Category Archives: rules

A Rose by Any Other Name?

Alas. Alack.

I have failed miserably in selecting a pen name. That is, I’m using my real name as my author name.

I just read an article that says your first name should have two syllables and your last name, one. Like Stephen King. And here I am with a one-syllable first name and a verboten three-syllable last-name. What to do?

Shall I henceforth become Anna Whit? I think not.

I do think saint names are cool. I once contemplated Anna Saint Whitaker.

My writer friend Cara Marsi’s maiden name was Palmarella, but she chose not to use it because she said it was too easy to misspell and mispronounce. I think she made a big mistake to ditch such a beautiful Italian name. It has character and flow, unlike the Germanic sound of “Whitaker.”

Anna Saint Whitakerella just doesn’t have the quite the same ring to it.

Anna La Whitakerella? Nay, again.

How about my maiden name “Howard”? Also Germanic.

Below are a couple of name generator sites I’ve been playing around with.

Following the two-syllable/one-syllable rule I came up with “Kimi Kind” and “Zoucka Stale,” which have a nice ring to them. Or maybe my favorite author and the street I grew up on—“Bronte Sammons.”

 On second thought, I’ll stick with my real name for now.


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Filed under authors, Cara Marsi, ideas, pen names, rules

Blogging Rules

Ann’s Rules of the Blog

As a former English teacher, I thought it appropriate to begin my first blog with some rules. Now pay attention.

Rule #1:

· Blogs should be readable to a normal young person over 40. Please, no fancy fonts like Old English or Windings. Also, use a LARGE font—not everyone can afford laser eye surgery, and reading glasses are never where you left them.

· Absolutely no dark backgrounds with yellow or pink type. Because I said so. I know it looks all cool and atmospheric and represents your writing personality, but if people can’t read it, they’ll never know how cool you really are. Many a time, I’ve had to move on to a less cool person whose text I could read.

· Please limit the use of flashing thingys and falling stars. They’re either so mesmerizing I fall asleep or so irritating they make my head bobble.

Rule #2: Keep your blog short and to the point. This is probably the first rule I’ll break, as I have a tendency to digress and ramble on about whatever enters my mind the moment my fingers touch the keyboard. My own personal stream-of-semi-consciousness. I call it “AnnWorld.”

In the early days of computers, I read an article about how word processing programs wouldn’t mean better writing, they’d just make it easier for those who tend to be loquacious to loquate even more. I think I’ve proven that point on many occasions. And, yes, I know “loquate” isn’t a word, but if Shakespeare could make up words, so can I.

Rule #3: NO BUI. Blog naked if you like, or blog in your jammies, but blog sober. This isn’t so much a rule as advice. If you do get inspired after hefting a few, look it over the next morning to be sure you really want to say that about your ______________ (fill in the blank).

Rule #4: Proofread your blog, especially if you’re a writer blogging about writing. Be sure you didn’t any words out. The eye often sees what it thinks is there. Yes, that sentence was one of those tricks teachers sometimes throw in to see if you’re really paying attention.

Rule #5: To be announced. I’m sure once I get into the world of blogging I’ll come up with more rules. Until then, I hope I’ve helped not only the bloggers of the world but also the multitudes of blogees trying to figure out what the blog you’re trying to say.


Filed under blog, blogging, rules, Texas