British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa
British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa

Guide - Writing Resources

 
Members of the writing group of the British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa (BIFHSGO) believe it’s important to turn genealogy research into stories that can be shared.

The writing group is open to BIFHSGO members who are already writing about their family history and would like to exchange feedback with other writers. (For information about the writing group, contact BIFHSGO, attention Carol Annett.)
 
But you don’t have to join a writing group to turn genealogy findings into engaging stories. This resource page was created for anyone looking for tips on starting a writing project. 
 
Resources
 
Handout
Books we recommend from the Ottawa Branch library of Ontario Ancestors (Ontario Genealogical Society) in The City of Ottawa Archives, 100 Tallwood Drive:
  • Carmack, Sharon DeBartolo. You Can Write your Family History. Cincinnati: Betterway Books, 2003. Dewey # 808.06 CAR
  • Shown Mills, Elizabeth. Evidence Explained: Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace, 2nd ed. Baltimore, MD. USA 2009. Dewey # 907.2 MIL
  • Strunk, William Jr., and E.B. White. The Elements of Style, 4th ed. Dewey # 808.042 STR
  • Zinsser, William. On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction 30th Anniversary edition, 7th ed. Dewey # 808.06 ZIN
Resources we recommend that are available on the BIFHSGO website:
  • “Anglo-Celtic Roots Guide to Authors.” British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa  Members Only section, under Anglo-Celtic Roots.
Stories from Anglo-Celtic Roots:
There are many family history stories published in BIFHSGO’s quarterly publication, Anglo-Celtic Roots, that can provide a source of inspiration for aspiring writers. You can browse past issues of ACR here, or link to the stories listed below that were award winners:
  • BIFHSGO Members Awards, Best Anglo-Celtic Roots Article since 2000
     
  • Award winners from BIFHSGO 20th Anniversary Writing Competition 2014:
Adrienne Stevenson. “Adventures of a Library.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 20 No 3 (Fall 2014): 16-25.

Carol Annett, “Picturing Knoydart Then and Now.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 20 No 3 (Fall 2014): 25-34.

Anne Renwick, ““A Precious Legacy.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol. 20 No. 4 (Winter 2014): 26-35.

Brenda Turner, “Archie’s Rifles.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 21 No 1 (Spring 2015): 19-24.

Dena Palamedes, “The Rambler—Exodus from Savary.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 21 No 2 (Summer 2015):19-26.
 
Lynne Willoughby, “The McGirrs of Castlederg.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol. 21 No. 2 (Summer 2015): 27-37.
  • Award winners from BIFHSGO 25th Anniversary Writing Competition 2019:
Claire Callender, “The Travels and Trials of Adam Logan, Dairyman.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 25 No 4 (Winter 2019): 3-15. Members Only section

Irene Kellow Ip, “A Tale of Two Names.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 25 No 4 (Winter 2019): 16-26. Members Only section

Lynda Gibson, “John and Grizzel’s Epic Adventure to the Land of Milk and Maple Syrup.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 26 No 1 (Spring 2020): 3-12. Members Only section

Dianne Brydon, “Who’s Crazy? The Sad Tale of Mary Brydon and Mental Health in 19th Century Ontario.” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 26 No 1 (Spring 2020): 12-21. Members Only section

Bette Smith, “Emily Charts a New Course,” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 26 No 2 (Summer 2020): 3-13. Members Only section

Carol Dillon, “My Father’s Trunk: The Beginning of a Genealogical Journey,” Anglo-Celtic Roots Vol 26 No 2 (Summer 2020): 13-23. Members Only section
 
Links to other resources:
 
Nigro, Carmen. “20 Reasons Why You Should Write Your Family History.”  New York Public Library (Accessed on 18 May 2020).