Bird by Bird Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

Anne Lamott
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What does Alice Adams' ABDCE formula stand for, in writing a short story?
(a) Alice's Books Do Create Excitement.
(b) Action, Background, Characters, Drama, and Ending.
(c) Asides, Background, Drama, Characters, and Encoding.
(d) Action, Background, Development, Climax, and Ending.

2. How does Anne describe writing for herself and most other writers she knows?
(a) Elegant.
(b) Dewy and thrilled.
(c) Rapturous.
(d) Not rapturous.

3. From where did Anne's Special Olympics article start to emerge?
(a) The girl on crutches.
(b) The cool man.
(c) A Polaroid of three of the athletes.
(d) Her lunch.

4. How does plot fall together?
(a) As you listen to your characters and watch them move.
(b) As you listen to jazz music and drink wine.
(c) As you conform your characters to the plot in your outline.
(d) Piece by piece, like a puzzle.

5. What does Anne say must first happen before we can recognize others for who they are?
(a) Compassionately knowing who you are.
(b) Ask them who they think they really are, it is so telling.
(c) Visit with them for a few hours.
(d) Watch them for a year.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Anne believe allows us to see the individual person?

2. What does the title, False Starts, mean?

3. What is Anne's father's occupation?

4. What do we want out of important characters, such as a narrator?

5. What does the one-inch picture frame remind her of?

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Anne suggest doing with the feeling of paranoia?

2. According to Anne, how does knowledge of a character develop?

3. How does Anne say perfectionism affects writing?

4. What does a bad first draft provide a writer, according to Anne?

5. At some point you may need to design a set for your characters that you know nothing about. What avenues does Anne suggest taking to gain the knowledge you need?

6. In Part 2, The Writing Frame of Mind, Section 1, Looking Around, what is writing about, and how do we see the writer?

7. How does Anne state dialogue affects a reader?

8. When Anne was writing food reviews, how did allowing herself to write bad first drafts help her?

9. What was Natalie Goldberg's response when asked for the best possible writing advice she had to offer? How true is this advice?

10. How did Anne accomplish a very believable gardener in her novel, when she cannot even keep a houseplant alive?

(see the answer keys)

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