines will include your articles in search results and it’s not unusual to connect with research cousins as a result.
  • It’s satisfying. The blog format supports your research style. You can build your family history one story at a time, discuss your research successes and failures, get feedback and help from others or whatever you decide you want to share.

And, while you are using your blog to build and share your research, you are also adding to the online knowledge base available to all of us. You’re quick to pass on news of new online archives available to family historians, but when was the last time you considered that you are also building your own online archive? You are now a publisher!

As a self-publishing author, I know that I am not now – nor ever will be – at the level of a Stephen Ambrose or Alex Hailey. I’m fine with that, but it doesn’t mean the things I publish have no value. Facts are facts regardless of the wordsmithing skills associated with their presentation. The genealogy blogs I read are full of great stories and informative facts. The occasional typo or grammar goof doesn’t spoil my enjoyment. Like most of us, the more I write, the better my writing becomes. The quality of writing I’ve found in the genea-blogging community inspires me to keep striving to improve.

So, enjoy your status as an electronic publisher and keep your research and writing efforts going. You are in control of the works you publish and providing information that will help all of us learn more about the people and places we’re researching.

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