Friday, January 21, 2011

AZ Family History Expo - Part 1 - M. Bridget Cook

Today at the Arizona Family History Expo, I had the opportunity and honor of attending national bestselling author, M. Bridget Cook’s keynote banquet presentation, “Handling and Healing the Skeletons In Your Genealogical Closet” and her class, “Juicy Family History: 25 Ways to Write Compelling True Stories.” Bridget is an incredibly talented and passionate speaker. I left today with some new tools and the determination to move my own writing in a direction that will help me to tell not only my stories but those of my family in a way that truly draws the reader into the experience.

Two things I took away from Bridget’s talks today:

  1. Don’t just write a story in such a way that you only bring out the subject’s accolades thereby putting the person (or yourself on a pedestal). Include stories describing how you (or your subject) were faced with a challenge (good or bad) and what you did to overcome it. It will give your reader a better perspective and maybe even change their life.
  2. The other thing I l found extremely intriguing is that sometimes, when telling your story, in order to avoid presenting yourself as “holier than thou”, you can have someone you know tell a story about you or a portion of a story. It gives a completely different perspective.
As a thank you for attending this evening’s dinner, each of the attendees received an autographed copy of Bridget’s book, Shattered Silence, The Untold Story of a Serial Killer’s Daughter. I can’t wait to get started reading it, so I’m off to do just that.

First a picture from our table this evening.

My friend Lynn, myself, blogger Amy Urman, and blogger and speaker Colleen McHugh.
Also joining us at our table tonight were Katherine from Tempe who is returning to genealogy after a 30 year break, and Diane from Ellensburg, Washington.

© 2011, copyright Michelle Goodrum

Disclaimer: As a Blogger of Honor, I did receive free FHE registration and a ticket to tonight's banquet. All observations and opinions expressed are purely my own.

1 comment:

  1. Great photo! We're so glad you enjoyed having Bridget as a speaker. We think she's pretty great, too!