Category Archives: Project #1

Hills Like White Elephants- First Person Point of View

First Person Narrative (Jig)

(Part 1)

I gazed at the hills across the valley of the Ebro. The longer I stared at them, the more I noticed how white the hills were, even more so with the bright and cloudless sky. They seemed to stretch forever too, and they almost looked like white elephants. It’s really a rather funny thought, but somehow it took heavy weight in my heart. It was a bothersome feeling I couldn’t get rid of, and as the days passed by it only got worse. The air was thick in the hot afternoon sun. It was rather blinding, though I barely felt it inside of the bar; the only shade on that side of the station with two lines of rails that ran parallel to the platform, one on either side of it. The express train from Barcelona would come in forty minutes to take us to Madrid. Yet it was as if the forty minutes had mastered the disguise of living as a second and an eternity. I stared at the hills again; they appeared longer this time. I took a deep breath. The less I thought about it, the easier it would be,  but I couldn’t. I couldn’t help but wonder what she or he would be like. To wonder if she’d have his eyes, the deepest blue of the sea; or if he’d have my smile, the one he’d use to get out of any troublesome situation.

      Would she travel and drink all the absinthe and beer the world has to offer? He’d probably be as tall as he is, as demanding, and he too would have the chance to be a father like the man in front of me, and hopefully, he’d want to be. It was silly of me to think he’d want to keep it, to dream of a life that wasn’t defined by drinking and traveling. But why would he ever think of giving up that kind of life?  To trade his own happiness for my own? If I go through with this he’d love me like he once did and things will go back to how they were. He wouldn’t leave me, would he? No, he loved me, definitely loved me, but maybe not enough. I mentioned the white elephants, even though I knew he’s probably never seen one. Of course, he never had.

“ I might have,” the man says,” Just because I say I wouldn’t have doesn’t prove anything,”

But he didn’t say he wouldn’t have, he said he never had.  He wouldn’t have argued over something so frivolous before. Then again, I wouldn’t have been so upset about this. Any day before this I would have laughed it off, and he would have laughed with me.  I wanted to enjoy this moment, but I felt he didn’t care enough to be amused by me. I shouldn’t have mentioned the hills looking like elephants, how stupid.

After a while, we ordered another drink, and he droned on and on about the procedure as if he thought it would comfort me. He was always like this, pretending he knew everything, especially my thoughts and feelings. I suppose I didn’t mind. He always knew what was best for me. Or what was best for him? No, what was best for us.

“And you think then we’ll be all right and be happy?”  I took deep breaths, focusing my eyes on anything but his face. I looked at the other side of the station, where fields of grain and trees ran along the banks of Ebro. Turning back I noticed the contrast to this side of the station, where everything was brown, almost barren. My heart felt heavy again. I took another sip of beer and gazed at the green fields on the other side.
“I know we will. You don’t have to be afraid. I’ve known lots of people that have done it.”
“So have I,” I whispered. “And afterward they were all so happy.”

Happy. Were they really happy? Would this make us stronger? Happier? I looked back at all the places we had been, all the things we had done. Everything was a blur. It seemed like all we ever did was look at things and try new drinks. Was that really all we ever did? I reached my hand out to the curtain, feeling the bamboo beads between my hand.

“Well,” the man said, “if you don’t want to you don’t have to. I wouldn’t have you do it if you didn’t want to. But I know it’s perfectly simple.”
“And you really want to?” I ask him, my eyes searching for any signs of skepticism.
“I think it’s the best thing to do. But I don’t want you to do it if you don’t really want to.” I stared at the bamboo beads, that funny feeling I had before slowly creeping in again.
  “And if I do it you’ll be happy and things will be like they were and you’ll love me?”
“I love you now. You know I love you.” The words felt as hollow as the bamboo I held in my hand. I knew I wouldn’t be the same person after these circumstances, neither would he, nor our relationship.

“I know. But if I do it, then it will be nice again if I say things are like white elephants, and you’ll like it?’” I asked desperately because I wanted him to tell me things would be okay and mean it. He tells me, “I’ll love it. I love it now but I just can’t think about it. You know how I get when I worry.” I wanted to believe him, but I knew that nothing would be the same.  It would be foolish of me to think everything could go back to being normal but could they? Of, course they could. That’s what he kept telling me. It’s simple. I’m doing this because he wants this; I want this. Do I really want this? She’d have my hair. He tells me that it’s not really an operation and that he’d be with me the entire time, but I don’t really care as long as things go back to the way they used to be. He would have his smile. As long as he keeps loving me,  I’ll be fine. He’s still talking, why is he still talking? It’s so hot in here, I’m so sweaty. The train won’t be long; one more beer and I’ll be fine.


