14 August 2012
Tuesday Tip - How to Write a Blog for a Year
I don't know...it just happened!! Holy smokes, I CANNOT believe that it's been a year since I started this blog. I know it's a rather arbitrary milestone, but still. There are 89 of you who follow me, another 18 through NetworkedBlogs, and those that get it by email. Wow. Heck, I didn't think that anyone would read it, and that's the truth.
So, how've I done? You've been very generous in your comments on my posts, and I try to respond to each one. I'm pretty sure you know I put my heart into what I write; I can't really do it any other way. But I'd love to know if there are things you'd like to hear more about, or less about. I recognize much of this has become more personal than I ever intended, but hey, it's my blog and it's my genealogy. 50 years from now I want my 4th cousin 6 times removed to have a decent picture of who I am, because this'll probably be the only way that'll happen. But if you don't want to hear about my fitness pole dancing classes, or what my terrible trio of the feline variety are up to, well, I'll understand, but you'll have to tell me.
So, quick recap for those of you who may be new. I've been doing genealogical research for 16 years. I've been an Archivist for the last 8 1/2 years or so. In January, I gave my first Archives presentation to a genealogical group for the Town & Country Public Library in Elburn, IL and started in the ProGen Study Group program. I attended the Midwest Geneabloggers Meet up in March, and I'm hoping to attend again in October. I met my 2nd and 3rd cousins who live in Cincinnati last December because of this blog, and stayed with one of them again while I was doing my own research and attending NGS 2012 in Cincinnati in May as an Official Blogger! I received a grant through OpenSNP to have my DNA tested at 23andme. I've taken one trip to Michigan for a personal archives client and will be going back over Labor Day weekend to finish the first part and (hopefully) begin on a second portion. As of today, with the exception of the huge interruption after finding letters written by Varina Howell Davis (much more on this later), I'm 95% finished processing my OWN material so I can begin the process of filling out applications to Ohio Genealogical Society Lineage groups (First Families, Settlers & Builders, Century Families, Society of Civil War Families) and The First Families of Hamilton County Ohio. I have one scheduled speaking engagement in November, and I'm hoping that I'll be able to do more speaking in the future. Whew!
I struggle to be able to define how far my genealogical research and research skills have come in the last year. I thought I had a clue what I was doing. Heh. As with applying common sense to how we handle older genealogical material, or ANY old material for that matter, having an understanding of how to do that and learning technical aspects of the correct way to do it are two completely different things. So, I'm learning. And it's fun but, I gotta be honest, it's challenging. Those darn source citations are gonna be the death of me. But I don't know how many times I've looked at my own old database (I started a new one last year that is technically correct) and wondered, 'where the HECK did I get this information from?!' I've moved the lines that are important to me back several generations, but not without the generous help of some of you. There have been lots of random acts of genealogical kindness, small and big, that have helped me. So, I try my best to do the same. What's more, I gained an incredible group of diverse people from all over the world and, I've come to care deeply for many of you.
If you would've asked me a year ago what I would've thought was going to happen in this year, NONE of this would've been on the list. It's incredible how genealogy has opened up another world for me. But, there is NO way that I could've done it without all of you. I've found an incredible amount of support in the genealogical community. As with any community, it hasn't been without it's bumps in the road, but those are behind me and will stay there. My focus is on the future, and helping the genealogical community to be better. *I* want to be better. A better Archivist, a better Genealogist, and a better Community Member.
You can find me on Social Media: Twitter = @ArchivalBiz ~ Facebook = laura.lorenzana ~ Google+ = Laura Cosgrove Lorenzana
Also, stay tuned for another *small* announcement about how I want to help all of you take better care of the material that you have, that might come into your possession, or that your client's might have. It's time we all took better care of what we've worked so hard for! Tell me how I can help you do that. Thank you for being here and I really hope to see you next year!!
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