Saturday, January 1, 2011

Carnival of Genealogy's101st: My Genealogy Research & Writing Plan for 2011

My Genealogy research/writing plan for 2011 requires that I first look at 2010 to see what went well, what went not so well, and where I need to focus my time and energy in 2011.

Was part of a family group that planned, researched and set up an exhibit at the Klamath County Museum honoring my aunt, Gail G. Sigford, and four other World War II WASP (Women Air Service Pilots) from Klamath County. The exhibit was professional and received some excellent comments from viewers.

Wrote several articles about my aunt, including an article on the exhibit in the Klamath Falls Herald & News.

Participated in an 8-week writing workshop, and have been submitting articles for publication regularly as a result of the workshop. So far only rejection slips in my mailbox, but received one hand-written rejection telling me how much they enjoyed reading the essay, but “sorry not for us.”

Went to Wisconsin on a major genealogy research trip. Met several members of different branches of the McPherson clan, as well as photographing a diary that dated back to 1850 and a whole slew of pictures.

Entered almost all of my Uncle Ralph's letters onto this dedicated  blog. Now making contact with folks to help me with putting the finishing touches on the project, before setting up for publication.

Consistently attended my writing critique group.

Blogging on Roots'n'Leaves was a hit or miss proposition. Still have not finished my series on Klamath Falls Museum exhibit.

Missed my Geneablogger friends.

Research was rather limited, mainly to the WASP project, and of course, the great trip to Wisconsin, but my overall McPherson family research faltered, and other lines came to a dead standstill.

Felt frustrated and out-of-sorts as my dedicated writing time dwindled as I became more immersed in side projects.


Establish a consistent but do-able writing schedule to just write. (I'm thinking at least two hours, Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings. Fridays are sometimes problematical, but need to make up any hours I miss on Friday – or during the week. Remind myself that six hours a week, is better than zero hours. Also recognize that when I am on a roll, I give up TV, cooking, cleaning, yard work, and most everything else – but that I need that six hours for the impetus.

Set aside at least four to six hours a month for just research and/or article submission.

Post at least twice a week on Roots'n'Leaves. (Much easier now that the Uncle Ralph letters are finished and a consistent writing schedule will also help.)
Ask for help to do the finish work on the book of Uncle Ralph's letters.

Participate in genealogy/writing workshops, attend a conference conferences, or take a mini research and writing trip – at least three times during 2011.

Enjoy writing, researching, and blogging with my friends.

Keep the outside “Oh, that might be fun”-projects (which tend to take over my life) to a minimum. Uh-Oh,  that's my Achilles heel.

Hours devoted to writing and genealogy amount to 40-50 hours per month. Ancillary projects and commitments snaring 5 to 20+ hours a month, plus a little part time gig, and this retired little old lady is feeling pressed for time.

It's a Plan, but am ready to re-evaluate and fine-tune what isn't working.

Commit to a weekly follow-up on Roots'n'Leaves.

Stay tuned, my friends,  and feel welcome to kibitz and comment, now and throughout the year.


  1. Happy New Year Joan! May 2011 bring you many acceptance letters!

  2. Great Plan!! Genealogy Travel lag, family illness, and other life issues must be calculated into our goals. Do not be hard on yourself. You accomplished a lot last year. I admire the fact you are taking writing classes. That is a very smart idea. Congratulations on a great 2010 and I look forward to reading your blog in 2011.

  3. From someone who knows what it's like to get pulled down those side paths - I wish you luck! I've missed your regular posts, but I see that you have also gotten a lot of work done this year.

  4. Joan,

    Your plan is going to keep you busy. But hey, what does a little dust matter, and the dishes in the sink... :::passes you the magic wand to make those go away ::: :)

    J at Cow Hampshire

  5. Ahhh, so thats what you have been up too. We have to do what makes us happy. Or what we need to do to get to that. I am glad for you. Success too for this 2011. It is too bad we have to sleep. If we were only solar.

  6. I like your plan Joan...good luck! I plan on fine-tuning mine as I go, but sure hope I can accomplish most of it.