Sunday, January 17, 2016

Looking back on 2015 writing and prospects for 2016

Last year, with the help of kind editors and colleagues, I published a dozen genealogy articles (four in peer-reviewed journals) and six book reviews. The full list is at Midwest Roots.

I experimented with "double-decker" publishing, following a problem-solving article about an eastern Indiana Smith family in NGS Quarterly with the full genealogical summary of the family in later issues of Indiana Genealogist. (BTW, one needs a long running start to do this. I have been puzzling over this family for six years!) And I experimented with a "review essay" which appeared in the December NGSQ.

And I've had fun with a series of short methodology articles on indirect evidence, negative evidence, and historical context in the Association of Professional Genealogists Quarterly.

Early 2015 saw the long-awaited publication of La Porte County, Indiana, Early Probate Records, 1833-1850 with Genealogical Publishing Co., a joint production with Dorothy Germain Palmer and Mary Leahy Wenzel -- one of the few such books containing a nearly-every-name index of the probate materials, so that early La Porte researchers can track non-decedents in these records. Proceeds go to our genealogical society, of which Dorothy is president.

I also changed professional focus from client research to client editing. The plan is to spend more time on writing (and more on specific problems and families), and less time on committee work, speaking, and (sigh) blogging. I hope 2016 -- or the 11 1/2 months of it that remain -- will be good for y'all, with publications and credentials galore.


A H Zeller said...

Harold, I hope there will be some blogging. But keep your focus and keep up the good work!

Kerry Scott said...

I hope you'll consider writing an APGQ article on what brought about the shift in focus from client research to client editing. I'm very interested in what makes people choose their area of focus, and what makes them decide to shift gears.

Harold Henderson said...

Thanks, Alan. I hope so too -- I guess time will tell! Maybe I can do one a week if I keep 'em short ;-)

Harold Henderson said...

Kerry -- I like the idea, you should mention it to Christy. But if I wrote it, the article would be more autobiography than generally applicable advice. At this point I am more concerned to get family material archived and researched and published than I am to build up a business. (And editing comes easier to me, incurs fewer expenses and less time than client research. Plus I already do a certain amount gratis.) So it would actually be more like an AARP article (if they were realistic): make sure you get the right stuff finished before your final deadline! -- Harold P.S. Don't YOU quit blogging, nobody else combines humor and being right better!