Last year I reviewed my ten favorite moments of 2009, and set some personal goals for 2010. First I would like to see how successful I was at achieving my 2010 goals:
“1. Continue to write more articles. My goal will be to have at least ten articles accepted in 2010 (if not necessarily published during the year, due to editorial lead times). You know what, why sell myself short? Let’s make it twenty articles!”
Made some pretty good progress here. In 2010, I had the following articles published in various magazines:
“Social Networking: Unplugged.” Discovering Family History. Jan/Feb 2010.
“‘Tweet’ Your Family History: Using Twitter for Genealogy.” Internet Genealogy. Feb/Mar 2010.
“Autopsy of a Death Record: What You Need to Know.” Discovering Family History. Mar/Apr 2010.
“Indirect Lineage.” Family Chronicle. May/Jun 2010.
“Social Security Applications: What You Need to Know!” Family Chronicle. Jul/Aug 2010.
“Research and Collaborate: MS Live Workspace.” Internet Genealogy. Aug/Sep 2010.
“Understanding Passenger Lists.” Family Chronicle. Sep/Oct 2010.
“Crafting an Effective Research Plan.” Family Chronicle. Nov/Dec 2010.
Two other articles have been accepted, but not yet published. Keep your eyes open!
“2. Become a Certified Genealogist. My “clock” is up at the end of February, and I am steadily working on my portfolio. Hopefully, the results will come back in my favor, to demonstrate my commitment to the highest research standards.”
I filed for a year extension, in order to give myself more time to cross the t’s, and dot the I’s. The clock ends in about a month, so we’ll see how quickly I can finish it up, or if another extension is on the horizon. ;(
“3. Present for local historical and genealogical societies, and local conferences….”
I took off like a champion in 2010, presenting 12 times (including two lectures on one of those occasions). I currently have just one lecture scheduled so far in 2011, but if anyone is looking for a lecturer for their genealogical society, library, or other organization, I am available!
“4. Publish a few books. I currently have several books in various stages of planning and completion, including one on the Civil War draft in Maryland (containing the names of over 20,000 free and enslaved men) that will be published within the next month or so.”
I didn’t finish that Civil War draft book in the “next month or so,” but I did finish it in October 2010. I also published two other books, containing transcriptions of the first two registers of the Slave Claims Commissions, for a total of four print books. I also wrote and published an e-book Research Guide for Prince George’s County, Maryland, the first of a series of research guides on all of the counties of Maryland.
“5. Publish at least one article in a scholarly journal.”
I had one article published in the Maryland Genealogical Society Journal in the April 2010 issue, entitled, “Identifying the Last Slave-Owner of Freedmen in Maryland Using Local Records.”
“6. Complete more research into my study on the slaves of Prince George’s County, Maryland. My notes currently contain the names and final owners of over 6,000 slaves. I want to flesh out the details of the lives of many of these people this year.”
I was able to finish extracting information on the slaves identified in two of the Prince George’s County Register of Wills Inventory Books. Where possible, I have matched these slaves from the estate inventories with later records.
“7. Publish my Examiner.com column more often. Since 22 April 2009, when the first article was published, I have published 79 articles. This is an average of 1 article every 3 or so days. I will try to bring that average up to about 1 article every 2 or so days.”
I won’t even try to calculate the average. I know it went down.
In the springtime, due to time restraints, I made the decision to give up administration of these Genealogy Trails websites. However, I would like to recommend the sites to all researchers—don’t just check them for information on your families, but please contribute as well. These volunteers work very hard to make information available online at no cost.
“9. Find a good balance between professional/client research, and research for personal publishing projects. …”
Due to uncontrollable circumstances, I am now a full-time, self-employed professional genealogist. This change has forced the balance to shift to much more client research, in order to pay the bills. However, this has so far been a great experience, and is providing many more projects for use in case studies, etc., as well as the income that it provides directly. Somehow I have also made the time to work on publishing projects, etc., publishing four books in 2010, with at least three more coming in the first quarter of 2011.
“10. Continue to explore new and innovative sources for revenue based in genealogical and historical research. If my desire to become self-employed in this field, then I will have to be able to generate enough income to support myself and my family.”
See #9. Still looking and still working.