It’s amazing the variety of busy work I can distract myself with when I have a big project to do. All sorts of minor activities, from writing a letter to finishing my library book, get my attention. What I should be doing is working on my great-great grandfather’s life story.
I suspect that “writing a book” just sounds overwhelming. What I need to do is break it down into chunks that aren’t so daunting. Airing my concerns to my writing group helped me sort out my thinking a bit.
Here’s how I’m currently picturing the book layout:
- Abraham’s early life/growing up in southern Indiana 1837-1860
- Nancy’s life while Abraham is gone to war
- Abraham’s prisoner of war experience – Andersonville
- The 100 men of Company G
- After the war – Missouri and Kansas 1865 to 1900
- Abraham and Nancy’s children and grandchildren
- Growing old – 1900 to 1930
There’s a ton of research still to be done. I’ve visited southern Indiana and Andersonville in Georgia. I’ve read dozens of diaries of Andersonville prisoners. Connecting with descendants of Abraham and Nancy has turned up further anecdotes and vintage photos. I know there is so much more out there waiting to be found.
I need to give myself some structure, maybe a daily checklist.
- one hour genealogy research
- one hour reading (Civil War history, pioneer history, etc.)
- one hour internet research background information
Worth a try. I’m off to do some work.