One day, in my workplace, I realized that I had the same reaction when I was given a particular kind of new project. Since at work I’m process-oriented, I quickly analyzed why I had this reaction and I realized it’s because we didn’t have a process in place. I created a process and now it’s all a piece of cake. Cake without a lot of re-work.
So I made a process for genealogy, too.
I begin by printing a family group sheet (FGS), checklist and notes pages. I find that I need to do it the old fashioned way- pen and paper; I just can’t do it on the computer. It’s much easier for me to enter it all later, when I have everything at hand.
I gather the three printed sheets (mine are attached at GoogleDocs here), my Stuck-On-Sources (
SOS) from www.svcgg.org, blank sheets of paper, and a pen (not pencil). I begin by putting the surname at the top of the FGS. I have binders for each of the main surnames I am researching, so this surname may not be the surname of the person I’m newly working on.
That main surname is the only item that I don’t have an
SOS for. For anything else that I write on the FGS, I have an SOS that I label at the top with the item (i.e. DOB), a number, and then I detail the source. If more than one item is from this source, I still make an SOS for it, but I just number it the same as the other and skip all the other source crap writing.
Once I document what I just found, I then get to collect new stuff. Rather than frolic through the internet, flippantly gathering cookies and bookmarks, I use the checklist and keep tabs,
SOS-ing and jotting down as I go.
When I’m bored of my new ancestor, I enter the data into my database and make a list of what else I can check on later on down the road.