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Let's turn your favorite memories into family heirlooms
                 

 

Author Rick Kamen specializes in 
Heirloom Stories

Rick writes Heirloom Stories the way they're told: short, personal, and ending with a twist, usually a laugh.

Let Rick turn your life stories into Heirloom Stories. Your descendants will enjoy them for centuries.

Read more about Heirloom Stories here
Read sample stories here or here.
Read a book-in-progress here.
Contact Rick here.

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Distribution

The best way to distribute your stories is to make sure your descendants have written copies, and they keep them in a special file. There are lots of other ways to distribute your stories:

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Make sure your friends and family have the address of the web page I maintain for you. It always has the most up-to-date version of your book. Whenever we complete a story, you can remind them to visit your page.

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You can send the new story to friends and family members by e-mail.

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You can send the new story to friends and family members by fax.

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You can send the new story to friends and family members by postal mail.

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I can set up a "New Story Newsletter" for your web page. If your friends and family members sign up for it, they'll get copies of your latest stories e-mailed to them within hours of completion.

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I can fax or postal mail copies of your stories to people you specify for a fee. Ask me about it if you're interested.

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When we're sure you're through telling stories, we can publish them in book form. From your descendants perspective, the best binding is one they can take apart and photocopy the separate sheets of paper. You can get that type of book made at any copy shop.

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I can also put your stories into the type of book you could buy at a bookstore - with a professionally designed cover and interior, back cover text, foreword, acknowledgements, ISBN, etc. 

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We can talk more about the options and costs when we're at that point.

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Ask for a free
Elderhood button with
your first story.

 

Writing Heirloom Stories

Writing Heirloom Stories with me is easy and fun. It's like talking to a friend about the old days.

Shortly after I call, I'll trigger one of your oldest and most interesting memories. You can tell me about it at your normal speaking speed.

It's not difficult to ignore the computer keys clattering in the background. I'll be typing notes and quotes to string together into stories during the next few days.

Often, one interview provides enough material for several stories, but I'll only work on one at a time. After writing a story, I'll let it sit for a day or two as I tweak and polish it to perfection.

There's a lot of work to the writing process that you'll avoid. From your perspective, we'll just talk about the old days over the phone and I'll send you a professionally-written story about it a few days later.

I prefer sending you the story by e-mail. Fax is my second choice. If you don't have either, I can print out your story and send it to you through the postal mail, but that will slow us down a lot.

When you get the completed story, it's not finished. You'll tell me if you want any changes. Then I'll send you the revised story.

Don't worry about ruining my perfect story. It's your story. I want to deliver your thoughts and words to your descendants your way.

People often repeat things others tell them. If I know or discover something that relates to your story, I may include it. Once you read it, you may decide to keep it as part of your story. That makes it yours. If you don't want the added material, I'll remove it.

When you're happy with the story - and not before - I'll charge you for it. The simplest way is for me to charge your credit card. You won't have to receive a bill or write a check.

I'll charge $95.01 for the first story, $95.02 for the second, etc. That way, you'll know exactly what a charge from Heirloom Stories™ is for, and you'll be sure you're not getting billed twice for the same story.

Heirloom Stories are normally between 200 and 800 words in length. Sometimes, they can go over 1000, or even 1500 words. I call those "double-length", or "triple-length" stories and charge slightly more for them. ($145 and $195).

If you want all your stories to be $95 ones, let me know before we start writing. If a story ends up being over 1000 words, I'll split it in two before presenting it to you.

After charging your card, I'll add your new story to the web page I maintain for you. It will look like this.

You can always count the number of stories on that page to confirm how many stories we've written and what the last story's charge should be.

Your friends and family members can go to that page whenever they want to read your entire book-in-progress. We should never feel any pressure to publish your stories in book form until we're sure you've told all the stories you want included.

So, from your perspective, writing Heirloom Stories is just talking about the old days on the telephone with someone who's great at triggering stories and loves listening to them.

When you get your written story, you'll tell me if you want anything changed. When we arrive at a version you like, I'll say something like, "this is our 8th story, so I'll charge your card $95.08 and add this story to your website." I won't send you bills; you don't have to send me checks.

Then I can send you your next story. I often have it ready to go.

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Rights

When you pay for a story, you'll receive a copy of it with written rights printed at the bottom of the page. They allow you and your descendants to make unlimited copies for distribution to friends and family.

I retain the other rights because I may use the stories in other places, like articles, books, and on this website.

If you need more rights to your stories, let me know at the time of writing and we'll make other arrangements. My rates are very reasonable at $1 per word rather than $95 per story. Click here for a 2001 price comparison.

If you haven't realized it yet, $95 per story is an incredible bargain.

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Stories about living people

Even though it may be legal to tell true stories about living people, they may be offended or feel violated.

Before I give rights to distribute a story, no matter how complimentary, about a living person other than you, I'll need a signed release from that person.

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Last story deposit

Before starting to work on your first story, I'll require a $95 payment for your last story.

I'm sorry to have to require this, but it protects me from people who want me to work for them, but have no intention of ever paying for a story.

If I can't revise your first story so that you like it, I'll refund your deposit and we won't attempt a second story. Most likely, this deposit will pay for the last story I write for you.

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Let's get started

We can start your stories tomorrow if you contact me today.

You can contact me with this form, or call me at (858) 273-1111 to set up your first telephone interview appointment.

Thanks for reading about Heirloom Stories. I'm looking forward to writing yours.

Sincerely,

Rick Kamen 
the Harnessmaker's Grandson
Owner of Heirloom Stories®

 

 

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Revised: October 04, 2011