24 April 2014

Jamboree - Meet the Speakers: Dawn Parrett Thurston MA

Dawn Parrett Thurston’s personal history writing courses have been called “life changing,” and “the class I’ve long been looking for.” In the last 17 years, she has helped hundreds of students write and publish their family histories at Santiago Canyon College in Orange, where she received the “Faculty Excellence Award” in 2008. Dawn’s students repeatedly win top prizes in family history writing competitions. She has also shared her expertise with students at the University of Utah and Brigham Young University, and at national conferences, including Jamboree, FGS, and the Association of Personal Historians.

Dawn began researching her family lines when she was in her early twenties and has written a family history of her Scots coal-mining grandparents, published in 1996, and a multiple-generation family history of her paternal line titled The Parrett Family: Their Story is America’s Story, published in 2014. In 2007 Signature Books published her book, Breathe Life into Your Life Story: How to Write a Story People Will WANT to Read, a compilation of ideas and writing techniques she teaches in her classes.

Raised in Orange County, where she still resides, Dawn earned her bachelor’s degree in English from UCLA and a master’s in communications from Cal State University, Fullerton. Dawn is a member of the Genealogical Speakers Guild, the International Society for Family History Writers and Editors, and the Association of Personal Historians.

SU005 Sunday June 8, 8:30-9:30 a.m.
Turn Your Genealogy Data into a Fascinating Family History

This session will teach research, organization, and writing techniques that will help the writer shape genealogy facts into an interesting story people will WANT to read.

SU012 Sunday June 8, 10:00-11:30 a.m.
How to Write a Personal History that Captures Your Interesting Life

Many of us would like to write about our lives so our descendants will know who we are, what we experienced, and how we felt about the important issues of our time. We want our stories not only to be informative, but also compelling. This class will use proven techniques from the best writers to demonstrate how this can be accomplished.

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