Comparing Point of Views

(Part 2)

Multiple factors such as setting, plot, and theme contribute to the outcome of a story. However, one may argue that the narration of the story definitely has a hand in its final result. In Hills Like White Elephants, Ernest Hemingway uses objective third person point of view to narrate an exchange of dialogue between a man and a girl addressing an abortion that may or may not happen. However, at first, the reader would most likely be confused with the dialogue and have no idea what the story is about, to begin with. This was probably done in order for the reader to be immersed in the environment rather than the characters. Interestingly, Hemingway also takes advantage of third-person narrative in order to focus the reader’s attention on the conversation, offering a more nuanced version of each character’s perspective.Nevertheless, by rewriting the narrative in first person point of view from the girl, the reader is able to have a better understanding of the tension in the dialogue between the man and the girl. Therefore, the point of view of a story is vital because it affects how much a reader knows, what they focus on when analyzing the story, and the character’s internal struggle. the internal conflict of the character, and their emotions.

Point of view contributes to how much the reader knows about anything and anyone in the story being told. In Hills Like White Elephants the reader is able to recognize a tension between a man and a girl speaking about an operation. For example, after trying Anis del Toro, the girl comments on the drink by saying, “ I wanted to try this new drink. That’s all we do, isn’t it- look at things and try new drinks?” (Hemingway) This line may appear to be meaningless at first glance, but after finishing the story it becomes apparent how important it is when placed in context to the situation given. The girl is more than torn about having to abort her child but is even open to the change that would happen if she kept it. She realizes how linear their relationship actually is, and now that she is with a child it’s clear to her how superficial and in a way, fleeting their lives were, and that maybe a baby would give it more meaning. It is on complete contrast to how the man feels since he doesn’t want any change, evident in how he responds to the girl by saying, “ I guess so,” a response that is rather unfazed. In this way, the reader has to think about the theme of the story, without actually saying it. Instead of outright telling us that this whole situation is the result of an unborn baby repelled by a partner threatened by change, Hemingway cleverly uses third person narrative to give little hints as to what is going on between the two main characters. The clues are scattered throughout, especially in the conversations with the man and the girl. It can also be noted how the narrator in Hemingway’s version has very little presence. Instead, the spotlight is turned to the conversations of the two characters. However, with the point of view changed to the first-person narrative, there is more attention on the thoughts of the girl than the actual conversation she is having with her partner. In the retelling of the story, the same line is used, but not in conversation,“ Will this make us stronger? Happier? I looked back at all the places we had been, all the things we had done. Everything was a blur. It seemed like all we ever did was look at things and try new drinks. Was that really all we ever did?” By translating her lines into inner thoughts, the words she said are given more emotion, while not giving away too much. Her narration shows how unsure she is, and how it is affecting her emotionally. When she asks those questions, she is more or less wondering if the operation will be worth it, or if their relationship was an illusion all along. Additionally, the reader is also able to understand the severity of the decision that she’s to make. This comes to show how the point of view creates a better picture of their circumstances and therefore affects how much the reader knows and understands from the narrative.

Point of view can also change what readers focus on when analyzing the story. Hemingway is aware of this since he takes moments in between dialogue to describe the setting of the story. This is evident in the first paragraph of the story, where the background or setting of the story is introduced first, rather than the characters. After the characters are introduced, it isn’t clear what their names are until the male protagonist mentions the girl’s name. Even then, the man is never introduced by his name, but rather, he is simply called the “ American man”. Hemingway does this particularly to show how the environment surrounding the protagonists symbolize the tension growing between the two characters. For example, in Hills Like White Elephants, after a long conversation with her partner, the woman walks to the other side of the station, which is described like this, “Across the other side were fields of grain and trees along the banks of Ebro.” (Hemingway). The fertile ground on the other side is a comparison to the choice the girl has to make since abundance in nature, is often used as a symbol for fertility in women. In the retelling, the girl looks at the other side, “I look at the other side of the station, where fields of grain and trees ran along the banks of Ebro. Turning back I notice the contrast to this side of the station, where everything is brown, almost barren. My heart feels heavy again. I take another sip of beer and gaze at the green fields on the other side”. The girl is now gazing at the other side while contemplating on her decision, linking nature and her own life together. Yet the artificial “shade” of the bar shields her from the reality of the situation.

