Monday, May 2, 2011

Article #148 Making An Outline

If you haven’t started writing your life story, shame on you. Get to work. Perhaps it will help to make an outline or list of experiences you’d like to recall for your family to know more about your life. In writing my life story there were many areas of my life I wanted to share with my descendents such as: my childhood memories with parents and grandparents, religious experiences, travels, courtship and marriage, divorces, raising children, hobbies that I grew to love, etc. You may think your life was very boring but just because you lived decades ago, but your grandkids will be fascinated as you tell them the details of life without computers, TV or even electricity. Well, maybe you aren’t that old, but society has changed a lot since we were young. (Photo of me by my grandmother's hollyhocks.)

So from your life or outline, if you’re writing chronologically, pick an area you want to write about. Perhaps jot down some questions or facts you’d like to share. There’s many interesting websites about historical events that can jog your memory when you’re writing about the good old days when…the Kennedy’s were in power or the space program started. I remember the first spudnik that blasted off and doing bomb (atomic) drills at school in the 1950s.

As you progress and remember details from your life, you’ll be amazed at all you’ve gone through. Be sure and describe the trials and struggles of daily living, what you’ve gained from the challenging times. Any advice to give your young-uns about their lives can easily be slipped in here and there. Don’t forget the humorous times and the awkward feelings you had as a teenager. Didn’t we all dread school at times and those bullies who came into our lives. Make your story full of details and describe your feelings of how it was to live then, etc.

Writing your life story will become therapeutic for you as you relive those days of long ago, as you realize that you survived and actually learned from both the good and bad times. Looking back, reflect on what life has taught you. How you would do it differently if you knew what you knew now? Describe your relationship with your parents, grand parents, teachers, friends and community. Did you grow up in a small town or city, etc.? There is much to write about with YOU as the star of this non-fiction story.


  1. I'm still writing about my adolecent years but the joy in reminscing about the past has been facinating. It is a memorial book full of Nana's life and experiences...a great story to hand down to my baby girls and their families someday.

  2. OK OK.... I will.... after I finish Art's genealogy project.

  3. You make a good outline is necessary