Blog 8: The Dodo’s Conundrum

After reading The Dodo’s Conundrum for the first time, I honestly didn’t really grasp the meaning behind it. I had a rather negative opinion towards the poem, just like any other poem I read for the first time. I went back to read it again, and then I started to get it. The theme behind this poem was unclear to me at the beginning, but an opinion started to form after reading it again. I believe that the theme of this poem has something to do with building up your own perfect world. Anyone can build up what appears to be their perfect world, but reality will always be chasing behind you. The train set that gets spoken about throughout the poem is an example of an overstatement to help explain the theme to the reader. I successfully answered the sound and sense questions for the poem, but some of the questions I wasn’t always completely sure of. I think the theme makes more sense to me now after answering the sound and sense questions, but I’m still not thrilled about the poem. Poetry still isn’t my favorite thing in the world, and this poem didn’t change my opinion in a positive or a negative way. Writing my own forms of poetry only made me dislike poetry more. I think it was easier to point out different literary devices. Writing my own poems also helped me see rhymes more clearly. Overall, I think it was easier to analyze than other poems were, but I still didn’t enjoy it.

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Blog 7: Poetry

When I first heard we were starting to work with poetry, I had the typical reaction that most people my age have. I put an annoyed look on my face. I thought I wasn’t going to get through this part of the class. At this point, I knew some poetry terms, but I didn’t know there were as many components to poetry as we learned in class. The way we “analyzed” poems in middle school wasn’t too in-depth, and I didn’t learn much. At the beginning of the poetry unit, I was mostly exposed to formalism and free verse poems. Rhyme, alliteration, and onomatopoeia are terms that I previously learned, so I put that knowledge to use to help me analyze the poems I’ve read. I was familiar with the term iambic but wasn’t as familiar with terms such as anapestic, dactylic, spondaic, and pyrrhic. I was also familiar with meters. The two poems I chose for the first assignment still showed that I didn’t like poetry that much. When I responded to the questions asking why I liked or disliked the poems I chose I couldn’t give too much detail in my explanations because I just didn’t learn much about poetry up until that point. I didn’t really understand the poems I chose, so that’s all I could say. The scansion practice wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be, and it actually made my thoughts of poetry alter a bit. I still wasn’t a fan of poetry, but it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. The sound and sense questions weren’t fun to answer. At this point, I knew that I didn’t hate reading poetry. I just disliked the work that goes along with analyzing poems. After that, we started to read “Eldorado”. “Eldorado” wasn’t too difficult to get through. I think I might enjoy poetry more if I get to choose the specific poems I’m reading, but it still wasn’t that bad. Answering the sound and sense questions for “Eldorado” was easier than when I answered those questions the first time because by this point I was familiar with it.

I really don’t think poetry itself is an issue. Reading poems isn’t as big of a deal that most people made it out to be in the beginning. I’ve come to realize that the issue with poetry is just the work that takes place when you analyze a poem.

 

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Blog 6: Finishing My Story

I chose to use “He lied. She cried. He died” for my short story. When I initially started brainstorming for my story I didn’t imagine to go into as much detail as I did. At the beginning of my writing process, I knew what I wanted to include throughout my story, but I still didn’t figure out how I wanted to piece it all together. First I decided to start thinking about the end of my story. I figured out how I wanted to reveal the fate of my main character to the reader. Once that was figured out, I worked backward from there. During my writing process, I ended up changing the way the reader finds out what happens to my main character in order to make it more emotional for other characters. Overall, my main idea for my story hasn’t changed. I just expanded the idea. Something I’m still not necessarily a fan of is how my characters speak. After getting advice from another student in my class, I think I can still make the adults in my story sound more like adults. Some things also sound a bit too repetitive. On the other hand, I like how my story is all fitting together. The conflicts presented throughout the story all go together well. I like how the reader is aware of the main conflict along with my main character, but other characters have no idea what the truth is until it’s too late. I appreciate how the end of the story is startling for other characters. At the end of the story, you can see how the conflict could’ve been avoided if the main character made a smarter decision. This helps to reveal the theme of my story.

