Ten Tools for Genealogical Writing

Harold Henderson, CG
Aug 20, 2019
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Learn about BCG
5m 49s
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Speaker's Introduction
1m 12s
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3m 50s
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7m 45s
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Follow the Best
2m 17s
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2m 58s
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Write First
2m 07s
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Where to Start
1m 30s
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Help the Reader
16m 56s
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Find Critics
2m 04s
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9 Kinds of Editing
7m 24s
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1m 09s
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4m 16s
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Questions / answers
21m 38s

About this webinar

Genealogists love to research, but writing it up – not so much. First, we need to read good writing (any kind). Then, practice writing in two separate compartments: write as it comes, and return later to fix or edit. Don’t worry about beginnings or endings; they will emerge over time. Seek out helpful critics, never wait until the last minute, and be ready to learn from editors.

About the speaker

About the speaker

Harold Henderson has been a professional writer since 1979, a professional genealogist since 2009, and a board-certified genealogist since 2012. His research focuses on the Midwest and its feeder states. He has served on the board of the Associati
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  1. Legacy Family Tree
    5 years ago

    learnt heaps, presentation excellent.

    A helpful webinar.

    A lot of interesting points to consider.

    Appears that when writing the “KISS” syndrome is the best. Keep it simple.

    As a speaker, the presenter was very efficient – the organization was superb.

    As always, knowledgable speaker with a timely topic. Thanks.

    Enjoyed his points and has given me the final push I needed to get started writing.



    Excellent content

    excellent items to help me write

    Excellent presenter. Excellent presentation. Thank you very much.

    Excellent suggestions

    Excellent tips on writing for genealogy.

    Excellent topic and speaker. Good handout.


    Excellent… I had to leave in the middle of it but I hope to watch the rest from the recording. Thank you!

    Gave me information to get started.

    Good advice about the writing processing in genealogy.

    Good food for thought in writing

    good information

    Good presentation…

    Good speaker with helpful ideas.

    good topic

    Great advice-I can see I have a lot of room for improvement.

    Great guidelines to help achieve something worthwile. Like the thought of keeping writing and editing processes seperate.

    Great helpful tips!

    Great information

    Great information for applying writing skills to genealogy.

    Great practical tips – loved them.

    Great webinar, but I don’t think I’m quite up to this level yet.

    Harold answered many questions that will help me in my writing about my Dad. Many thanks!

    Harold Henderson’s presentation was excellent. He had a clear structure. He illustrated his points with appropriate illustrations. His sense of humor usefully lightened the tone of what could easily have been a throwback to college composition class. I look forward to following his hints from today’s talk and hope to hear more of his presentations.

    Harold is superb. Not my first exposure to him. He was part of the draw to watch this.

    Harold said if we don’t write our work will end up in the trash. Sadly, that’s probably true. So writing becomes important and the information was helpful and useful.

    Harold shared a lot of good ideas regardless of the type of writing we may be attempting.

    Harold’s presentation was excellent and just what I needed to hear to get motivated to write. Many useful tips. he definitely practiced what he preaches in making a fine, accessible webinar.

    His outline was good and the overall presentation was helpful to me. I have never heard anyone give a talk on this topic before, so was most interested. At 87, I’m writing my own personal history for my grandchildren and found most of the examples he gave, I could apply.

    I am new to the concept of writing anything. I want to learn how and this webinar did open my eyes to the many things I have to think about.

  2. Legacy Family Tree
    5 years ago

    I am not a trained writer, but I found that I already practice many of the things he said to do. This was an affirmation that I am on the right track.

    I am on the verge of writing so this was much needed and appreciated.

    I appreciate the insight he has offered about his writing. I understand more about the art of writing, the responsibilities of an author and what to expect from the editing process. Thank you!!!

    I enjoyed Mr. Henderson’s crisp and sometimes amusing descriptions and have enjoyed the same in his writing. Never dry and dusty. His use of language is a lesson in itself.

    I found it easy to listen to and learn from, writing can be hard and this gave great examples of how to make it better.

