What is Ancestral StoryTelling all about?
If you want to share your family history then this is the place for you. Whether you’ve been researching your tree or collecting stories from living relatives, you may have been wondering how to turn your family history into a meaningful narrative.This is where you can get ideas about how to bring your family story to life and find out how to create an engaging story to share with family members.
Ancestral StoryTelling began for me when I got my DNA analysed. I set up my family tree on Ancestry.com and sent off for the DNA kit. While I was waiting for the results I started researching and developing my tree and became hooked! I couldn’t leave it alone.
My Dad’s side of the tree grew rapidly just through using the Ancestry.com database. Even today, everytime I go on the site I am still finding something new. My Mum’s side of the tree is another story! She’s Welsh and my Welsh family are proving to be very elusive. I’m really struggling with building this side of my tree. Even so, as my family tree grew I really wanted to share it with my brother Paul.
I wanted Paul to see more in our tree than just our ancestors’ names. So I started writing about our family history and some of the things I’d found out. The more I wrote the more there was to write. I kept writing. All the same I became increasingly more impatient to share the tree with Paul, so I invited him to view it and sent him what I had written so far. I told him that I was still working on our family story and that he would be getting updated versions in the future.
If you’ve been writing about your family tree then you will have asked yourself the same questions I did: Where do I begin and how do I organise this? There are lots of decisions to make about how you write your family story, which is where I could see my ‘Notes on Our Family Tree’ expanding into the future!
From writing about my family tree I thought how valuable it would be to be part of a community of people, all researching and writing about their family history. I thought it would be great to have a place to share ideas and get feedback, to find inspiration and encouragement, and to learn creative writing techniques to help move the writing process forward.
There are other good sites that share expertise in genealogical research and how to write and publish your family story. What’s different here is the emphasis on storytelling and the important role it has to play in understanding ourselves, making connections and building community.
To start with I’m offering some resources that give you some simple steps to writing about your family tree and how to begin researching your family history. The aim is to build a community where like minded people can interact, discuss and share ideas, and share their writing.
In future I’ll be adding further resources. These will include webinars and courses that go into more depth on how to use your research to write about your ancestors. An essential part of this process is to create an online community. A community where you can share your writing, and get feedback on how you tell your family’s story. A community where you can have fun, be inspired and bring your family story to life!