From reading stories for class, I’ve looked at different examples of how I can reveal my characters to the reader. My setting plays a big part in how I decided to explain the purpose of my characters.

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Blog 5: Imitation

An element in the book I’m reading that I will incorporate into my story is the description of characters and their actions. I believe that the way an author describes characters plays a major role in every story. The actions made by the characters are also a big part of any story. Sometimes a reader might decide if they enjoy a book or not based on the characters. If the author can’t successful describe major parts of the story, it probably won’t make sense to those who are reading it.

In the book I’m reading, the author is very successful at getting the purpose of every character across. Even from the beginning of the book, I was able to comprehend the purpose of the main character. If a reader can understand a reader well, they may be able to predict what the characters will do next just like in my situation.

I chose to incorporate an extensive description of my characters because I believe it has the power to determine if any reader will enjoy the story or not. I will add this element throughout my story, and I’ll be sure to go into detail while introducing the characters. I will go into detail to be sure the reader understands the situation my main character will be going through. Paying attention to details such as the tone my characters talk in will also be an important part of my story development. As my short story progresses, I’ll continue to may attention to my word choice. An author’s choice of words is crucial to writing a successful story. If you fail to keep a consistent way of writing, the reader may misinterpret the point the author is trying to get across. To conclude, the description of the main characters and their actions will play a very important role in the story I’ll be writing.

 

Blog 4- Setting

Throughout the book I’m currently reading, the author’s use of the setting influences the choices made by the characters. This story utilizes multiple settings. At the beginning of the story, the author sets the scene by looking into certain events from the past. Ten years prior to the story, the main character’s best friend disappeared. This information provides suspense for the reader right from the start. After this girl goes missing, the main character, Nicolette, moves away from their home town. The author shows the reader that Nicolette is living a successful life in a completely new environment. Nicolette then received a letter from her father which requires her to return home. Nicolette had been living in an apartment 10 hours from the original location of the story. Her apartment became empty. It was filled with boxes of all her belongings. This shows how Nicolette was making a big decision to put her life on pause. One letter still managed to influence her to make a 10 hour drive back to her father. Life in her home town is nothing like at her apartment. The house is old and beat up. Nicolette’s room remained almost untouched after she left. Nicolette is on a mission to discover the truth about her friend Annaleise. The author tells this portion of the story backward from day 15 back to day 1. Nicolette’s neighborhood wasn’t like her apartment in the city. The way it’s described makes it seem like more sketchy situations are going to happen. Later on in the story, another person goes missing. Nicolette is reliving the past again. She’s in the same old town with the same people, and the same thing happens again. Being in this setting influences Nicolette’s attitude throughout the entire story. She comes off as a very stressed character. The setting then takes you back to the night of Annaleise’s disappearance. There had been a car accident when she disappeared. The details of what took place during this crash describe to the reader what actually happened that night. The description of the car crash shows why Nicolette was the one who decided to move after Annaleise’s disappearance. The car crash also explains to the reader why the letter from Nicolette’s father at the beginning of the story influenced Nicolette to finally travel back to her home town.

Blog 3- Humor

The book I am currently reading, All The Missing Girls, does not demonstrate the use of humor at all throughout the story. So far it’s been more of a sad type of story, so I don’t see where humor could be put to use. While reading this book, the audience will most likely be asking themselves questions, and they’ll try to figure out what’s going to happen next. I don’t see anything humorous about the plot because it’s more of a story that leaves you asking questions. The story begins with Nicolette’s father appearing to be in “bad shape” due to his age which means Nicolette drops everything to go help him out and potentially sell the house. None of that shows humor. The reader finds learns about Nicolette’s best friend who disappeared ten years ago. Upon Nicolette’s arrival at her father’s house, she finally got the chance to ask him what he meant when he sent a haunting letter saying, “I saw the girl”. The reader can infer that the girl Nicolette’s father is referring to is the one who has been missing. 

I believe that if the author inserted humor into the plot it wouldn’t be as interesting to read. Yes, I do enjoy reading stories that utilize humor, but I don’t necessarily think it belongs in every story. This story works without humor since it’s more serious. If there was humor added into the story, it would change the mood and the plot wouldn’t be taken seriously anymore.

