Are you interested in your local history?  Since Images of America: Woodlake came out August 17th I have received calls and ideas daily about what still needs to be told in my local community of Woodlake. So, I write histories. How does that sound for a marketing line? Because many stories did not and could not get published in my first book, someone has a lot of work to do, and I’m available.

final cover proof

I hate to SOUND so proud, but I AM proud.  I can’t believe the responses and synergy that came from writing this book, even though you will find me at 1,000,000th place on the Amazon website and better at about 927,000th place on the Barnes and Noble site.

Edmiston 2-15RDuring the writing and research process, I learned that many organizations, even schools, don’t know anything about their history, and don’t know where to find the information either.  As I dug for Woodlake history, I found some amazing treasure chests of people, who were just waiting for the opportunity to share what they had with someone who could use it.  Pictures and information are power, Shared in a library and museum these pictures are available for other writers as well as me to use.

Sally Pace BD941

This picture from teacher Sally Pace’s birthday parties in the seventies was much too risqué to go in the book!

One contributor, Ellie Cain, took time copy old family pictures, wove short narratives about them and bound them into a spiral book. Years ago she sent the book to a few friends and relatives.  Robert Edmiston shared it with me.  I contacted the address pasted in the back of the book, and she emailed me.  Her family will live on, and people will enjoy adorable pictures like this one because she shared one homemade book with a relative.Mill Inn-4When I visited one church looking for pictures, the pastor handed me a poster board from 1984.  He allowed me to tear off the pictures and scan them. The ink from notes written on the back soaked through.  Most of the churches in Woodlake did not have any pictures. Only one of the 14 churches in our little town have their history written.  The little church my first husband pastored – no history that I know of – (but I have tons of pictures that no one knows about).  One church took a picture for me, and one church gave me pictures a book and video about the history of their church.  1 Southern Baptist-2bI spoke the other day at career day at Woodlake High School. I passed out pictures, and asked the students which pictures should make it into a book about Woodlake, and why. None of them knew the people involved, so they thought that many of them didn’t pertain to our town. Once I told the stories behind the pictures, they knew offspring, and the picture became relevant, and the students started to get excited about local history. One student shared with me a few days later that she bought the book. Maybe they will write the next books.

Leads come to me almost daily now.  I see a need, and maybe you do too in your neighborhoods and areas of interest. Organizations , businesses, churches and families need a history.  Without history – even if they are still there, no one knows who they really are. So I’m sure I will write another local history book. What history remains to be discovered? Maybe it will be your story or the story of someone you love.

I Write Histories

What about you? What are you writing? Do you need me?