May I Introduce To You . . . John Newmark

John Newmark

I have the great pleasure of introducing you to John Newmark of the TransylvanianDutch blog where John shares his personal family history research and experiences.

John has always had an interest in his family history, but in April of 2007 the “genealogy bug” bit him! John didn’t realize how much information was easily obtainable online.  In John’s own words, “once I tasted the low-hanging Internet fruit, I found myself traveling to libraries and cemeteries.” John felt he needed to become addicted first, and that’s where the Internet came in –  “it’s a ‘gateway drug’!

John’s Family and His Blog

John’s family is very supportive, and looks forward to reading his posts.  Several of his readers are regular followers (close kin and distant cousins), and the friends that follow as well often surprise him.

John feels his weekly “Amanuensis Monday” transcriptions of letters and audio are the most anticipated by his family.

How John Follows the Rest of Us

Google Reader is John’s choice to keep up with his blog reading. Along with Google Reader, John finds himself using several Google applications such as Google Maps, Google Books, and Gmail.

John does use FeedBlitz to follow his own blog by way of his email, sort of a form of backup; however, he does not use email for blog reading or updates.

On a typical day, John currently follows 205 genealogy blogs, though there are approximately another 50 blogs or newspaper feeds that are peripheral to his genealogy research that he follows as well.

John’s Thoughts on Blogging

John has been blogging since 2002 on one topic or another. He has been addicted to the written word since he was a teenager in the 1980’s.  John began reciting poetry at local mics (microphones) in the early 1990’s so what would be equivalent to stage fright disappeared long ago.

Most of John’s writings consisted of his thoughts, opinions, or creative imagery and were rarely dealing with facts. John writes professionally as a grant writer for a local non-profit organization, and always had someone who would at least glance at his work before being submitted. When it came to genealogy, John had concerns that he would make a glaring error in his research, and then post the error before catching it.

Having such an instance occur, John corrected the error and moved on, but he still has concerns it may happen again.

Since John had never been anonymous, even before blogging about family history, he was concerned about what should or shouldn’t be said.  John’s blog says very little about living people. The only time John has stepped away from that rule has been with cousins who are celebrities such as Patrick Swayze, a distant seventh cousin.  So, John does not hesitate when it comes to blogging and writing, it’s always a matter of what he writes and what he shares with others.

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Please take a moment to stop by John’s blog, leave him a comment to let him know you were there. Welcome John!

© 2010, copyright Gini Webb

Gini Webb lives in San Diego, California and manages her own blog, Ginisology, while also researching her own German heritage, recently retired, enjoying life with wonderful husband Steve and visiting with her now seven grandchildren!

Are you a genealogy blogger who would like to be interviewed for the “May I Introduce To You . . .” series? If so, contact Gini Webb via e-mail.

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