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November 2011

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Company Histories Need Not Be Dull Reads

November 30, 2011

As a Social Studies teacher I think I'm pretty good at distinguishing interesting historical stories from dull textbooks. Students who dislike studying history typically are unhappy with the presentation of past events as a long list of dates, facts and dry information. That's why I like to break apart the word "history" and explain that the "h" and the "i" stand for human interest and then you add on story and you get history!

Corporate histories, unfortunately, are often dull and boring. If you are in the position of preserving company history do yourself a favor. Find the interesting stories behind the company's birth and development. Avoid churning out corporate history that sounds, well, corporate.

Writing Corporate History, an article by Amanda Lynch for Writers Digest, provides insight from freelance writer Jack El-Hai. He's done many corporate histories and while he acknowledges the challenges he also emphasizes the importance of the stories of the people behind the businesses. | more here |

Journal Software Real Bargain on Cyber Monday

November 28, 2011

The days following Thanksgiving have become known for shopping bargains. Naturally retailers want to cash in on the holiday shopping season. So there's Black Friday - the day after Thanksgiving when the stores have deep discounts. The past couple of years they've stretched to "crack of dawn" openings and many even opened at midnight on Thursday night this year.

The Journal SoftwareBut the monday after Thanksgiving has become an even bigger shopping day for online sales. There isn't much time left, but if you are a believer in keeping a journal (a great tool for life story writing and many other great reasons) then you should certainly take a look at what The Journal has to offer. It's really an incredible software tool that I use for many purposes. It's more than "diary software". There are various packages to meet needs from school to spiritual development to chronicling life changing events, creative writing and much more. And it's discounted 30% right now

Is Your Family History Worth Reading?

November 17, 2011

Many people like the idea of preserving some family history in a book. If you do will it be interesting and rewarding reading? It will if you follow some basic tips before the writing process.

Lead with an interesting story. You don't have to start with basic 
so and so" was born on this day and other important, but not riveting data. What was unique or special about the birthdate? For instance, in my family my dad was born on Christmas Day, my mom the day after Christmas and then the first child (my older sister) was born on Christmas Eve! That's a conversation starter. You toss in that I was supposed to be born on Christmas, too, but came a bit early on December 15 and you wonder how it is possible for this congruence of Christmas time birthdays in one family.

There are other great little tips and I've rarely seem them presented in one article as well as I have with the Write a Family History Worth Reading article by Sunny Morton online courtesy of LDSLiving Magazine.

Post 11-11-11

November 14, 2011

This past Friday the calendar gave us one of those quirky number alignments - 11/11/11. We've been getting such a treat once a year the past ten years. Next year we get to have December 12 fall on 12/12/12.

At any rate, I hope you remembered it was Veteran's Day and thanked any veterans you know for their service. If you haven't investigated the great opportunity to preserve the stories of our vets in the US, check out the Veterans History Project (here).

11/11/11 was also a special day for the One Day on Earth Project. People from around the world recorded something happening in their lives on that day, much like they did last year on 10/10/10. My Social Studies 6th grade class has been working on an original song that we recorded that day. It was fun. You will be amazed to discover all the One Day on Earth Project is about (including the soon to be released major motion picture documentary) by visiting their website.

Being Present to the Present

November 7, 2011

I just returned yesterday from a weekend getaway, a mens retreat that I've been to before many times. We gather in Tohatchi, New Mexico. This is about twenty miles north of Gallup on the Navajo Reservation. It is always a very spiritual time and great fellowship with guys I've known for years. We are sharing a similar "path" and life journey and taking the time away from my busy schedule was well worth it.

Sure, now I am back to the hustle and bustle of another week. But I have perspective again and I recognize the gift of being present to the present.

A Fine Example of Memoir Writing from Novelist Walter Mosley

November 3, 2011

Walter Mosley has written and published 30 novels, quite an amazing accomplishment for any writer. Now you get a poignant peek into his childhood with a recollection of his earliest memories growing up in Los Angeles by reading the personal history essay he wrote for the New York Times - here.

Everybody has a story to tell!
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