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Friday, April 22, 2011

My thoughts on the book to kill a mockingbird

Throughout my reading of the book 'To Kill a Mockingbird', I have encountered many things; most of which have to do with how the main characters start to grow up and how they leave their childhood. But I have also noticed that as time passes by, Scout, the main character, starts to go through hard times as she is forced to see her naive ways and her view of the world changes for good. One of the views that I speak of is her constant mistake of stereotyping.
    We find in the earlier chapters of the book that Scout has a tendency to judge people before she really knows them. An example of her stereotyping was found in the first chapter when Jem and Scout where explaining to their friend, Dill, the things they had heard about Boo, (Arthur Radley) "Jem received most of his information from Miss Stephanie Crawford, a neighborhood scold, who said she knew the whole thing. According to Miss Stephanie, Boo was sitting in the livingroom cutting some items from The Maycomb Tribune to paste in his scrapbook. His father entered the room. As Mr. Radley passed by, Boo drove the scissors into his parent’s leg, pulled them out, wiped them on his pants, and resumed his activities."  This tells us that Scout and her brother Jem do not always think about what is really the truth because of all the things they had heard from someone else. So they judged Boo without even knowing him.
     In the last few chapters, Scout encounters trials in her life and learns many lessons about stereotyping and how it is best to avoid such things. As her views on people begin to change, Scout realizes that half the things she thought about those people were not true, thus she comes to understanding how child like and wrong she had been. An example of Scout realizing how wrong her judgments are was when Scout met Walter Cunningham. At first she thought he was just someone who could not keep himself clean or pass the first grade, but she soon comes to terms that he really is not like that at all, he is a good boy and very polite to other people.
    'To Kill a Mockingbird', is more than just a story, it teaches you how things are in life and that we should not judge those things without knowing the real story behind them; I think that out of all the books I have read, this book would have to be my favorite for that very reason.


Sunday, April 17, 2011

The First Chapter Of My Book

This is the first chapter of my book. Some of you have already read it, but I have changed a lot since then, so please read it!

