The Paperback Project 2021

SAY: The Stuttering Association for the Young


Looking Back – Prompts of the Past

by Michael Ventrice

Paperback Project Authors – Michael Ventrice


Dear Reader,

The book you are about to read is essentially the story of my life as a person who stutters. I hope that by the end of it, you are able to see what it is like to live in a world where a person does not take their speech for granted. Some of the context was altered for privacy reasons but is made to still give an understanding of the event.

We sometimes may get anxious whenever we’re speaking to others. Whether it’s to a boss, group of friends, spouse, etc but does that anxiety include thinking about whether or not what you’re going to say will come out correctly? Or just shot down as a whole to maybe not even join the conversation in general. What about secondary actions, ever heard of them? Whether it’s rapid eye blinking, or twitching, or hitting oneself to try and physically get the words out. These involuntary actions vary from stutterer to stutterer but can all bring the same level of embarrassment to the person.

In our quick-paced society today, everyone is bound to get interrupted from time to time and it usually happens when a person is stuck trying to think of a word and another person going to say. Try worrying about that every time you speak. “Along with while you’re trying to speak, someone
just interrupts you mid-stutter and unknowingly makes you feel like you just got ‘shot down’.” Also try waking up every day not knowing whether or not it is going to be a good day when it comes to how fluent you are.

Though I am a part of the 1% (70 Million People worldwide), I still have experienced certain things that are considered normal while growing up. I’ve had experience in learning differences, mental health challenges, along with friend groups at school, my first girlfriend, my future and the college process, etc.

To put it plain and simple. My past experiences aren’t much different from the average, everyday person, with a little bit of the extra toppings that is my stutter.

More times than I could count I have been told the phrase, “oh I stutter too”. Well yes, we all stutter when we are at a loss for words. But what about when you’re having a conversation and your vocal cords just randomly close all of a sudden? And you’re trying to rush the words out because you’re panicking due to the racing thoughts of your peers staring at you, even though you know that trying to rush the words out won’t even help in the slightest?

I decided to write this book to get my story out there. Sure some parts may be longer than others but they’re still a part of my story.

You can begin this book at any point, though I would recommend starting from the beginning so that you are able to get a better picture of everything. Some of the prompts have to do with stuttering while others are about other important events from my life. Either way it’s a part I never really talked about and see this project as a way to finally let the stories out. Also my next memoir is most likely going to be about my college experience, I’ll have to see (and wait a few years).

CLICK THE TITLE BELOW to read the paperback book!

'Looking Back'
Paperback Project Authors – Michael Ventrice

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