Publish your family history

Provides advice and resources for publishing your family history.

Subject librarian

Ann Copeland's picture
Ann Copeland
Librarian, Family History Team
State Library Victoria

Contact me via our online reference service citing my name and the title of this guide.

Family history guides

First steps

You’ve done all the hard work researching your family history. Now, you’d like to turn it into a publication. That’s why we’ve put together some guidelines to help you do this.

Before writing your family history you’ll need to think about its structure and the content you’d like to include. You’ll also need to consider whether there are any copyright or privacy implications. Once you have completed writing and structuring your family history, you will move into the publishing phase.

Before publishing a book, we recommend that you acquire an International Standard Book Number (ISBN). You also have the opportunity to obtain a Cataloguing-in-Publication (CIP) entry.

After publishing, you are responsible for legal deposit (making a copy of your family history available in relevant Australian libraries) and also have the opportunity to enter family history awards.

You may also publish your family history online on the internet as a website or through a new hobby called digital scrapbooking.

Self publishing

You may pay a publisher or printer to produce your family history, depending upon your budget and the number of copies you need. A publisher can help with editing and design as well as printing while a printer will simply print and bind your family history, as provided.

It is recommended that you get at least 3 quotes before deciding who will produce your family history. It is helpful to look at other published family histories at a local library or genealogy group to see what kind of style you like. You can also find publishers and printers in the Yellow Pages.

Further information about self publishing is available in the Publishing resources box or you can find books about self publishing in the Library's collections.

Publishing resources

State Library Victoria


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