browser icon
You are using an insecure version of your web browser. Please update your browser!
Using an outdated browser makes your computer unsafe. For a safer, faster, more enjoyable user experience, please update your browser today or try a newer browser.

About Us

This blog, and accompanying anthology, is the work of  participants on the Faber Academy Writing Family History course in 2011.  As part of the course, we each produced a synopsis of our proposed books and a sample piece, which can be read in the anthology, Writing Family History, published by Faber Academy.

We are a diverse group, each with a unique story to tell. The stories represented span centuries and continents, from India to Italy, Bulgaria to America, South Africa  to Kenya, and, closer to home, London, Wales, Yorkshire and Westmorland. Each family’s story takes places against a exciting historical backdrop and social context.

With this blog we hope to share our journey with you – as we research, struggle, triumph, discover and attempt to give a voice to the stories of the past.

To learn more about our stories visit

2 Responses to About Us

  1. Julian Bowman

    I have recently completed writing “The Parents in Rhyme: Their Life Death and Times” and wondered if you would be interested in posting a blog I have written to introduce the book.

    It’s not a commercial proposition to write an epic poem in 5,000 rhyming couplets that is part-biography and part social history, centring on sexual abuse and its impact across generations. But after my parents died in quick succession three years ago, that’s what I ended up producing. Told chronologically from the 1930s it builds a portrait of two lives that are at once immensely ordinary but also extraordinary.

    The story is told in decades, covering tough childhoods and murky pasts in 1930s East End London; evacuation in 1940 and then abuse as teenagers in the post-war years; falling in love amidst rationing and the rising welfare state in the 1950s; building an ideal nuclear family in suburbia in the 1960s; hidden abuse and traumas in the 1970s; disturbing revelations, crisis and collapse in the 1980s; reinvention and reconnection in the 1990s; creativity and final adventures in the 2000s and final deterioration, hauntings and death in the 2010s.

    The choice of rhyming couplets as a medium may seem odd. In part it is in recognition of the remarkable interdependency of my mother and father, known affectionately as “the parents” – they were such a doublet that they deserved rhyming couplets! But it is also partly an act of protest against my father, a well-respected published poet who hated rhyme.

    Anyway, if you would be interested in receiving a blog about this – which provides further details – please let me know.

    Take care


  2. nick barlay

    Dear Writing Family History Authors,

    I wondered the following would be of interest to you… If not, please excuse the intrusion…

    I’m an author/novelist/ family historian who has been teaching family history writing courses since my last book, Scattered Ghosts, a history of own family, was published in 2013. Having run several masterclasses for the Guardian programme, I’m planning to run one-day courses, with potential follow-ups, for people wanting to turn research into narrative, or turn progress works-in-progress.

    There’s more here:
    I’m trying to gauge interest in this, so any feedback would be gratefully received!

    Thanks, and all the best for your work,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *