Word of the day -Traulism

Traulism -To stammer. Stuttering

This is a good word to describe my speech.  I get tongue twisted even when the usage is clear in my head.  My traulism is pronounced when my mouth is dry.

The pronounced traulism of my speech interferes with communication.  

To avoid traulism, lets share secrets by writing page by page with Anna Michelle Page


Boring Details…

According to Esther Chilton at https://esthernewtonblog.wordpress.com/2018/11/26/bite-size-writing-tips-7/, dialogue should be used only when providing the reader with information -the details shouldn’t bore the reader when used in moderation.

They tell us to show -not tell.  Dialogue is our best source to show our readers what is happening.  According to R. L. Stine on Master Class, he writes as much as 2/3rds of his books (Goosebumps/Fear Street) in dialogue.

So, what is the key to showing and telling through dialogue without boring our readers?

  1. When you slip action into dialogue, its breaks apart the dialogue, making it easy to follow.
  2. Showing conflict between physical and internal dialogue.
  3. Never use dialogue as a filler.  Stay focused and be a minimalist.
  4. Avoid adverbs.  I say this but many successful authors use adverbs in their writing.  If you must -make it believable. (Be warned: It will drive the reader bonkers)
  5. Reveal your characters through dialogue.  Throw in tidbits telling the reader the characters back story or, seep in secrets about their lives.
  6. Create conflict between characters.
  7. Make sure readers are learning something to push the story forward.
  8. Build surprises into dialogue.
  9. Make your voice and the voice of your characters believable.
  10. Don’t reveal too much too soon.
  11. Throw in fragmented sentences, instead of complete sentences.
  12. Don’t give the reader too much.  Let them develop their own answers.

This is what I‘ve learned through studying some of the greats: James Patterson, R. L. Stine, and tips found in Writer’s Digest.

The truth isn’t a secret.  Each writer will learn what works for them.  What keeps their writers coming back?  You will break some of these rules and find success.  As Edgar Rice Burroughs said, “If you write one story, it may be bad; If you write 100, you have the odds in your favor.”

Practice. Practice. Practice.  Then Edit. Edit. Edit.

Until we become famous Page by page with Anna Michelle Page.




DFA -Author Disease

DFA = Description Fatigue of Authors

If you spend countless hours researching descriptions for your writing, you may have DFA.

There is only one known cure for DFA -stop writing.  For most writers that isn’t a choice.  Below I’ve attempted to relieve your DFA with sites that will decrease your research and help you create better descriptions.  I hope it helps.

I found this great blog site for descriptions.  I research considerably the perfect couch, curtains, windows -you get the idea.  Most of the sites I search are vague with their descriptions.  LemonStand has prepared a delicious blog of ideal sites with perfect prose in their details.  When they wrote this blog I don’t believe they wrote it with writers in mind, but -hey, who cares.  Right?

Don’t get in the trap of plagiarism, but have fun using their descriptions to get creative juices in gear.  With these sites you’ll know the designer, era and materials.

Have fun at: https://blog.lemonstand.com/12-websites-with-fantastic-product-descriptions/

Writers Helping Writers, https://writershelpingwriters.net are another site for writers who need help with descriptions.  Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi have written several books on this matter from The Emotional Wound Thesaurus to The Negative Trait Thesaurus.  

If you struggle to write descriptions I found this cute site Kim Kautzer’s Write Shop https://writeshop.com/choosing-vocabulary-to-describe-a-place/  It teaches kids to write descriptions and gives tools for searching.  It might be elementary but I thought the site was informative.  Ms. Kautzer has co-written several workbooks: Write Shop 1 is the one I researched.  The writers designed this workbook for teens to create strong descriptions.  I may buy it.

Another great site to learn descriptive writing is Jericho Writers (formerly The Writers Workshop).  https://jerichowriters.com/sense-of-place-novel/ shares a rich wealth of knowledge on descriptive writing.

One of my “go to” blogs is https://kathysteinemann.comKathy Steinemann prepares wonderful resources on describing the perfect laugh, back, mouth, legs and on. Her most recent release is ways to describe a breath or breathing.  Cool.  I love her site.

Check out these sites and let me know if you liked them.  If you know of other sites l beneficial for authors share them.

Page by page with Anna Michelle Page


Sweet & Sour Writing…

According to Roy Peter Clark, author of Writing Tools (10th Anniversary Edition) a writer must create moving pictures in the minds of our readers.  Readers want to feel, see, and imagine they are touching the characters and scenery of books.

How many times have I recounted the line, “Show, don’t tell“ while revising?

I’ve recently picked up a couple books by Mary Kay Andrews.  Her delightful books are full of added tidbits, much the same as going to the movies and eating plain M&M’s with popcorn.  Sweet & sour.  Yum!

Ms. Andrews writes great details on the clothing her characters wear and their surroundings.  These details make me hungry as I chew through her chapters.   But, it’s the hateful/sweet additives she uses to describe people that keep me wanting more.

For instance, in Savannah Breeze she reveals a woman is pregnant with triplets.  The air between these women is full of caustic gases, but I need not tell you of their bad blood.  Listen to BeBe’s description: “Social-climbing carpetbagger.” 

Then when BeBe learns she is expecting triplets, she adds: “The Bitch is having a litter.”  Ooh, the popcorn has extra salt.