Chapter one
The forgotten picture
The first days of school are always the worst days of the year. Well, at least in Ann’s mind they were. But this one particular year of high school was about to become horrifyingly worst then all her first days of school combined.
Annabelle Wickerson was thirteen years old; she had long raven black hair, dark red lips, tan skin, and long finger nails, and she had just started eleventh grade at Jefferson high school in Atlanta Georgia. Ann had skipped three grades just in the last year, which she thought to be one of her most distasteful achievements yet. She hated that fact that her intellect was far more advanced than the average eighth grade; which was where all her friends would be for the next year. But her mother insisted that if mind was ready for the eleventh grade, she should be there. But Ann hated high school, All the kids called her names like nerd, pip squeak, shrimp, know- it- all, and she had also come home more than once with black eyes and bruises. Of course Ann knew that she was only made fun of so much because everyone else was just jealous, (At least that was what her mother had told her) but it still hurt her to have to listen to all the older teenagers taunting her every day.
Ann was always relived when school got out. As soon as the bell rang, signaling the end of school, Ann would gather her things and run home before any of the juvenile delinquents would catch up with her and gave her the latest news on how to give someone a swirly. But today, however, she was late in getting home because her English Teacher, Miss Draper, had called her back to talk to her about how well she did on her test.
“You did absolutely splendid!” said Miss Draper, who was a short, but very pretty women in her thirties.
“Thank you,” said Ann, glancing at the class room door, “But I really must get go-”
“You know, Ann,” Miss Draper interrupter, “You do so well in my class and I hear from your creative writing teacher that you really have a talent for writing. So I’ve been talking to the principal and going over all the homework you’ve turned in and we all seem to be convinced that you should represent our school in this year’s annual writing contested. I was given the honors of presenting the good news to you. So, what do you say, Ann would you like to do it?”
“But, Miss Draper,” said Ann, “I thought that the rules said the school can only pick a twelfth grader to represent the school, or am I wrong?”
Miss Draper smiled as if she had been expecting Ann to bring forth the problem. “Oh yes,” she said, “this conflict was brought up as we discussed whether we should enter you or not. The only answer we came up with was to move you up to twelfth grade. How does that sound to you?”
Ann’s eyes widened as Miss Draper spoke. “What!” exclaimed Ann, “move me up a grade? No!”
Miss Draper’s smile faded from her face. “What’s wrong?” she asked “I thought you would consider this as good news.”
As soon as Ann saw the disappointment in Miss Draper’s eyes she felt sorry for the way she had reacted. “I’m sorry, Miss Draper, it’s just that… I… I can’t skip another grade. You see I’ve all ready skipped three grades last summer and if I skip any more I think I just… I just might crack! You no know what mean?”
Disappointment was no longer only showing in Miss Draper’s eyes, it was now flooding all the way down her face. “Oh, I see,” she sighed “well I can’t force you to do anything. I guess I’ll just have to tell the principal we’ll have to get someone else to enter the contest.”
Ann looked toward the class room door. “I’m really sorry, Miss Draper, but I must go now.”
“Go on.” Miss Draper said as she motioning Ann toward the door.
When Ann left the class room she walked around the corner, leaned against the wall and slowly began to slide to the ground. Once she hit the ground she put her face into her hands and began to let a few tears fall from her eyes.
She had no idea what she was doing anymore. It seemed that her life was just so simple, she had more than excellent grades, she was only thirteen and getting ready to graduate within a few years, and she was already receiving scholarships from many of the best schools in the country like Yale and Harvard for a full academic education.
Yes, Ann’s life seemed like a piece of cake. But at this point in her life she was starting to wonder if all this was really what she not only what was expected of her. She wanted to know if this was really the life she wanted.
Sometimes Ann felt like she could do something different, sometimes she felt like she was meant to do something more. But one thing she was sure of was that she was trapped between knowing what everyone else wanted of her, and what she wanted of her.
Through all her confusion she nearly forgot that she was supposed to be getting home before the juvenile delinquents found her. So she got up to her feet, wiped away the few tears she had on her face, and hurried to her locker to retrieve the rest of her things.
   As Ann was walking home from school she heard a voice call out from behind her.
“Hey, look guys; it’s the Einstein Jr. Walking home.”
Ann didn’t need to turn around to know who was calling her, but just to be aware if they were coming up behind her, she turned around to face a large group of juvenile delinquents walking toward her.
The group was made of about seven high school joiners, three of which were very large and strong. Their leader, Bones, as she liked to be called, was worst of them all and had been tormenting Ann since she started coming to Jefferson High.
Bones was a very large girl, with beefy arms, and walked more like a man then she did a sixteen year old girl. She wore a lot of makeup and had chains dangling from her pockets. She had choppy brown hair that hung above her shoulders and had chocolate colored skin. She usually wore a big, black, leather jacket, and worn out jeans. Today, she was trying out a new style of bone and skull earrings with a gold necklace that had Bones engraved in the charm.
When the gang had reached Ann, Bones circled her, testing to see she would break down under pressure.
