Start Your Book

Decided that a book from Rooted in Story is something you want for your family? Great! Check out the following steps that lead you through the book-making process. Soon you'll be on your way to creating that unique compilation about your family. The steps below are highly recommended, but if at anytime you feel the need to jump ahead and contact me--feel free! You can also check out my blog, where I discuss various aspects of the family book assembling process, writing, and family stuff.

1. Choose a Format.

Every person and every family is unique. So is each RiS book. Each is specially crafted with your purpose, situation, and style in mind. Think about what kind of book you would like to make and who you want to give it to. Perhaps it's for a grandchild, a child, yourself, or the whole family. Based on your purpose and reader, choose from one of five formats:

2. Brainstorm ideas about what you're looking for in a book.

Write down ideas about what you want the book to say, how you want it to sound, who you are making it for, its design, colors, themes, and the like. Use these questions and writing prompts to get started thinking about what to write about. If you get stuck or you're not sure how to proceed, just contact me. We'll start brainstorming!

3. Start compiling family stories, memories, photographs—whatever you want to include in the book.

Rooted in Story brings together detailed stories about family members, events, and experiences with visuals like photographs. Yet you're not limited to words and pictures. Doing a biography of Grandma and want to include her famous sweet roll recipe? You can! Other ideas include:

  • Reflective essays
  • Family trees
  • Documents (i.e.: birth, marriage, or death; service records; etc.)
  • Information on family heirlooms—from keepsakes to wedding rings
  • Family recipes
  • Quotation or collage page

4. Contact family members who might be able to help.

Family support is one key to a successful Rooted in Story project. If your book will cover areas that your relatives might know more about, it's recommended you contact them at this time. Explain what you plan to do, and see if they have ideas, stories, and/or things to contribute. Remember, you may find some relatives who think your project is a great idea, but aren't able or willing to help much. Patience, charity, and encouragement will help.

5. Contact Rooted in Story.

After you've got some ideas about format, themes, and content, we'll discuss your plan and ideas more in depth. I will suggest additional ideas on content, design, and the like. I'll also estimate costs, so we can make any adjustments based on your budget.

I look forward to working with you!

Rachel Cochran
Owner, Rooted in Story