Chris Lightfoot is the founder of ‘Beginners Guide to Writing‘, a website aimed at new and inexperienced writers who would like to start writing their family history. Chris lives on the south coast on the Hampshire/Dorset border (UK) where she also runs regular workshops on how to start writing a family history.
What brings you to THE Genealogy Show?
I am exhibiting at the THE Genealogy Show to meet and encourage visitors to start using their research to create a legacy which is both accessible and interesting. Genealogy research is of little use or interest if is just filed away on a computer or in boxes in the attic! On the other hand, a book or a series of stories is something family, friends or a wider audience can really engage with both now and in the future.
What advice would you give to genealogists (and those researching their family history) who have dissuaded themselves from writing their research?
I have met many genealogists at the shows I have exhibited at,and at my workshops and it saddens me how few of them have even considered what they are going to do with their research.
Two of the most common reasons for not starting to write up their research is “I am not a writer” and “I haven’t got any interesting stories to tell”. Writing, just like research, comes with practice and, when pressed, most people can come up with an anecdote or two that would be perfect for turning into a story. It is these stories that can be used as the building blocks for a longer narrative or book. I have heard a number of great stories but the one I remember best is the story of somebody’s ancestor being eaten by a whale. Somewhat disturbing but good story material!
If people want to find out more about you, where can they do so?
I am not a genealogist but I am a writer and editor who is passionate about ensuring that years of research is not lost. My website offers a range of information products and courses and I write regular blog posts. I also offer a variety of writing and editing services to help people get started writing. It is never too late (or too soon) to start writing your family history stories. I look forward to meeting you at the show and hearing about some of the stories you have uncovered! In the meantime, why not visit my website at .