Throughout the narration the girl named Jig internally struggles with deciding whether or not to go through with the operation; However, Hemingway’s narration doesn’t make it as noticeable as the rewritten version does. She’s aware that regardless of what happens, things will never go back to how they once were. In the rewritten narration, repetition is utilized to accentuate the reassurance Jig seeks from the man she’s with and her decision about the operation. For example,  “He was always like this, pretending he knew everything, especially my thoughts and feelings. I suppose I didn’t mind. He always knew what was best for me. Or what was best for him? No, what was best for us.” shows that she’s pretty certain that once the operation is done with that he’s going to leave her because she becomes overwhelmed by her fear of abandonment and her hunger for his love. In addition to repetition, Jig wanders back and forth between deciding to go through with the abortion and imagining an alternate lifestyle of how her daughter or son would grow up to be, in the rewritten version  it says, “He tells me that it’s not really an operation and that he’d be with me the entire time, but I don’t really care as long as things go back to the way they used to be. He would have his smile.” By demonstrating her thought process the reader is able to see how vulnerable and uncertain she is about the situation she’s placed in. She attempts to reassure herself by coping with beers, which also reflects on her lifestyle with the man, and therefore brings to question if she’s ready to leave it behind. Regardless, having the story narrated in first person point of view gives the reader a better understanding of the girl’s thought process and therefore helps sympathize with her unstable emotions.


There are different kinds of Points of View in which a story can be told. Generally speaking, the third point of view is when a story is told using “he” or “she” and “him” or “her” rather than “me” and “I”. Whether or not the story has insight into the character’s thoughts or feelings solely depends on what type of third person point of view, whether it’s omniscient or limited. Omniscient refers to all knowing, therefore insinuating knowing the thoughts and feelings of all characters, and limited point of view read refers to knowing the thoughts and feelings of one character, a selected few or none at all. The first point of view is when the characters use the word “I”, “me”, or “mine”, in other words, anything that indicates that the story is being told by the character themselves. Ernest Hemingway wrote Hills Like White Elephants in a third person point of view to provoke thought and observation of context clues. However, the vagueness of the story simply leads to confusion and misunderstandings. By rewriting the story in the first point of view from the girl, the reader is able to grasp a better concept of what the story is about and is able to reach a new level of emotional understanding. Therefore, this comes to show how the point of view plays a vital role in the outcome of a narrative.

Project #1

Justin Liang

Professor. Jodi Rosen

ENG 2001-D536

Project 1

Part 1

My name is Mrs. Mallard and recently I’ve been having trouble with my heart.

It was a bright and sunny day. But the day changed when I had heard the news about the death of my husband. I was told by my sister Josephine. She was crying and trying to tell me at the same time. Her husbands friend Richard was there too. He was in the newspaper office when intelligence of the railroad disaster was received, with my husband’s name on the list of people “killed”. Richard wanted to make sure that the death was assure and heard the second telegram and came as quick as he could to get to me.

Tears came down my face and I couldn’t take it anymore. I cried in my sister’s arms. But the grief was to much for me and I ran into my room by myself. I didn’t want to have anyone follow me into the room.

I sat on my armchair in front of the open window in my room. I slowly sank into my chair and felt the exhaustion from all the crying.

As I looked out of the window I could see the new spring life. In the streets below a peddler was crying his wares. The notes of a distant song which some one was sinning reached me faintly, and countless sparrows were twittering in the eaves.

There were patches of blue sky showing here and there through the clouds that had met and piled one above the other in the west facing my window.

I sat with my head thrown back up the cushion of my chair, motionless, and then I began to sob and started to cry again.

I was young with a calm face which gave off a certain strength. But now it was gone and all that was left was a dull stare looking up at the patches of the blue sky. I wasn’t looking up at a reflection, but I was in a suspension of intelligent thought.

Somewhere deep inside me I knew something was coming and I waited for it, fearfully. What was it? I didn’t know; it was too subtle and elusive to name. But I felt it, creeping out of the sky, reaching towards me through the sounds, the scents, and the color that filled the air.

My bosom rose and fell tumultuously. I was beginning to recognize the thing that was coming to possess me, and I was striving to beat to back with my will—as powerless as my two white slender hands would have been. As I abandoned myself a little whispered word escaped my slightly parted lips. I said it over and over under my breath: “free, free, free!” The vacant stare and the look of terror had followed in my eyes. It stayed keen and bright. My pulse began to beat fast, and the coursing blood warmed and relaxed every inch of my body.