    I got some helpful tips about genealogical writing.

    I have learned how much I don’t know about genealogy writing.

    I have saved the syllabus to reference. Very informative. I enjoyed it

    I have taken other classes on writing both fiction and non-fiction but this has added some info to those. Thank you.

    I learned a lot about writing!

    I like the no-nonsense information that was presented. It confirmed that I was on the right track in my work.

    I liked this syllabus. Good tips (making me realize some things I need to change in my writing).

    I loved the humour, both spoken and visual. The photos used during the presentation put a smile on my face. Hope we have the pleasure of hearing this presenter again.

    I loved this webinar! Not only was it informative, it was entertaining! Mr. Henderson certainly has a way with words!

    I really learned a lot, stimulated my thinking.

    I was very lucky to have attended GRIP this year and was a student in Harold’s and Kimberly Powell’s last Confusion to Conclusion seminar. I enjoyed hearing Harold’s lecture tonight and will look for more of his writings.

    I’ll listen to it again as my notes are not very complete, but the information will be very helpful as I write up my 40 years of research. Thank you.

    I’m not sure if I will ever write any of my genealogy findings but wanted an idea of how to.

    Informative with specific actions

    Informative. Thank you.

    It was a well organized with a handy syllabus. Good suggestions that I will use

    I feel it will be more interesting to read if it is not so long and I can add lots of pictures and thoughts to it.

    Much information, tricks, tips, stories, pacing was good, encouragement.

    Now to put it all into practice. My mind knows it’s the best thing to do but I still need to sit down and get started.

  3. Legacy Family Tree
    5 years ago

    Organized, lively, thorough, motivating

    Practical tips. Thank you!

    Really good questions tonight to compliment a very interesting presentation. Thank you

    really good suggestions

    Some of the first portion was very much over my head, but the meat of it regarding the writing was most interesting. I made copious notes and will use what I learned. Thank you.

    Sound advice articulated very well. Thank you for offering this webinar.

    Straight to the point. Great suggestions

    Thank you for all the good tips!

    Thanks — all good advice.

    Thanks Harold!

    Thanks Harold. I think I can start writing now.

    Thanks to Harold – an effective an helpful presentation.. I’m On the Clock

    Thanks you, I am putting together a presentation for my local Gen. Society and this helped me organize my thought processing.

    The information was just what I needed.

    The lecture was clear and easy to understand, Great tips for writing! Thank you.

    The lecture was succinct and the points will be easy to remember.

    The material was interesting and well presented. It was a good overview of a subject that needs more discussion and instruction. Would like to have this webinar in a format specifically geared to the amateur/family genealogists with more detail.

    The speaker was easy for me to understand. His discussion answered several questions about some of my projects, and I learned about the certification process. While I don’t intend to seek certification at this time, knowing the standards and rubrics will help me in formatting the records, reports and narratives of my personal research.

    The subject and speaker was interesting. I enjoyed it.

    The title was a little misleading as he didn’t really talk about tools, but the information was good. What he said was much more eloquent than his slides, so I’ll need to go back and really catch his examples and analogies again. I do enjoy the BCG webinars because they remind me that it’s important to maintain a higher standard of both the research and the writing portions of our family history. I definitely have to go back to the drawing board there as I have made most of the mistakes he mentioned. [sigh]

    This was a fresh take on writing for genealogical purposes.

    This was very well done. It was enjoyable and informative. Thank you, Harold!

    Thorough but easy to understand

    to the point and helpful!

    Topics seemed a bit “run together”. Over all, however, very interesting and worth the time.

    Very good

    Very good points made. Harold brought some points back to remembrance and also gave me some new thoughts to work on.

    Very helpful advice for those of us new to writing genealogical reports.

    Very informative

    Very informative, the handout will be extremely useful.

    Very informative.

    Very informative. Would like to have him back.

    Very instructive. Thanks so much!

    Very knowledgeable presenter.

    very technical

    Very well done

    Well done and should help me with my writing!

    Well presented, clear and logical.

    Well -presented.


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