Your photos tell stories.
Did you store away a slew of photos in shoe boxes over the years—and more recently created huge photo files in your computer? (These are perhaps even worse than shoe boxes. At least, photos in shoe boxes are easy to look at vs photos as thumbnails!) Now is the time to write the stories behind your photos.
If your family is like mine, you have photos of people that no one can any longer identify. At best, you might opine “I think that’s someone on my mother’ s side.”
Actions to take to better access your photos.
To help you to make sense of your photo collection, I have gathered the following actions you might take now.
Action #1: Choose a shoe box or computer file.
Whether on your computer or with a manila folder, create a time file label. (For example: 2003) Then create sub files. (January 2003, February 2003, etc.) A subsequent (or alternate) sub-file might contain the name of an event (Dad’s birthday party) or a person’s (Darcy) or any other category of your choosing. Necessary additional work involves printing the photo and placing it in a book or placing it on a web site that functions as a cloud-based photo album. In either case, you will do best to include a detailed caption (which we call “Cameo Narratives” in our flagship photo journaling book The Photo Scribe/How to Write the Stories Behind Your Photos.)
Action #2 For each of your photos, write a Memory List of the who, what, when, where, how, and why.
Include in a descriptive paragraph to accompany a photo or a group of photos. These captions will prove a pleasure to you and your family in years to come.
Action #3 In this digital age, we have too many photos of an occasion. Pare down on photos.
Choose the few (even one or two) best of every pose and discard the others. If you don’t do this now, the task will have to be done later when you have even more photos to work through.
Action #4 Find the best resource materials to help you in this task.
Purchase the Photo Scribe Start Up Package. This package contains many resources to help you to make sense of your photos and to tell the stories you ought not to lose.
I hope you find these suggestions useful in writing the stories behind our photos.
You Need Editing
The big New York publishing houses NEVER publish a manuscript without extensive editing! Why would you?
I offer a free consult to discuss your memoir’s needs and The Memoir Network’s ability to meet them.
You’ll be surprised at how much a professional editor can quickly and effectively help you tweak your story so that you get to say more clearly and dynamically what you have been trying to say. We tend to be good at what we do. Said one client: “I accomplished more with you in six months than I had in ten years writing alone.”
Click here to learn more about how editing can help you complete a better memoir.