Mining Your Family Reunions

What I like best about family reunions—and what is of best use to me as a writer—is listening to aunts, uncles, and cousins talk about those who have preceded us. The stories are not only slices of history, but they are also a part of me.

Within most families are story tellers, history buffs, and genealogists, determined to help keep family relationships alive.

Family traditions are rooted deep. We all have a need to belong and feel loved. Families may not be perfect, but they do unite us.

As one who enjoys writing historical fiction, I look at old photos of family gatherings and imagine the different personalities, their wants and needs, and the obstacles that kept them from achieving their goals. I see the love and timeless warmth in their eyes, or the opposite. .

Invariably, family reunions spark story ideas for me. And just being with family and remembering the past ignites my creativity in ways that leave me excited to return to my keyboard.

DiAnn Mills combines an adventuresome spirit with unforgettable characters to create action-packed novels. She has 50 books in print and has sold more than 1.5 million copies. Her Sworn to Protect won a 2011 Christy Award in the Contemporary Romance Category. Breach of Trust won the same award in 2010. Her latest, The Chase, released in March. DiAnn is the Craftsman mentor for the Christian Writers Guild. Visit her online.

Family image: xedos4 /

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