Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Interview with Dear Myrtle

As she was driving across country, a couple of weeks ago, Dear Myrtle took a few moments and answered some questions for me.

Dear Myrtle is the pen-name for Pat Richly-Erickson, a nationally know speaker and blogger in the genealogy world.

What follows is my interview with her.

1.) When did you become Dear Myrt?
                     In 1995. I was teaching "techie" classes on the computer and wanted a down home friendly, grandmotherly type of character to make the class less threatening. I chose my grandmother Myrt.

2.) How did you choose that persona?
                    Myrt was my paternal grandmother. I could talk like her and write like her, using her colloquialisms and all and not have to worry about the grammar police. 

3.) When did you start writing?
                     Dick Eastman was writing everyday, so I made a list of 365 things to talk about. Once I started on my list, questions followed and I never had a problem coming up with things to talk or write about. In the 80's the first electronic form was of course the message boards, in 1995 I wrote AOL articles. 

4.) Why did you begin writing about genealogy?
                     I always had an interest in family, history, recipes, and family stories, so it just seemed like the right thing to write about.

5.) When did you begin doing genealogy?
                     At age 14 I made a hand calligraphy pedigree chart of my family. 

6.) What peeked your interest?
                     I was doing research in the early 80's because of a discrepancy concerning my Grandmother's birth date.

7.) What was your "best" discovery?
                     When I determined that William Henry A. Phillips was in the Civil War and I was able to order his military file from NARA. I had to order file after file for different William Phillips. But I finally got the right one.

8.) Who do you see as your audience?
                      Beginning to Intermediate Genealogists

9.) What all are you doing now? What are you active in?
                       I write my Dear Myrtle Blog, I produce Webinars, lecture, I founded GeneaWebinars, it kind of runs itself. I am active in GeneaQuilters and of course I'm very active in my role as Wife, Mother and Grandmother. 

More from Dear Myrt/Pat in my next post. Hope you enjoy her interview with me and learn a little about this wonderful woman.

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