So i’ve finished posting up my analysis of the men and women from Portsmouth who died during the Second World War. And over previous months I have posted up thousands of stories, of medal winners, brothers, special forces, senior officers, men involved in famous battles, and other historical points of interest.
But… what next?
Having spent about 9 months researching these 2,000+ names, I’m inspired even more by their stories, their experiences and their sacrifices. And there are so many stories to tell – even the ones that are, on the surface, unglamorous – they are still stories of a life lost, a family bereaved. I think they deserve to be told, and compiled properly so people can access them, and find out about their ancestors, or even add information where I may have dropped off! And not only that, but it gives a unique insight into life and society in wartime Portsmouth.
I’m thinking along a couple of lines…
1) Writing up a selection of interesting stories, based on the blog posts that I have made, about medal winners, commanders, interesting stories, and in broader terms about specific battles. The idea would be to pick a handful of men and women, whose stories would represent their peers.
2) A full reference book containing all of the names, along with their details from my database. I’m not sure if this has been done elsewhere, but its an interesting concept and would be like the National roll of WW1, but more detailed. Maybe its even something that could be rolled out to other cities too?
3) An online, searchable database, that could contain photographs, links, references, etc… almost like a wiki
All of these ideas are very much at the thinking stage, and all depend on time, funds, feasability, and not to mention whether any publishers would take on the book ideas, and if my technical skills can reach to web design!
But I would be very interested to know what you guys, my readers, think – especially those of you who know much more about writing, publishing, web design etc than I do!