A Personal Historian and Life Writing are what? Isn’t that expensive?

A Personal historian is someone who sits with you, listens to you and creates a lasting legacy in the form of a book or video of your life reflections. Life Writing is non-fictional writing that records a person’s memories to tell the story of their life or parts of their life experiences. The cost relates to what you want done. It is like a holiday where you may choose to have a wonderful camping holiday with its special intimate moments or a grand luxury stay at an international hotel. Anyway, how do you value the priceless gift of a completely personalised book on your life that will be treasured for generations?

Life Writing is one of the most dynamic fields of modern writing and is generating a lot of interest amongst people of all ages. The genre is available to all people and can the final product can be as small as you like or as big as you can afford. Usually, although not exclusively, they are private books or videos that will be handed down through generations as perhaps war medals. They also serve to share precious photographs and treasured documents amongst  family members.

Personal Historian
A Life Historian will help preserve those stories she will want to know

Life Writing

There are many methods of writing about one’s life from personal essays, autobiographies, journal writing, letters, memoirs and blogging just to name a few. A biography will focus on milestones in a whole life whilst memoir stories hold smaller moments or snapshots of a life and include insights and reflections. Life Writing can encompass all of this and embraces the lives of individuals, families, groups and even the development of business and institutions.

A Personal historian completing your life story will draw from many categories but will be distinctive in that they take real events and people and create a narrative in your voice that reflects your life experiences and writes in the first person (I), so representing you, the narrator as the author.

Personal History Writing values your life

Personal history writing in its very essence acknowledges that each life has value, beliefs and knowledge for present and future generations to relate to or learn from. The question a narrator must continually ask themselves is ‘Is this story true’.

Truth is central to life writing and every narrator must answer to their conscience and write in good faith as their memory tells it. The vagaries of memory are a given and certainly humans do have blind spots in some instances, as in perhaps the child who loved his pet dog and the mother who describes it as ugly and a nuisance.

Life writing gives an opportunity to reflect and remember perhaps insignificant details that gain clarity and richness as time unfolds. It also serves to celebrate life from its most innocent perspective – reflection. Small joys and triumphs can seem so much more when the context is understood and explained. Misunderstandings and poor decision making equally can be reframed through insight and perspective previously untold or unrealized.

A Personal Historian will help with generational wisdom nuggets

The gift of life reflection stories celebrating our uniquely human experience through our senses, perceptions and observations become the wisdom nuggets our families will hold closest to their hearts.  It will provide a generational touchstone for descendants and a tangible connection that will be appreciated and celebrated.

However, Life Writing does not come without its complications. Some might seize the opportunity to divulge a secret that has plagued them for decades, or to be hurtful or offensive to someone, maybe even misrepresent them and so take final revenge.

If values and morals are central to Life Writing, so must ethical principles and an individual’s privacy. Seeking revenge or intending harm is not part of the Life Writing ethos. If the questions of ‘Is anyone hurt or offended by my story?’ or ‘Do I respect other people’s privacy through appropriate representation and handling of sensitive or other issues’ cause a flicker in one’s mind, then the question is answered.

Stories are a traditional method of communication throughout the ages

Stories are how we transmit wisdom, inspiration and life lessons. Stories have been used over the centuries by many different cultures as a generational means of communication. In today’s world, we have the means of creating lasting keepsakes through technology and self-publishing.

Any age is the right age to tell a life story. Often the perception is that it belongs to those in the autumn of their lives or even perhaps to relatives hoping to catch some wisdom from an aging loved one before it is too late. The truth is young people can write life stories in celebration perhaps of a journey or a relationship, professionals can write life stories of how their personal journey was accomplished and unfolded, parents can write the life story of their developing family from any perspective, perhaps at five or ten year intervals, or in each house they lived in or how things were when they had certain pets. There is no limit to the creativity of the narrator.

A Personal Historian is available and here to help

Life writing is something you can do yourself, but if not, a Life Historian is there to help you. If you really want to preserve your family knowledge, it is affordable and good value.

Life Writing is empowering and powerful. Taking down the scaffolding of your life can be a health benefit and provide incredible satisfaction to you and your family.

Contact Write My Journey for more information

E: info@thewritingshed.com.au

M: 0407 487 495

www.thewritingshed.com.au  for all your editing needs

Personal Historian
Association of Personal Historians