I did not stop to ask if it were or were not a monstrous joy that held her. A clear and exalted perception enabled me to dismiss the suggestion as trivial. I knew that I would weep again when I saw the kind, tender hands folded in death; the face that had never looked save with love upper me, fixed and gray and dead. But I saw beyond that bitter moment a long procession of years to come that would belong to me absolutely. And I opened and spread my arms out to them in welcome.

There would be no one to live for during these coming years; I would live for myself. There would be no powerful will bending me in that blind persistence with which men and women believe they have a right to impose a private will upon a fellow-creature. A kind intention or a cruel intention made the act seem no less a crime as I looked upon it in that brief moment of illumination.

And yet I had loved him—sometimes. Often I had not. What did it matter! What could love, the unsolved mystery, count for in the face of this possession of self-assertion which I suddenly recognized as the strongest impulse of my being.

“Free! Body and soul free!” I whispered.

I hear Josephine outside the door telling me to open the door. She was begging that I open the door and that I was making myself ill. She wanted to know what I was doing. Over and over she asked me to open the door.

“Go away. I am not making myself ill.” No; I was drinking in the very elixir of life through that open window.

My fancy was running riot along those days ahead of me. Spring days, and summer days, and all sorts of days that would be my own. I breathed a quick prayer that life might be long. It was only yesterday I had thought with a shudder that life might be long.

I arose at length and opened the door to my sister’s importunities. There was a feverish triumph in her eyes, and she carried herself unwittingly like a goddess of Victory. I clasped my sister’s waist, and together we descended the stairs. Richards stood waiting for us at the bottom.

Someone was opening the front door with a latchkey. It was my husband who entered, a little travel-stained, composedly carrying his grip-sack and umbrella. He told me that he had been far from the scene of the accident, and did not even know there had been one. He stood amazed at Josephine’s piercing cry; at Richards quick motion to screen him from the view of me.

Then everything went black. My heart aching and then silence.

Part 2

The Story of An Hour is a interesting story because it is written in a third person (omniscient) point of view. The story doesn’t just focus on one person it switches from person to person. So, I wanted to change that a bit and focus on the main character of the story, Mrs. Mallard. I decided to do a first person point of view to show the emotion and thought process that Mrs. Mallard is going through instead of showing other point of views.

The Story of An Hour was originally written in a third person (omniscient) point of view. Using the third person point of view the story shows what is going on with everyone. It shows a different side to what a person is saying. The language of the story is also different. In the story there is a line that says “She was young, with a fair, calm face, whose lines bespoke repression and even a certain strength.” This sentence gives a sense to the reader that this is what people thought of Mrs. Mallard. Also we can see what other characters are doing when the main character is somewhere else. In the story there is a line that says “Louise, open the door! I beg; open the door– you will make yourself ill. What are you doing, Louise? For heaven’s sake open the door.” This line was said by Mrs. Mallard’s sister Josephine who was worried about her sister. The third person narration shows details about what is going on with everyone and doesn’t focus on one person. Which is why I decided to rewrite the story in a first person narration to show readers what is going on with Mrs. Mallard only.

In my version of The Story of An Hour I decided to go with a first person point of view on Mrs. Mallard. My reasoning for this was because I believed that we didn’t get to see what was really going on in Mrs. Mallard’s mind. The introduction of my version of the story was different. I decided to make the intro as if we were in Mrs. Mallard’s mind. I decided to introduce Mrs. Mallard to the readers with a “My name is…” Using this type of introduction I feel like it allows readers to know that we are in someone’s mind. It helps give them the sense that this story will be in a first person narration. Going further into the story things were mostly similar to the original. That is until we reach the part where Josephine was trying to get her sister out of the room. When I got the part where Josephine was trying to get her sister out of the room I wondered, what was going on with Mrs. Mallard at that time? I decided to keep everything the same except I decided to put in that Mrs. Mallard was getting annoyed with her sister. In my version I wrote “Josephine keeps knocking and with each knock I start to get annoyed.” I did this because earlier in the story Mrs. Mallard didn’t want anyone to bother her and Josephine was persistent with trying to get Mrs. Mallard out of the room. I figured this change would surprise the reader with something they didn’t know. Lastly the ending of the story was slightly different. In the original we see that Mrs. Mallard’s husband wasn’t actually dead and she then dies of her heart disease. I decided to show that Mrs. Mallard’s freedom was taken away from her now that she knew that her husband wasn’t dead. My reasoning for this was because Mrs. Mallard felt free from her husband know he died. She says “ Free! Body and soul free!” in the original. So, as soon as she see that her husband isn’t dead I wanted to show that Mrs. Mallard says in her head that she is no longer free now that her husband is back and then dies of her heart disease. Also in the original it says “When the doctors came they said she had died of heart disease–of the joy that kills.” Seeing this I knew that my version would make sense. Mrs. Mallard was happy that she was free but all that was taken away from her and she dies. This version of the story shows readers the more in depth details of what really went on in Mrs. Mallard’s mind.

