About Mary Ann Payne

Mary Ann Payne is a wordsmith who gathers ideas from people and groups and refines them into written documents. To pay the rent, she writes grant proposals, edits newsletters, and designs marketing brochures for non-profit organizations. To feed her soul, she reads voraciously and writes poetry and personal essays. She continues to receive royalties for Grant Writing DeMystified.

“Grave Matters”: Mary Ann Payne’s Writing Exercise Result

I am pleased to share long-time Writing It Real member Mary Ann Payne’s writing in response to the writing exercise I shared last week. Grave Matters by Mary Ann Payne It’s time to bury the piano. Chop it up in tiny pieces and put it in a deep hole in the backyard next to the … Continue reading

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Accepting the Personal in the Personal Essay

Accepting the Personal in the Personal Essay In this week’s “Revision Diary,” I am offering an account of how writer Mary Ann Payne and I worked from a journal entry to a finished essay.  Mary Ann told me that often when she tries to write an essay from a journal entry, she is unhappy with … Continue reading

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The House of the Seven Gambles – Revised

When I judged Mary Ann Payne’s essay submitted for Writing It Real’s first 2006 personal essay contest as our runner up, I wrote to her with comments about her ending and ideas for strengthening it.   Here is the essay she submitted followed by those comments and Mary Anne’s revision: The House of Seven Gambles By … Continue reading

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Finished Essay: “When Love is All You Have”

The only thing that distinguished this particular examining room from dozens like it was the huge wall chart of hearts in all manner of disease and disarray.  The rest of the room was familiar and predictable – high narrow table sitting cattycorner, white enamel cabinets with boxes of disposable gloves and canisters of gauze in … Continue reading

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