Personal Historian is computer software that assists you in writing a personal history
about yourself, another individual, or a family. In this tour, we will look at some
of the major features of Personal Historian and how they will help you write a complete,
interesting, and entertaining life story.
Personal Historian breaks the history down into small, manageable "topics"—
each with its own title, date, written text, and even pictures. Topics make it easy
to work on your history whenever you have the time—whether you have 10 minutes or
10 hours. Personal Historian automatically saves your work and makes it easy to
start where you left off.
The main screen displays all of the topics in the project. If a topic has a date,
Personal Historian also displays the individual's age on that date. On the main
screen, it is easy to sort and filter your topics.
The timeline gives an overall view of the person's life showing how many topics
there are for each year. This makes it easy to see gaps in this history that you
may wish to fill-in. The timeline also makes it easy to pinpoint topics from specific
dates. By simply dragging the ends of the timeline, you can "zoom in" and display
only the topics that pertain to that range of dates.
There is no need to start from scratch when you use Personal Historian as the software
can bring in events, stories, pictures, and documents from a variety of sources.
Personal Historian imports names, dates, and even notes from your favorite genealogical
software and places them into your timeline.
The software also includes an extensive library of "LifeCapsules" on a variety of
subjects. LifeCapsules contain timelines, historical facts, cultural trivia, and
memory triggers that give color, context, and interest to the history.
Personal Historian also imports your word processor documents and photographs so
that your existing work can be effortlessly incorporated into your histories.
With Personal Historian, you don't need a "start from the beginning" approach to
writing a life history. You can choose any topic from the main screen (or add a
new, blank topic), work as much as you like on it, and save it for later. Personal
Historian keeps track of the status of each topic so you can see which topics are
complete, which topics still need work, and which topics you haven't even started.
You can even assign topics to "categories"—each with its own icon, color and font
When writing about a topic, one of the most overlooked steps is to organize facts
and ideas before you begin writing. While this can normally be difficult and frustrating,
Personal Historian makes it a breeze to brainstorm and organize your facts, thoughts,
memories, and feelings.
The "Organizer" tool allows you to write down ideas as they come to you. Using the
mouse or keyboard, you can easily move the ideas into coherent groups and logical
orders until you have a working outline for your topic.
you're ready to actually write about a topic, Personal Historian contains a built-in
word processor that not only makes it easy to write, but makes it easy to write
well. The built-in spell check and thesaurus are just the beginning.
The readability check lets you know how readable and interesting your writing will
be to others. It lets you know if your sentences are too long, too short—
if your words are too simple or too complex, and even if you're writing in the passive
voice instead of the active voice.
When you're ready to publish your masterpiece, Personal Historian is still there
to help. It takes all of the topics that you choose and puts them together into
a finished, publishable document. You can publish your history directly to your
personal printer, to a PDF file that you can share with others, or to an RTF file
that you can read into your favorite word processor for additional tweaking.
As you can see, Personal Historian is the most complete solution to writing a personal
history about yourself, another individual, or a family. From start to finish, Personal
Historian makes writing a life story fast, easy, and fun!
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