Monday, May 18, 2015

Class Highlight: Writing a Quality Family Narrative with John Philip Colletta

It’s inevitable: At some point in your family history research, it will hit you—this is an amazing story! If publishing your family’s story is something you’ve thought about, whether you’ve spent years researching generations of your family or are just getting started, this is the class for you. John Philip Colletta has been engaging SLIG participants for years with his vivid case studies and examples of transforming genealogy data into engaging, printed stories.

This course will help you learn how to compile your material, write your biography, choose an organizational numbering system, and document, edit, and proofread the saga of your family—on paper or electronically.

Classes explore how to enliven your prose with family lore, treasure heirlooms, local history, maps, and illustrations. One in-class writing exercise with follow-up critique will help you improve practical skills, share your talents, and exchange ideas with the instructors and fellow students.

2014 class participant Michelle Ercanbrack said, “As a fan of Dr. Colletta’s fascinating book Only a Few Bones, I was excited to take his class. His writing techniques and prompts are so clever! His thoughtful feedback of each student’s writing assignment, combined with hearing everyone’s stories and the ensuing discussion, was my favorite part of the class. I left motivated to keep writing because I had so many new ideas!”

Have questions about Writing a Quality Family Narrative, and if it’s the right class for you? Email us at 

For more about John Philip Colletta, visit his site at

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