Saturday, January 1, 2011

2011 genealogy goals

I'm not a big resolution setter. I find it a glass-half-empty kind of exercise. In a fit of New Year's enthusiasm you set yourself a list of resolutions. A year goes by and you berate yourself for the things you didn't accomplish... but you know next year will be better... Repeat. What fun.

On the other hand, I would like to get to the end of a year and reflect on all the things I did, and the progress I have made. So, here is my list of long-term-goals-that-don't-have-to-be-done-in-2011-but-it-would-be-nice-if-they-were.
  1. Keep blogging:
    I am currently blogging a little over once a week on average, which feels about right. My goal is to at least maintain this level of effort.
  2. Increase commenting:
    I currently comment on only a fraction of the blogs I read. I would like to increase this (see Geniaus' post Blogging is a two-way street). Unfortunately I could not see any way to track how many comments I have made so I will have to go on my perception of whether I am commenting more when I assess myself against these goals next year.
  3. Get my data online:
    I have set up a personal research data website www.twigsofyore.com and a few family members have joined up. I want to have some sort of a public opening of the site and make it more widely known among my research contacts. I currently have 47 photos and 15 documents uploaded - I estimate the final figure should be more like 500+.
  4. Get organised:
    In 2010 I changed my filing system. I have moved all hard copy documents of birth, death and marriage certificates over to the new system, but still have 54 electronic version yet to move. Then I need to cross-check the hard copies against electronic versions to ensure that each document is filed both ways. Most other documents have been moved to the new system already, the notable exception being census records.
  5. Stay focused:
    Through 2010 I reduced the amount of time I spent poking around aimlessly in various databases. My goal is to feel that most of my genealogy time has been productive and if at any point it does not feel productive, either go back to my research plans or get off the computer and on with my life.
  6. Study and learn:
    I would like to do more genealogy study - this time something assessible to see if more formal study suits me. I would also like to attend at least one genealogy event, if the opportunity arises.
  7. Contact with other researchers:
    Over the last several months I have been in active contact with four to five other researchers at any one time. It has been incredibly valuable, not only the exchange of documents but also the discussion and bouncing of ideas. My goal is to maintain contact with those I am currently corresponding with and to aim for similarly valuable relationships with future contacts. 
  8. DNA:
    I have spent a fair sum of money on DNA tests recently. My goal is to learn more about the possibilities these tests create and to exploit the results to the full.
  9. Memberships:
    It's only the last year and a bit that I have (re)joined any genealogy societies. My goal is to at least maintain my current memberships.
  10. Publication:
    My goal is to start writing up a document about one of my ancestors, with the aim of producing a booklet for family members. Hopefully the first of many.
  11. Reading:
    I have enough "how to write your family history" books. I would like to find and read examples of interesting, well documented, family history books to inspire me with 10 above. Suggestions welcome.
  12. Giving back:
    This is hard. My currently level of giving back is minimal. I have tried in the past to participate in indexing projects but have had great difficulty getting pages back within the allotted time. I find getting out of the house difficult while I have little children which rules out more possibilities. I would like to find some way of making a contribution. Text corrections on Trove are looking like a possibility, but I will remain open to other ways of making a contribution.
  13. Keep up with the latest developments in genealogy:
    Is this an excuse to keep reading dozens of blogs and playing around on Twitter? Why yes, I think it is! 
Thirteen genealogy goals. Lucky I'm not superstitious. Upon contemplating this list, I think that I will make just one resolution after all...
  1. Don't bite off more than I can chew!I failed this at times last year. 2011 will be better, I know it!!! 

8 comments:

  1. Right Shelly,

    No.2 - I see your with blogger so this wont apply to you but if i reply to everyone using my wordpress profile then i can view all my replies to anyone in my wordpress settings.

    No.1 - I blog only about once a month. Suits me fine and as you stated, do what feels right for you.

    No.12 - Its a two way street no doubt and i certaintly make my stuff available to folks.

    Memberships - i'm currently memberless. Going to join Parramatta as my next one.

    No.5 is staying focused - something i've made sure i've done. For me focusing is not letting my tree get out of hand by just adding heaps and heaps of people.

    Good luck with your genealogy in 2011.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Shelley,

    Re 12 - Giving Back - You are being a bit hard on yourself here.
    You Blog, You Tweet, You are about to publish your tree online - that's a lot more then many people do.
    Re Trove - My personal policy is, when time permits, to correct the entries above and below the ones I have found for my interest. If I have more time I try to correct the whole column. Same goes for articles I find on Trove.
    Every little bit helps.

    I, for one, have benefitted greatly from your giving in 2010 and look forward to taking from you in 2011.

    Genealogy is our hobby - don't let it become a burden.

    Cheers, Geniaus

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Shelley

    I enjoyed this blog for the ideas it gives me, and am particularly attracted to your goal no.5 on staying focused. As someone who has only come to genealogy recently I have struggled with focusing on what I am doing, be that a particulary person or family, and have been too easliy carried away on some tangent or other.

    I will write this up as my no.1 goal, and maybe no.2 should be starting a blog - to write no.1 goal on to keep me focused...

    Happy 2011!
    Tanya

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Shelley,

    For No 11, one book I am planning to read is "The journey takers". I heard about it on the Genealogy Gems Podcast and in this review at Geneamusings
    http://goo.gl/uUzeo

    I have the same goal as your No. 10. and I keep reading more on how to write. I think perhaps I should pick one ancestor and just start writing. As they say you can't edit a blank page!

    Good luck with your goals.

    Anne

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi Shelley
    Thanks for your comment on my blog! I like your idea of long term goals for your research instead of New Year's resolutions. I have some similar goals - organisation, focus and to increase my commenting on other blogs. I often don't know what to say but I guess the more I do it the better I'll get.
    Kylie :-)

    ReplyDelete
  6. hi Shelley

    Love your posts and the challenge for Australia Day.

    Re #5 now I've got into reading so many other blogs I'll also have to stay a bit focused.

    #11: All books have to be deposited with the National Library so they're a good source to use if you can get there -or via inter-library loan. AIGS (and QFHS also) has an annual prize for family history so their list of titles would be a start as they'd all have a different approach.

    And stay with ordering those LDS microfilms-they're gold...I've solved many mysteries with them...and started some others, but that's FH:-)

    ReplyDelete
  7. hi Shelley

    Love your posts and the challenge for Australia Day.

    Re #5 now I've got into reading so many other blogs I'll also have to stay a bit focused.

    #11: All books have to be deposited with the National Library so they're a good source to use if you can get there -or via inter-library loan. AIGS (and QFHS also) has an annual prize for family history so their list of titles would be a start as they'd all have a different approach.

    And stay with ordering those LDS microfilms-they're gold...I've solved many mysteries with them...and started some others, but that's FH:-)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hi Shelley,

    For No 11, one book I am planning to read is "The journey takers". I heard about it on the Genealogy Gems Podcast and in this review at Geneamusings
    http://goo.gl/uUzeo

    I have the same goal as your No. 10. and I keep reading more on how to write. I think perhaps I should pick one ancestor and just start writing. As they say you can't edit a blank page!

    Good luck with your goals.

    Anne

    ReplyDelete