I woke up this morning feeling non too confident that I could start writing for the Family History Writing Challenge today. Heck, I haven't even been able to conclusively determine whether Joseph Benton Nowell was born in 1842 or 1843, in Alabama or Mississippi.
But then I received the FHWC newsletter from the Armchair Genealogist. Lynn's advice for the unprepared really helped. Instead of putting off the writing to chase down more documentation, I'm going to do both.
First I will start with writing summaries about events in his life, even if I do have to include the "I don't know if it's this or that," statements. And I'm only setting a 300 word count quota to start with so that I will also have time to research for the next day's topic. I may bump it up later when I have more information.
I'm not going to worry too much about the order of events. In fact, I'm probably going to save each event summary separately so that I can go back and put them in order for a single outline. Then I can start the actual first draft.
As far as style of writing goes, I'm not sure what you'd define it as, but I'm mainly writing it for interested members of my family. So I will give all of the documented facts, including the contradictory ones, but also try to throw in some of that good old Nowell family humor that Grandma Zula passed down to us.
And, of course, it's just a rough draft that will grow and flesh out over time with more research. Which is why I won't be publishing it on my blog. =D I will post updates on my progress, achievements, and frustrations though.
If anyone reading this is blogging about their own experiences with the Family History Writing Challenge, or is actually posting their family history writings, please feel free to share your blog link in the comments so I can check it out.
Time for me to put on a fresh pot of coffee and start Day One.