(Photo credit: Moments by Andrea Photography)
One of the most meaningful things families have aren’t physical or material possessions–what’s most important are the stories, often about family lore or history, the ones that root us in who we are.
Being able to make sure those stories are recorded for perpetuity is something many people wish they do, but often don’t take the time to do so.
Beginning in 2014, Karen Sackowitz Communications, a locally owned writing services firm based in Wilton, will offer new specialized packages for individuals and companies seeking to preserve treasured stories for future generations. Seanchai: Personal and Corporate Narratives will offer clients the opportunity to turn today’s tales and memories into stories, legends and keepsakes to carry into the future.
“Every family has a story. We all have loved ones we want our children to remember, family memories we want to live on. It’s an incredible gift. Things our children and our children’s children will inherit someday. People put photo albums together, how great would it be to have written stories and memories–of a particular person, of a family gathering or reunion, of a special event,” Sackowitz said.
Developed through research, interviews, and careful collaboration to reach the best level of authenticity, the story packages will leave each client with something truly unique and specialized which they can hold onto forever.
“I love meeting new people, talking with them to find out their stories. It’s the part of journalism that I love,” Sackwitz said. “Whether it’s helping to tell a chapter, a tradition, or a special story you want to have captured. Everyone has a special story they want captured.”
Sackowitz is also working with Wilton photographer Peggy Garbus for when clients want to mix in photography as part of capturing the personal histories.
“It might be an older family member who wants to record their upbringing to share it with future generations. Or it could be a family seeking to capture a special location or tradition with words and images. In the corporate world, a company may want to share its history to show the foundation of their success,” says Sackowitz. “Whatever the goal, we will work with each client to create exactly what they need. We can incorporate photos, go on site to special locales, create books or digital records – however they’d like that story preserved, we will make it happen.”
In choosing a name for the new service, Sackowitz gave a nod to her own family history, as well as her passion for hearing and sharing stories, and the work she has done as a freelance journalist over the last decade.
“Seanchai is a gaelic word referring to a traditional Irish storyteller-historian,” she says, pronouncing the word shawn-a-key. “When I was developing the idea for these narratives, the word immediately struck a chord with me as a passionate storyteller and a second generation Irish American.”
It’s all about the method.
“It goes back to a traditional way of telling stories. It’s the way old storytellers would pass on the stories to younger generations, and sometimes they were never written down. It’s easy to bullet point a history–this happened, this happened, this happened. But when you talk to someone and get the stories that are in between, capturing great anecdotes and moments, there’s such a difference,” Sackowitz said.
Each narrative package is individualized to fit a client’s needs. Options which can be added on to the narrative package include a half day photo shoot, travel to a specific locale, and the choice of a hard cover or digital copy of the finished product.
Sackowitz says the narratives are unique items for families that are hoping to capture an intangible so that their special moments and memories can live on. “It may be a once-in-a-lifetime gift for someone, for retirement, for a big birthday, for a wedding or family reunion. But I also want to offer some discounted packages for families facing special circumstances.”
Seanchai: Personal and Corporate Narratives services will add onto Karen Sackowitz Communications’ current list of specialties, which include marketing writing services for businesses and healthcare entities, as well as editorial pieces for major newspapers and regional magazines. Karen Sackowitz is a member of the New England Society for Healthcare Communications and the Association of Personal Historians.
To get in touch Sackowitz about customizing a personal history narrative, contact her through her website at www.karensackowitz.com.