“Well, if it isn’t little miss smarty pants. How’s things going, I haven’t see ya for a while since ya stopped walking home late.” Bones said as she fingered the straps on Ann’s backpack.
“What do you want, bones?” Ann said, trying to sound a little more pleasant than she felt, but failed horribly.
“What do ya think I want,” She snapped her fingers and one of the boys in the group came shuffling forward with her text books. The boy was very small, which send a message to Ann’s brain that said he was her new pack mule for the week, Bones always got a new one every two weeks or so.
Once he reached her, Bones snatched her chemistry book from the bottom of the pile. When she did so, the boy lost his balance from all of the heavy books being moved out of position, and he dropped all of her books.
Looking at the mess he made, Bones thudded him in the back of the head making him lose his balance even more.
“Look what ya did, ya made a mess!” She barked at him, “Well, don’t just sit there pick em’ up!”
The boy, then went straight to work at re-stacking the pile of books, While Bones shook her head, “Such a rookie, kid’s been with us for a week now, and he’s still knockin’ around like he ain’t doin’ anything important!”
After she gave one last stern look at the boy she turn back to Ann, “Any way, Nerd, you’re gonna do my chemistry project for next week,consider it an honor!” She through the book into Ann’s hands and then added, “and make it good, if I don’t pass this course my old man’s gonna freak if he has to go to another counseling with school councilor, ya know what I’m sayin?”
Personally, Ann did not know what she was really saying because her grammar was completely unstable and she didn’t understand why Bones was even trying, she knew Ann wasn’t going to do her homework.
“Forget it; I’m not doing anything for you. Just because you can get a couple kid’s to do what you want doesn’t mean the rest of us have to be your personal slaves!” Ann pushed the book back into Bone’s hands and folded her arms. She wasn’t scared of Bones; she may have been a juvenile delinquent and beat people up badly, but murder was not something she was not capable of.
Bones Licked her dry lips and looked back to the rest of her crew, and laughed. As soon as she laughed everyone else laughed with her, and when she stopped laughed they stopped as well.
“Looks like we’re still havin’ a bit’ O trouble with this one, aren't we?” Bones looked Ann in the eye for a moment, then she balled up her fist and sent in straight into Ann’s stomach.
Ann yelped when Bones’ fist made contact with her. She leaned forward, as Bones came down to her with her fist still next to her stomach.
As she spoke, Bones brought her voice down to a whisper, “I can do worse, Ya know? I can make this really painful for ya, or we can do it a little easier and just have Ya do what I say. What da’ Ya think?”
Ann could not deny that the blow to her stomach had hurt, but she was not about to give in to Bones, letting her cheat, Lie, and get her way was not something Ann could live with. so Ann said one of the most regretful words anyone at Jackson High School could have ever dreamed of saying.
“I would rather die in an engulfing pit of flames!” The words had come out of her mouth before she could stop them, she later hated herself for doing so. A simple ‘No’ would have been more than suffice. But Ann’s pride and knowledge of words had gotten the better of her again.
Bones lifted on eye brow in surprise, but she soon put it back down and said, “Fine, I’m flexible. I don’t have a pit of flames anywhere near by, but maybe we can find somethin’ better for Ya!”
Bones looked back at her group and yelled, “Ty, Lisa, do your thing!”
One boy with a leather jacket and black clothes and hair step forward, alone side a big girl with similar style. Once they got to Ann, Ty slammed one of his fists into his other hand. With that motion, Ann did not question what they were planning to do to her.Before Lisa had a chance to even swing her fist, Bones held up her hand and everyone looked at her.
“Ya’ Know, Nerd, Ya still have a chance to make up for what Ya said. All Ya have to do is take my book and bring me back at least a B’s worth assignment.” Bones said holding out the chemistry book to Ann, again.
Ann shook her head, “I gave you my answer the first time!”
Bones sighed, “Well, if that’s the way Ya wanna go, then I should warn Ya that this ain't gonna feel too good!” She then snapped her fingers, and Lisa and Ty started to ball up their fists again.
“Do your worst,” Ann said in a small whisper as she pulled her hands in front of her face, protectively.
At that moment the pain began; fists punched into her sides and legs, and occasionally they would hit her in the eye. The pain was agonizing, but Ann tried to hold everything in as best she could, she did not want to give Bones satisfaction with her screaming. By the time Bones snapped her fingers to signify that she thought that was enough, Ann was on the ground and feeling pain shot up on every inch of her body.
“Let this be a lesson to Ya!” Bones yelled at Ann as she waved to the rest of her crew to follow her, and walked away.
Ann stayed on the ground, till she could no longer hear Bones laughter. Once she was for sure that no one was there, Ann rolled over on her side and began to grown; tear even started to weld up in her eyes, but she pushed them back, not wanted to give in. She did not want to let any tears come out because it signified her withdrawal from the battle, the endless battle that Ann would never give up in. She did not want to show any weakness, or she would feel weak, and Ann would never be able to fight again if she felt that she was too weak. Ann made a packed to herself right there and then, that for as log as she live, and as long as the battles kept coming, she would never give up; even if she was down to her last ounce of strength, she would never give up. Never.
Ann opened the front door to the house and stepped inside, Her whole body still hurting from the previous beating she had just received. She walked into the house slowly, trying not to hurt herself any more by using her muscles too much.
