Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1933290-Scarce-Attention
Rated: E · Essay · Genealogy · #1933290
How can you tell your ancestor's stories, when no one will stop to listen?
"The only factor becoming scarce in a world of abundance is human attention." - Kevin Kelly, Wired magazine

Everyone is too busy! Texting has become the communication of the day. The messages are quick and concise and even the small words are abbreviated or left out altogether. Punctuation has been replaced by e-moticons and misspellings are overlooked. A new language has been created and the magic of words has been forgotten. Free time is scarce and distractions are plentiful. Disconnection through connectivity is the challenge of our age.

With time at such a premium, how can we grasp and keep the attention of the wandering mind? How can we make our family history relevant in an age of instant information? How can we make our ancestors heard in an era where there is already too much noise?

By making their stories short and unobtrusive. Short stories ask little time, yet can ignite the imagination. Through the use of historical fiction, we can breathe life into well-known anecdotes and create a spark of interest into otherwise forgotten family lore. The true character and thoughts of our ancestors will live again when the world they lived in is re-created.

But many genealogists are not writers. They want to inspire the members of their family with the hidden treasures and triumphs they have uncovered. They want to share their passion for family history and the wisdom of the generations that have come before. But they cannot convey the true depth of meaning with words. They fear that these stories will wither and die for lack of interest and the lure of idle industry.

I hope to help them accomplish this goal. I am fascinated by characters and hope to help discover the people behind the names. The stories will, of course, contain fictional elements, but the verifiable facts will remain constant. My interpretation of the motives and feelings of the characters may not be accurate, but they will be plausible. Although some may not agree with my conclusions, at least it will get them thinking, and isn't that truly the point?

© Copyright 2013 Angels in my Ear (aundria_k at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
Writing.Com, its affiliates and syndicates have been granted non-exclusive rights to display this work.
Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1933290-Scarce-Attention