Or, consider BeBe’s white legs, as “fish belly white.”

When Grandfather sees BeBe kissing Harry, he lays a condom from around 1965 on Harry’s pillow.  That is brilliant.  What a picture.  I see Grandpa Loudermilk as a young man looking for action.  He enters the restroom and buys a condom.

Now years later, he removes the condom from his wallet and places it on the pillow of his granddaughters lover’s pillow.  What a treat for Harry, huh?

When BeBe finds out Weezie, her retro hunting friend, offers to buy the condom and sell it on eBay.

These tidbits, the popcorn and M&M candies of this book, you’ll enjoy throughout the novel, but in mere lines of recounting I’ve seen a quick preview of a movie I can’t wait to read.

In my humble opinion, Mary Kay Andrews bleeds movie into her writing.  I hope to add more popcorn and M&M’s into my writing but can I capture sentences, rich in description, as Ms. Andrews?  Maybe.  Until then, I’ll see you at the movies.

Page by page with Anna Michelle Page

Build a Page of Jam…

Word of the Day: Alterocentric – A person who places their primary focus on others.

According to Lisa Cron at Writers Helping Writers, the author should make the protagonist bleed.  The way to carry out this with interest attached is to enter the characters mind and keep your writing focused and deep.

We need to be alterocentric for the length of our characters development.

Malcolm Gladwell says he writes about people as they see themselves.  Judy Blume tells us to find our inner child and James Patterson says to build a puzzle.  In other words, we must know our protagonists, both their internal thoughts and how they present themselves, to make them bleed.

Before I write a scene, I play it out in my head as if watching a movie.  If excitement, pain or anger doesn’t build in my mind’s eye I restart the vision.  After all, it’s not my story.  It’s theirs.  I search for their truth by building a background, or a puzzle.  I become the people I create and write about them the way they see their selves.  Puzzling?  He he he.

It isn’t that we can walk into their homes and write a constructed profile.  We are the decorator and the proprietor.  It is our job to know their likes, dislikes, truths and secrets.  Then spread them across the pages with jam.

Each characters truth must cover the page with their own flavor.  Some are sweet like strawberry jam while others leave an aftertaste, like marmalade.  Then we serve up our new concoction and place it in the readers hands.  If we’ve been true to our alterocentric self, the reader will devour our dish.

Bon appétit.

To learn about your bleeding protagonists read Lisa Cron’s article, There Will Be Blood, at: https://writershelpingwriters.net/2018/07/there-will-be-blood/

Page by page with Anna Michelle Page


The Influencers…

Angela Ackerman wrote a great article: How to Find and Reach Influencers and Help Promote Your Book.  You can find it: https://www.janefriedman.com/how-authors-can-find-readers/

“Let the world burn through you. Throw the prism light, white hot, on paper.” Ray Bradbury, WD

Malcolm Gladwell tells his audience on MasterClass we need to connect.  We need to connect with our readers, but he says we should connect for research.

Yes, he is a journalist and best-selling non-fiction author, however his point is clear whether you write fiction or non-fiction; article or novel; poem or prose -we must connect for success.

I spend more time conducting research than I write.  I dig for the goodies that will inspire original content and enhance my stories.  But this lesson urged me to dig deeper.  The library is one source but consider research influencers. Mr. Gladwell shares his insight to research influencers on MasterClass.  Sorry, you must plug-in and take his class to seize this goodie.

Lots of authors and bloggers do podcasts, blogs and write books to help us become better writers via language, grammar, and editing -but our research brings the story alive, making the story “white hot” -as Ray Bradbury says.

Every writer tries to tell a great story in their genre by creating scenes that thrill, excite or scare.  Do we go far enough?  How much farther can we go through research influencers?  I endeavor to find out so the world’s I create will burn through me.

Page by page with Anna Michelle Page

Confident? Optimistic? Or, Determined?

Word of the Day: Panglossian – Being blindly or naively optimistic

I’m not panglossian, but I am optimistically willing to write and expose myself to your critique, whether for the good or bad.  Nor, should I call myself confident, however I pat myself on the back for a job well-done, even if the standards I’m complementing haven’t proven fruitful.

I suppose I am fearless, even as I fear most everything.  Somehow along my life path I pushed through my fears and believed in me.  The road is bumpy with potholes deep enough to throw your car’s front-end alignment out of balance.

Everyone begins somewhere.  My beginning, the start of Anna Michelle Page‘s writing career, starts now. As you, I dream of acceptance.

My veterinarian once told me he is a practicing vet -everyday he comes to work and practices hoping to do the job right.  I’m a writer.  Being a writer doesn’t automatically turn me into the next F. Scott Fitzgerald or J. K. Rowling, but it entitles me to strike my keyboard and produce sentences for the approval or rejection of any reader that takes a notion to read my work.

I’m not alone.  Every writer creates dreaming someone will read them with appreciation.  This dream drives me to write, to vulnerability, to optimistic fearlessness and confidence to achieve my goals.

I am confident.  I am optimistic.  I am determined.  I am a writer.

Page by page with Anna Michelle Page

If you struggle with a lack of optimism read: https://writersinthestorm.wordpress.com/2013/07/22/10-writer-affirmations-to-bolster-optimism/  Kathryn Craft has post a brilliant boost of writer affirmations for the writer who lacks optimism.