She knew that her mother was probably home by now, so not wanting to put any more stress upon her mother’s shoulders, she decided not to tell her about her encounter with the Juvenile delinquents.
With her mind make up, Ann headed straight toward the bathroom; once there she locked the door behind her. She then looked in the mirror to find that her left eye was lightly bruised; it would be easy to hide it for now, but Ann knew that in a few days time that little bruise would become a very ugly, black, bruise; When that did come Ann would have to go to further measures to hide it from her mother.
Ann pulled open the nearest drawer to her right, were her mother kept the make up. She then look around inside it till she found the foundation and face powder. Ann did not use make up at all, but she had seen her mother apply it to her own face enough times to know how it was done. first she rubbed the foundation into her skin to cover up any flaws on her skin, (or in her case, bruises), then she patted the powder over it to make her face look more natural.
To Ann’s surprise she could not see the bruise when she was finished, though she had no idea if her mother would find anything; she was always good at finding that kind of stuff. But it did not matter at the moment, all she could do was smile and hope she was not discovered.          
When Ann walked out of the bathroom, she decided to go see if her mother was really home or not. “Mom, are you home!” she called.
There was no reply
She’s probably in the Art room, thought Ann, I better go make sure that her latest sculpture hasn’t fallen over and crushed flat.
Susan Wickerson was Ann’s mother. She was a painter and a sculptor. Sue was a wonderful, talented, funny woman, but Ann wasn’t very close to her. Of course she loved her mother, it’s just that Ann and Sue never really saw eye to eye.
Ann marched up the stairs to her mother’s Art room. Once she reached the top step she turned to the first door on the right. Just as Ann was about to turn the doorknob she heard something that made her freeze. It was a small noise, but it was unlike anything Ann had ever heard. It sounded like a motor was running while someone ran their nails down a chalk board. Ann look around, trying to figure out where the noise had
come from. The noise came again, but this time Ann was ready for it. It seemed as if it had come from the attic and that made Ann wonder, what was in the attic? Immediately without further thought, Ann decided to investigate. Quietly, Ann stepped down the hall to the hatch in the ruff that led to the attic. She stood beneath the hatch and got up on the tip of her toes to reach the opening, then as soon as she grabbed hold of the piece of wood blocking the entrants she pulled down hard. A ladder come rolling down after the wood, as soon as it hit the ground Ann put one foot on the ladder and began to climb. Once she was half way up the ladder someone called her name. “Ann, dear was that you calling?”
“Oh no.” whispered Ann. She had completely forgotten Sue had more than once told Ann that she did not want her in the attic. It was too late to turn back now, so Ann finished the climb. Once at the top Ann grabbed the ladder and pulled it and the hatch door up. She closed the hatch just in time to see the Art room doorknob rattling.
Ann took a deep breath. That was a close one! Ann was eight years old the last time she tried to get into the attic, she had barley even stood in front of the hatch before her mother came and yelled at her for tying to enter such a “dangerous place”. Well, at least that was how Sue had put it.
Ann looked around, it seemed just like any other ordinary attic, books were piled in corners, old used things were shoved in places where they could fit, junk was scattered on shelves, and cobwebs were found along the walls. It was just like an attic, Why did sue not want her up here?
There was that noise again, but Ann could hear it much clearer up here. Ann followed the noise, passing boxes and other junk; she finely came to where she thought the noise was coming from. Ann was standing in front of a wooden wall, the noise had stopped now. Was this where the noise had come from?
Behind her, Ann heard something fall to the floor as if someone had pushed it over. Ann jumped and spun around, to see a small box on the floor and junk scattered around it. That was weird, thought Ann. She
looked around to make sure that she really was the only person in the room; Ann seemed to be the only living thing in the whole attic. She bent over and picked the scattered things off the floor and placed them back in the small box, but the last item she picked up caught her attention. It was a small photograph. Ann placed a figure to her chin as she stared at the photo; it was so strange, there were five people in the photo, a man, a woman, two little girls and a baby. The to little girls looked to be at least five or six years old, the tallest girl had light blond hair, blue eyes and a smile that could brighten the whole area for miles to come. The second girl had freckles on her baby- soft skin, her eyes glinted like green emeralds and her hair was as red as a rose. The man was tall and handsome, he had dark hair, sparkling green eyes and wore a dark blue cloak. The baby could hardly be recognized as a girl or a boy because it was raped up tightly in a blanket. But Ann didn’t pay much attention to those people; her eyes were mainly focused on the woman in the photo. The woman had long blond hair, dark red lips and sky blue eyes. She looked like Ann’s mother, only younger.
Questions filled Ann’s mind, questions like, what did this mean. Who was this man, her father? Ann had never met her father; her parents had divorced when she was a baby. Did this photo suggest that Ann had a family like this? Could she have been the baby? Were the two little girls her sisters?
“Ann, where are you!”
Ann jumped. Oh no, she had completely forgotten about her mother. She ran back to the hatch taking the photo with her.
I will have to investigate latter, thought Ann as she went down the hatch.

