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My name is Colleen and I find dead people.

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08 August, 2008

The Summer 2008 Genea-Blogger Grouop Games

In honor of the Olympic Games in Beijing, the Genea-bloggers group at Facebook is hosting the Genea-Bloggers Summer Group Games. Below are the categories that I will be participating in, taken from the Genea-Bloggers Summer Group Games page on Facebook.

1. Go Back and Cite Your Sources!

We all know how important our research is - but it is only worth the evidence that supports it! Have you ever looked at an entry in your database and wondered, "Where did that come from?" or "How can that be?" All events can and should be backed up by linking them to sources and evidence using a consistent and clear citation format.Create proper citations of sources for as many events possible using either Evidence Explained: Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace by Elizabeth Shown Mills or How to Cite Sources by John Wiley
(http://www.genealogy.com/19_wylie_print.html.

I'm horrible at citing; or at least I was when I started. So I have a lot to "re-do" here!

3. Organize Your Research!

So you have plenty of research - that's okay if you can find what you need when you need it, right? Take time to review your collection of documents and photos, both hard copy and digital, and work to organize those items for easy access.

A. Organize at least 20 hard files or ancestral items (books, fabrics, inherited items) into file folders, boxes, envelopes, containers, etc.; archival-quality where appropriate

B. Organize at least 20 digital files into folders, label, add metadata, add descriptions, add tags, etc.

C. Organize at least 20 photos into photo albums, scrapbooks, collages, protective holders, boxes, etc.

D. Organize at least 20 digital photos into folders, label, add metadata, add descriptions, add tags, etc.

E. Create at least 20 data entries in your database, or scan 20 photos, or scan 20 documents

F. Create a master list of your files and notify your family members of where it is stored

I just hope to revisit my organization. I really need to "fire" and "water" proof as much as I can.

4. Write, Write, Write!

Do you find birth dates, death dates and all the data boring if there's no narrative behind it? Don't you find the stories about ancestors more attractive than cut and dried census data? It takes time to be able to write about your family history and the more you write and the more often you write, the easier it is to bring your family to life for others to see.

A. Write a summary of what your blog is about and post it on your blog – you may not have done this since you started the blog and it is a great way to have new readers learn more about your site.

B. Participate in a genealogy or family history related blog carnival. See the AnceStories post "August Is..."
(http://ancestories1.blogspot.com/2008/08/august-is.html) for a list of these carnivals and their submission URLs and deadlines.

C. Prepare several posts in draft mode (if possible with your blog platform) and pre-publish.

D. Write a brief biographical sketch on one of your ancestors.

E. Sign up to host a future carnival.

Letter "D" will be challenging!

5. Reach Out & Perform Genealogical Acts of Kindness!

A. Comment on a new (to you) genea-blog.

B. Join another genea-blogger’s blog network on Facebook Blog Networks
(http://apps.new.facebook.com/blognetworks/).

C. Invite other genealogists to join Facebook.

D. Assist another researcher with a research request or lookup. See AnceStories "Random Acts of Kindness Week" posts for ideas for this item and Item E
(http://ancestories1.blogspot.com/2008/02/random-acts-of-kindness-week.html).

E. Participate in an indexing project.

F. Join a genealogical, historical, heritage or lineage society.

You'll notice that the numbers are out of order; this is because there is one other category that I won't be participating in: Back Up Your Data. I decided to forego this category while I work on the others.

I know that these games will be fun, but I also hope that these Genea-Blogger activities will break old habits and create new, more sound research methods.

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