Oh Look, A Proper Entry … With Words

Enough of that cheating stuff. A blog is for writing, and write I shall. But they’re also for ranting, aren’t they? Right then, rant I shall!

Actually, it’s less of a rant and more of a psych myself up effort. Normally I’d love, love, love the project I’m about to undertake. But a fair amount of time needs to be spent on such things, and I don’t have time to do this justice. Not even close. It would take at least a month to do the required research, checking of facts, brain picking to pull the pertinent details out of the memory in the correct order, and so on. However, I have very limited time in which to do this now, so it’s all a bit frantic.

Basically, I have a three chapter history of my family to write, spanning 130 years, give or take. The deadline for all of the chapters was actually this past Friday, but they‘ll accept late submissions, since I wasn’t aware of the fact that I would be doing any of this. But not too late, of course, hence the rush. I would have happily taken it on when the project was announced, and happily spent the past few months compiling all of the info needed and constructing it into three separate, well written chapters. But now it’s a total rush job and, while I can do it, it’s not going to be up to standard and that upsets me immensely. I’m not a procrastinator, at least not when it comes to things like this, and it irritates the crap out of me that I’m stuck in this position now. This is going to be published in hard cover book form, and will be also be a permanent part of my home town’s archives. So, it needs to be done exactly right. I also have an extremely nitpicky extended family who will tear it apart mercilessly, and I’ll never hear the end of it if I get one little detail wrong!

Of course it’s thanks to them that I’m under the gun with parts two and three of the project, which is the story of my great-grandparents and their children, then my grandparents and their children. They decided that I should do it … but forgot to tell me that I had been nominated. I volunteered for part one of the project in the beginning, dealing with my immediate family, as in parents and siblings. But I was rather snottily informed that some of the others would put their heads together and do it. Fine! Surprisingly my mother was on my side, which is a very rare thing, but the others can bully her really easily and she backed down. So, I did nothing, but neither did anyone else, as I found out yesterday, to my horror.

Oh, I suppose that I should explain what all of this writing is for, shouldn’t I?! My home town is going to celebrate its 125th anniversary next year. For the 75th and 100th anniversaries, books were published, detailing the history of the town itself, as well as each of the rural districts in the municipality around the town. But this time, they want to focus on individual families, past and present. Easy enough for the newcomers, but my family were pioneers to the area and I have one hundred and thirty years, give or take, of family history to compile and write up. The usual names, dates, and such are required, of course, but they also want anecdotes and details about the family’s involvement in both the town and surrounding communities. My great-grandparents, grandparents, and my dad’s generation lived to serve their community. If it wasn’t already in place, they were instrumental in putting it in place. So, I have a bit of a task ahead. Just compiling the family tree is a job in itself, especially as I can’t find my book in which I had written it all down. My great-grandparents had eleven children, all but one of whom married and went on to have large families themselves. As did the next generation, and on it goes. I’m not saying that I come from the most important family in town, but they contributed an awful lot, and it would be a serious injustice to have them omitted from the book.

My dad had written lengthy submissions for the other history books, since he was always regarded as the family/area writer and historian. It seems that Dad’s torch is firmly in my hands now, and always will be. It’s extremely flattering to be seen as his successor by family and community, but he left mighty big shoes to fill. He set the bar incredibly high with his contributions to the previous books, as he did with anything he undertook. So I sincerely hope that his spirit will perch on my shoulder and be my muse for as long as this takes. I’m going to need all of the help and inspiration that I can get!

Alright, enough of the psyching up for it, and on with the task at hand. This got the writing juices flowing somewhat, so let’s hope that they continue to flow. I obviously won’t have time for much in the way of blogging for the next little while, but this post is long enough to keep you going, I’m sure!

Wish me luck. Please?!

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2 thoughts on “Oh Look, A Proper Entry … With Words

  1. Eleanor, yes… a blog is for writing, and ranting too. Well.. three chapters and post-due? I guess that'd be bit of cause for stress. I do hope the posting of this has helped build you up to get you going on the writing.Sounds like a major task. Congrats on receiving 'the torch'… mighty big boots to fill. I don't envy you, but I do have faith in your ability to do it seeing how well you do take on writing, Eleanor.

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