Friday, April 15, 2011

A Face So Unseen: Author Unknown

One being, one role,
One purpose, one soul.
We see a boy, but this boy is unseen,
His hair unkempt, and his face unclean.
He goes places that to some seems haunting,
And he lives in ways that to some seems daunting.
We pass him by every day and every night,
But hardly a day has passed that we haven't seen him fight his fights.
Most favor their clothes and their fancy cars,
He is just glad he doesn't live behind bars. 
Some worry about their looks and the events in their lives,
He worries about food and men with big knifes.
Some see him on the streets and say to their peers,
"Don't look at him, he's nothing; don't waste your tears."
One being, one role,
One purpose, one soul.
These words mean so much, and to much they mean,
But do they imply to a face so unseen?
Is he a being?
Does he have a role?
Does he have a purpose?
Does he even have a soul?
Some wonder these questions, as if they need to think,
And the answers they revived make me want to sink.  
But I do not wonder and I don't think of him so low
In truth I don't think him to be my foe.

If you wish to see him as I, you must be keen, 
For non have been as compassionate as me, 
for this face so unseen...

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Another Reason To Look Forward To Summer!

I love to watch the Harry Potter movies! Part 1 was pretty cool, and it almost went completely by the book! Now it is time to see if the series final movie is the best of them all!Cross you fingers everyone because part 2 comes to theaters on July 15th 2011!!! 

Don't Stop Believing-Boyce Avenue

If you heard the original song of "Don't stop believing", then you will love this version by Boyce Avenue; it is really good!!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

New book by Rick Riordan coming out in May!

The second book of Rick Riordan's Kane Chronicles is coming out around May 3rd, 2011!!! Keep your eyes open for it! 
If you haven't read book one, do so! It is a very good book with lots of thrilling adventures, and exciting twists! It also teaches you a lot about Egyptian history!   

Count Down!!!

I have begun the count down till the first day of summer! For me it is only 44 days!!!
How much time is it for everyone else?
I can not wait for school to get out! It's a whole three months of freedom, sweet, sweet freedom!
What are some of the things you guys plan to do over summer vacation?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Granade- By Bruno Mars

This is one of my most favorite songs on Youtube. When you listen closely to the words you hear a very good message about getting your heart broken and how it hurts. (Not that it is a good thing to get your heart broken) :D