Inventory the key "Artifacts" of your life.

In this Start, you begin by taking a simple inventory of some of the key "Artifacts" of your life.

It could be your passport, your watch – or a hundred things that populate & punctuate your life. Not just photos and movies . . . but other things you've saved – that might help tell your story.

Whether you prefer a handwritten list or a computer-assisted list – you'll be making some lists. We recommend you start with a list of LISTS . . . as you'll probably want to do several separate inventories, which may include (but not be limited to) Photos, Slides, Movies, Recordings, Music, Documents, Personal Memorabilia, Awards, Collections . . . and more.

"Stories" should be on your list, too, but keep in mind that identifying "stories" is your objective. So many times, your identification of stories will happen like clockwork – not when you "list" – but more  when you actually gather the goods on your inventory lists.

We've all "collected" these things all throughout our lives . . . stashed usually EVERYwhere . . . as thinking "one day" we'll bring them together (in one place) and actually organize them into a more cohesive whole . . . to help tell the stories we may be about to tell. And this may be your day!

Our guess is that early on  . . . somebody was making memories for YOU . . . and you may have kept photographic (and other) evidence, too. Think of your Artifact Inventory as . . . 

the "Best of the Best"

. . . of what you want to capture and save to represent your life, or the associated stories that may be the "Chapters" of your life. See below.

Again, it may be best not to worry (too much) about further "organization" – at this point – as you may find that a single story may call upon SEVERAL artifacts (possibly from several sources and categories). While a single slide or a single artifact, or piece of music may tell another story, all on its own. You'll find that (just as they always say) . . . one thing will easily lead to another.

When your artifacts start suggesting stories you want to tell immediately . . . you're launched!

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You're welcome to the Checklist . . . which is really a LIST of lists . . . from which you'll most likely pick just one – or maybe two. Each will be EXPANDED . . . as these lists are just a starting point.

Now cross formats . . . and apply "Inventory" disciplines to the "Chapter" style you choose . . . and do a starting inventory of the photos, images, and artifacts you'll use to tell your story.

Here's another LIST . . . a simple list of all your "Life Locales" – in order. You may find the linear, "Life Locales" approach to be among the easiest to develop.

The idea here is to apply "Inventory" thinking to your Life Locales . . . and do a starting inventory of the photos, images – and STORIES – that are associated with each locale. 

This is a tease for the "Lifebook" Start (next in line), as one of the first files aboard the disk is a highly pre-formatted Excel file – that expands your locales to the right – by YEAR – (see below) – 

Where capturing a life in "Snapshot" form has this huge advantage: By charting the years of LONGEVITY in each locale, you can more INSTANTLY see the locales that have represented the real preponderances – and locale-based commitments of your life.

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