If the author was going to add humor into the story, I can really only think of one situation where it could possibly fit. When the reader learns more about the characters, they’ll notice that Nicolette’s father doesn’t remember much. Nicolette left her house ten years ago around the time where her best friend Corrine went missing. Nicolette’s father sends her the letter about seeing Corinne. So I think it could be funny if when Nicolette returns to her father’s house, she notices that her father “saw the girl” because she has been living with them the whole time. 

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Blog 2: All The Missing Girls

I am currently reading the book All The Missing Girls. The main character is a woman named Nicolette. Nicolette had left her home town ten years ago after her best friend Corinne went missing. Now, she returns to her home town, leaving her life behind, to care for her father who is getting older, and she finds out more information on the disappearance of her best friend. Nicolette’s personality is revealed to the reader in multiple ways throughout the story. 

Certain parts of Nicolette’s personality are described to the reader pretty early on in the story. Nicolette made a choice to leave her apartment and her job to go help her father since he was getting older. Yes, that’s a nice thing to do, but she’s not just going for a week or two. She decided to drop everything in her life for a couple of months. She’s not only helping her father, but she’s helping her brothers deal with his finances too. This reveals an important detail about Nicolette’s personality. She’s showing that she’ll do whatever it takes to help other people out in a time of need.

Prior to Nicolette leaving her apartment, her father sent her a letter saying she needed to come back home because he thinks he saw “the girl”. Even though this girl disappeared ten years ago, Nicolette still showed her concern for her by dropping everything she had going on.

Nicolette shows the reader that she’s a very observant character. When Nicolette finally gets back to her home town, she goes straight to her room. She realizes that the pictures that used to be on her walls were no longer hanging there. One important thing she realizes is that the pictures that got taken down all had Corinne in them. 

I think that these parts of Nicolette’s personality will benefit her in the future of this story. Nicolette is going to be trying to figure out what really happened when Corinne disappeared, and I think that she truly cares about what happened to Corinne. I think Nicolette really developed a strong friendship with Corinne. If she hadn’t, there’s no way she’d travel nine hours to hear what her father had to say about her disappearance. Nicolette cares about the relationships she makes with her family and friends, and she will do anything to maintain those relationships. I believe that she has a great personality.

 

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All The Missing Girls

I recently chose to start reading All The Missing Girls by Megan Miranda. I decided to read this book after reading the summary because I found it interesting. All The Missing Girls is the story about Nicolette Farrell and how she leaves her successful life and fiance behind to drive nine hours away in order to take care of her father. Nicolette will end up driving to where her best friend had disappeared ten years prior. Now, there’s beginning to be an increase in missing people in this town. Within the span of fifteen days, Nicolette pieces together the information revealing secrets about her friends and family. She figures out the truth of what really happened to her best friend 10 years ago.  I found this summary to be very interesting, and I had to find out what events take place throughout this story. 

Although I haven’t read much of this story so far, the part that I did read is quite interesting. The story starts out with Nicolette finding out she needs to make a nine-hour drive so she can help take care of her father. As she leaves her life behind, she stared at her empty apartment. Nicolette would be gone for a while, so she had to be prepared with all of her necessities. She then left her successful life and fiance behind and starts the drive to her father. The setting goes from an apartment in Philadelphia to nine hours away in a town called Cooley Ridge. Her father is in “bad shape” and so is the house. Nicolette’s brother was then introduced into the story. He was under the impression that Nicolette was coming to help her father. That’s true, but what he doesn’t know is that Nicolette had a letter sent to her saying, “I need to talk to you. That girl. I saw that girl”. Throughout the beginning of the book, that quote was repeated which emphasizes its importance.

So far, this story really grabbed my attention and I think it’s worth reading. Certain details such as the fact that Nicolette is leaving her life for 2 months to live somewhere else seems very interesting to me because I believe there could be a lot of conflicts that can’t be solved since she’s so far away from everything. I appreciate what Nicolette is doing for her father (even though she’s also making this journey for the purpose of the letter she received), and it makes me like her character a little more. I’m ready to see how the story develops, and I’m excited to continue reading this book.

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