A Biography Can Be Your Family’s Most Valuable Heirloom

Your grandfather may have left you an heirloom watch in his will, but did he remember to also give you his stories? Or you may be planning to bequeath to your granddaughter a precious doll that belonged to your mother, but what about your memories–and your mother’s? Sometimes we make a plan to give valued keepsakes to our offspring, but not something far more valuable to them – the stories of our lives. Tales of love, loss, and achievement, the details of how you met your spouse, the act of heroism, never discussed, for which your father received a medal. Our stories are what define us.

We all know extraordinary people; many of them are own relatives. Have you recorded their stories yet? Collecting that history, and turning it into a family treasure, can be a longtime dream but difficult to accomplish. With the best of intentions, many family members say they’d like to write their memoirs someday. But for a variety of reasons–lack of time, limited writing experience, computer aversion, or illness–they may not get to it. Likewise, a family member may plan to collaborate with parent or grandparent to write a biography. That can be as challenging as sorting a lifetime of old photos, and success is rare.

That’s where we come in. We’re writers and designers and this is what we do.

We are professional writers, Scott McCredie and Peggy Sturdivant. We also work with Jenny Wilkson, a longtime professional book designer. By commissioning us to do the work, you’re not only assured of getting this important job completed, but also of a high-quality book that your family will be proud to own, show to friends, or perhaps even donate a copy to a library or historical society.

A biography is unusual in that its value increases as time goes by. Long after the biography subject passes on, their words, their philosophy of life, their attitudes and opinions will live on, a vivid record of an important link in your family’s history. The biography, for as long as it exists, will inform generation after generation about their ancestor’s life. It recounts the important dates, places, names, and events that shaped their destiny. Those funny, poignant, irreplaceable family stories will be preserved forever.

Some folks commission a biography of themselves to give as a gift to their children and grandchildren. Others commission a biography of an older relative–mothers, father, grandparents, aunts and uncles.

Don’t put it off until it’s too late. Commissioning a professionally produced biography is the greatest gift you can give to your family–now and for generations to come.