Writing Your Own Obituary

29 November 2019 • Online Obituaries

Writing your own obituary might sound odd, but it's actually a practice that is becoming more popular. Writing your own obituary's draft will give you more control over how your legacy is presented after you pass away. You can then specify in a will to have it released to the person who will be in charge of your online obituary.

This will ease the burden of the person in charge of maintaining your online obituary, because they will already have content to work with. In many cases, having an obituary published in a local newspaper will be decided by an editor, and written by a reporter who specializes in obituaries. Writing your own online obituary will give you more freedom in how it is written. 

Don't know where to start? We got you covered. We'll go over the different sections and elements that go into a simple obituary. Once you're ready, open up a new page in your favorite word processor or on Google Docs, and we'll get started. 

The Basics

Write down your basic information. This will serve as the backbone of your obituary and is the standard set of details included in both newpaper and online obituaries. Some of the basic details include:

  • Complete name
  • Date and place of birth
  • Place of residence
  • Spouse or partner information 

Double-check dates and places. Make sure that spelling is correct. Your will executor, or whoever will be in charge of your legacy planning in the future, will include death and place of death, as well as your age at passing.

You can also add a bit of character to your online obituary draft with some personal details, such as:

  • Nicknames
  • Names of children and grandchildren
  • Personality traits
  • Hobbies and achievements of note

Skymorials Online Obituary

The Brief Biography

Your life is unique and you have a story to tell. Provide a brief biography about your life thus far including:

  • Major life events
  • Contributions and causes
  • Profession or trade
  • Close friends and colleagues
  • Funny habits or quirks
  • Short memorable anecdotes
  • Your favorite quotes

This is the section of your obituary where you get to really show your true colors to loved ones. Remember, these words will be an immortal part of your legacy after you pass away, so choose your language wisely. The same can be said about what you choose to reveal.

Think of this obituary draft as a final statement. This is why writing your own obituary gives us a liberating feeling. It's not just about controlling your legacy, but the opportunity to have a last word, using our own words. Not many people get to do that because they never thought of it, or thought it would be too weird or depressing to write their own online obituary. 

Even if in the end you decide not to publish your obituary's draft in the future, at the very least it was an exercise in memento mori, or reminder of our mortality. It will also help you become more aware of the challenges your loved ones will face after you pass away, and the importance of planning for it. 

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