My current run of workshops for the Royal Voluntary Service Virtual Village Hall are called ‘How to Write A Book’, aimed at getting people to put together a collection of stories and memories from their own lives as a Christmas gift for friends and relatives. The idea was partly prompted by my passion for getting people to record and share the stories of their lives (in whatever way works best for them, but with my greatest interest being writing, of course!) and partly from having the wonderful gift of my dad’s life story, typed up a little bit at a time after he retired. He’s gone, now, but I’m so glad that in collecting those stories – and discussing them with us afterwards – there are very few questions about his life that I didn’t get to ask him.
My dad’s stories are printed off on plain paper and sit in a ring binder on my shelf, waiting for me to jazz them up into something more attractive. But in the workshops, as well giving prompts for several stories each session, I also discuss ways people might collect their stories together into a low-cost gift that reflects their own circumstances and interests.
I’m using the sessions as the impetus for me to do the same, and as a scrapbooker, have chosen to print each piece off and stick it in a £5 album I bought from a local stationer’s shop. Putting it together quickly before last Friday’s Facebook Live session meant it’s not as ‘scrapbooked’ as I’d like (not least because I lent my papers and cutters to someone and need to ask for them back!) But they give an idea of what can be done – and I’ll be showing other ideas over the remaining 4 weeks.
And you’ll find me on Facebook Live for the remaining sessions as follows:
Thursday 27th October from 11 am to 12 pm
Thursday 3rd November from 11 am to 12 pm
Thursday 10th November from 11 am to 12 pm
Friday 18th November from 11 am to 12 pm
Why not join me? And if you make a book, you could send me a photo of what it looks like, to inspire others!
Below are two diagrams I mentioned in the second workshop which can be used to record memories of the people around you in your childhood years.