Posts Tagged ‘Family Stories’

Why YOU should write your story!

Monday, August 31st, 2015


My mother and a few siblings overcoming their past.

Family stories are important in sharing bonds with each other and imparting family history. But for children, appreciating family stories actually increases their self-esteem. Since kids learn from our stories, it’s important to write them down while we can.  And as truthfully as we can.

From small details to larger stories, my mother’s sister revised history.

“Mother and Father?” muttered my mom after my aunt shared a story about their parents.  “They were Ma and Pa in our family.”

Suddenly, gone were the lean years.  My grandfather never drank.  All was rosy in their past lives.

Why do families change their stories?

“It sounds better,” said my mom, of her sister’s tales.  “But it’s not true.”

“Mom,” I assured her.  “It wasn’t your fault you were poor and your pa was an alcoholic.”

Understanding why people act the way they do gives more layers of meanings to family stories. But for families sharing a legacy, the Pollyanna picture rather than grim reality is easier for them to face and they won’t have to fear possible judgement.

Actually sharing the less-than-picture-perfect tales are vital for family members.  We learn from longings, wishes, and regrets.  Cautionary tales show how to learn and move beyond mistakes, sorrows, and tragedies.  People grow from these experiences and strengthen bonds perhaps more than through the happy, contented moments in our lives.

“There’s nothing to writing,” said author Red Smith.  All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein.”

Writing Prompts:

  1.  Write about your life from the moment of your first memories.   Use photos to jog your memory.
  2. What was going on in the world during the time?  Your community?  Neighborhood? You may begin your stories chronologically, but you don’t have to stick to this format.   What moments in your life were emotional for you?  Why?  Your favorite moments, scary times, funny anecdotes, and tragedies all should be explored.
  3. Interview others in your life as you grew up.  What is their take on the experiences you shared together?
  4. Listen to music of the time.  Remember the foods you ate.  Senses help us to recall our thoughts and actions.


Family Stories Short Story Contest – First Prize $1000!

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

Short Story Contest Family Stories

Free Short Story Writing Contest “Family Stories”

Maybe not every family does have its secrets, but they sure do have their stories! Fiction or nonfiction, we want to read yours. The short stories could be about your family in the past, your family in the future, an imaginary family, a family of ducks or a family of your friends.

Enter your short story about families in BookRix’s free writing contest “Family Stories” now. The story must relate to families in some way. Tell us your story and share it with other readers to win cash and fame. In addition to the cash prize, the contest winner will receive free proofreading and editing services (of up to 3,000 words), courtesy of Elite Editing.

Community Voting – December 21, 2009 to February 23, 2010
Jury Voting– February 24, 2010 to March 15, 2010

Sitting this one out? You can still help your fellow BookRixers by reading their contest books and voting for your favorite stories. Our readers choose the top ten stories, which will then be reviewed by our independent jury. You also could win prizes for voting — when you vote, you enter into a raffle to win Amazon vouchers worth $20.

$1,800.00 in cash prizes to win for authors.

10 Amazon Vouchers each worth $20 to win for readers.

The contest starts on December 21, 2009. Authors must register their stories for the competition by February 23, 2010, 12 pm (EDT) / 9 am (PDT). To enter, you must write a short story that has anything to do with family. Until February 23, 2010 readers can vote for their favorite stories. Readers’ votes determine the top 10 stories. Afterward, these top 10 stories will be given to an independent jury. The jury will choose the three best short stories out of the final 10 stories to win first, second and third place prizes. All winners will be announced on or before March 15th, 2010.

Prizes for authors:
First Prize: $1000
Second Prize: $500
Third Prize: $300

Prizes for readers:
10 Amazon Vouchers (each worth $20) will be raffled for free among all readers who have voted on at least one contest book.

Good luck to all!