Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The Noun Project: Person, Place or Thing?

Photo of our hardcover Dictionary, privately held, Midge Frazel, 2017
The Noun Project: Person, Place or Thing?
A Bullet Journaling Project for 2017

I wouldn't be surprised if, as you read the word noun, you parroted back, "A noun is a person place or thing." because if you are of a certain age, you were taught by your elementary school teacher to recite the definitions of sentence structure. However, the real definition is a whole lot more complicated. Read the real definition here in the online version of this print dictionary. Evidently, we learned the child's version of noun. Unless you majored in English, you probably didn't give it another thought.

There is so much that doesn't fit into your favorite online or offline genealogy application.

Here's the THING...
Sure, the person and the dates and sometimes the places fit neatly but the things of like don't
  • organizations, clubs and organizations people belonged to
  • neighborhoods, addresses and houses lived in 
  • family businesses and the other people who worked for them
  • military history (and the places they served)
  • sources of information on a surname (compiled genealogies)
  • groups of people buried together in a plot (some of who are not related to the family)

I ran into this when I tried to keep track of the research I did for my family businesses. No matter how I tried, I couldn't find a way to record, cite and analyze information past the basics. For a long time, I used a research log, a list of citations and a timeline.

However, a project like that, that could be turned into a memory book for my family was not easy to record, write or set aside until more information was gathered. This is why I spent several months learning about bullet journaling. The classic method was not "genealogy specific" so I started working on a method that suited me. 

I am now working with a planner system, a bullet journal and a software writing tool (Scrivener) and a paper notebook. It sounds complex but since most of my work is done at home this will work for me. I stopped taking client work and became retired. I am now only working on my own family as was recommended to me by several genealogists. 

This is my plan for 2017 and by the end of the year I hope to report progress.

The distractions are endless.

I am even distracted by DNA, which I started to learn and immediately saw it as a specialty and not something for every genealogist. I was WRONG. But, keeping track of that was harder than I thought.

I will be seventy this year, my health is not perfect and I am trying to be practical about the total picture. I'd like to ENJOY genealogy once again. I am working on it but lately, genealogy hasn't been fun. 

I suspect that others may feel the same. Do you?

Copyright: Erin Condren, 2016-2017

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