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Write About the Stars in Your Family Tree

2021 Genealogy Writing Challenge

Who are the stars in your family tree? Have you written about them? Now is your chance with a bite-sized challenge from the Southern California Genealogical Society.

Few of us are related to famous relatives, but each of us has someone who is worthy of honor in writing. SCGS can help you let your ancestors shine with the publication of their book The Stars in Your Family.

The 600-Word Family History Writing Challenge

Book Cover for The Stars in Your Family Tree

Regardless of whether you're a member of SCGS, you're invited to submit a 600-word article about no more than two ancestors. Your ancestor might be an old codger, the most adventurous, or the most inspiring. They might also be a relative whose story you love sharing again and again.

To qualify for inclusion in The Stars in Your Family book, available for purchase from Amazon in June 2021, your articles should meet the following requirements:

  • A short story about a star ancestor no longer than 600 words in length.

  • Submit no more than two entries.

  • Submit entries to in MS Word format.

  • You DO NOT have to be an SCGS member to participate.

The SCGS book committee will begin accepting entries on Monday, February 1st until Monday, March 15th.

If you wish to submit a photograph or illustration along with your article, you can do so. For additional guidelines, review this document.

How to Write a 600-Word Family History Article

When I was invited to participate in The Stars in Your Family initiative, I was initially overwhelmed. I've written lengthy articles about 120 ancestors and published two family history narrative books. I had several thoughts that perhaps you might share:

  • How can I find enough to say about an ancestor to meet the 600-word limit?

  • How can I shorten my Star's story to 600 words?

  • How can I make honor my ancestor with an interesting story when I'm not good at writing?

As I prepared for this workshop, I developed several story styles and techniques to stretch my story or shrink it while still entertaining my readers.

600 Word Family History Story Styles

Watch this FREE webinar entitled, "Writing About The Stars in Your Family With Ease" to learn how to write one of the following stories styles

After the webinar, you should be prepared to write and then submit your entry on February 1st.

Will you accept the SCGS challenge to "keep your ancestor’s memory alive and become published?"

Need More Writing Tips?

Through the Family History Fanatics Blog and YouTube Channel, I have released numerous articles and videos on how to write about your family. Use the following links to access my writing archive.

If you're new to writing family histories, be sure to get my FREE GUIDE 5 Steps to Write About Your Ancestors Quickly.

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