Telling your story

A free consultation at your home helps you decide how you would like to tell your story–whether it will be a full-length life history in a hard-bound book, a photo book with captions, or anything in between.

Once we decide how you want to proceed, I ask you to fill out a questionnaire, which serves a dual purpose. The questionnaire helps to get the memory juices flowing before we actually sit down to do the interviews. The information provides context, as well as the spelling of names and dates that I can plug in later when I am doing the transcribing, writing and editing.

Contemplation
Artist: Stanley Goudey.

I conduct the interviews about a week apart, to give you time to assimilate what we have already done. After a few hours of interviews I provide you with a 2,000 word sample to give you a feel for the writing and the end project.

I interview each client where they are most comfortable, usually in their home, away from noise and distraction. I use a recorder and take notes while conducting the interview. If a client requires a caregiver, I will only conduct interviews with a caregiver present, at least in an adjacent room.

After I transcribe the notes I have recorded, I get started on the organization of the material, keeping it the storyteller’s voice as I write. Once I have completed the draft, I ask you to read it over to make sure there are  no changes or suggestions. You will have the opportunity to review the manuscript at least three times before the manuscript is completed.

Sometimes, photos tell the story as well as a type-written narrative. As the project progresses, you choose the photos you want to include in the final book. You may want to include copies of birth certificates, marriage licenses, or genealogies.

The finished project is dependent upon your budget and your end goal. Each project is unique. It can be a narrative printed on 8-1/2 x 11 paper in a softbound notebook, or a hardbound book with photos and a dust jacket.

The cost of the project depends on how many interview hours are required. For each interview hour,  you can plan on an additional 20 hours or more of my time to prepare the final project. Depending on the project, my hours include transcription of recorded interviews, writing, editing, and organizing the manuscript in logical sequence and chapters. Secting photos, designing captions, and laying out the project are required for photo projects.

A life history is a lasting legacy to connect you to future generations.

  • For more information please contact me.