Both versions of the stories show something. The original shows the thought process of the other characters in the story. The language also helps the reader get a sense of how the characters feel. My version show readers what Mrs. Mallard thinks and what she is going through. I feel like the language I used helped readers know more about Mrs. Mallard. In the end both stories tell what happens to Mrs. Mallard in their own way.


Anthology Project

Mahnoor Sheikh

Professor. Jodi Rosen

ENG 2001-D536

Project 1


For the first time in my entire life there is a loud KNOCK! That echoes through my wings and startles me and makes me rather annoyed. Now. Moments from my timely death, something different decides to happen. Then another vicious sound cuts through the once silence room, CRACK. Which shakes loose dust from all corners of the room and ignites a cluster of intense buzzing. There are flies screeching hysterically flying back and forth into each other. There are so many of them though frantically flying that they look like a rising spike of smoke ascending from the still figure on the bed, into a dark black cloud. BZZZZ, BZZZZ, BZZZ. They are furiously buzzing louder and louder, much louder than any cluster of bumble bees. Still there are more flies rising, like a black sheet or a vortex of fear and consumption.  I want to get as far away from this meddlesome noise, of both my fellow flies and whatever that louder sound is but my body is weak. Regardless, I still decide to make an effort. I fling myself with all my strength towards a solitary narrow crack in the wall, where an ever slight breeze blows in. The air coming in is contrary to that of the environment of this confined space, it is fresh and clean. Against the stale, sour air within this room. I am able to slip through the crack, but before slipping through into sanctuary, I hear deep sounding murmurs coming from the other side of an old wooden door. The same door the ruckus is coming from. These brand new sounds differ to those of the shrill voice that are usually made. These voices sound different, they sound angry. I should leave immediately and pass away in peace, but I am paralyzed, by an aroma familiar but better. Blood. There is warm, gushy, tasty blood in those sounds. I have never had it fresh. The shrill voiced figure who I have not seen in a while she had blood, but it wasn’t fresh. It was old and the flavor was bland and vaguely metallic, lumpy and cold. They were so cold. But I was never too picky so her blood was mine. The shrill voiced figure had a friend who never made a sound in the entire time I existed. They were not tasty at all but they were accessible. Never moved, never winced, me and millions of other fly and maggots devoured them. Day after day. They would not swat at us. They just laid there without a care in the world. The shrill one would at least get up sometimes walk around look at their reflection in the mirror, comb their hair and eat. But this one, still. So was their blood. They never moved a muscle. And they were colder than the other one. If the shrill one was ice, this one was a winter day in the arctic. The two figures interacted a lot, the shrill one would cuddle up against the still one often. They kissed. And laid side by side for hours on end. Wrapped in each others embrace. But, the shrill voiced one, has not been around for a while.


One last large wallop and BANG. The door gives way, and opens. My curiosity has piqued and I look to see several monumental figures but none the shrill one from before. All of the flies false confidence disperses as they all start flying out through the newly opened door or cracks in the floorboards or through keyholes or windows. I caution towards my crack. But still look on to see the expressions on their faces. These figures look different they are larger and their flesh is not discolored. Some hold a handkerchief to their noses, while others started coughing and gagging, one of them looks completely immobilized from fear. I observed them closely, every step closer into the room, every bit of dust their bodies disturbs. And then one figure with the look of horror on their face nears towards the exposed figure on the bed, who is almost like them. This figure’s flesh near gone and he has oozed and fused all over the bed in an array of browns, reds and blacks. He is literally apart of the bed. One of the more pink and motionful figures leans close towards the bed and on a pillow beside the cold figure, and picks up a solitary strand of hair he appears to be sickened and he begins gagging again. He drops the hair into the hand of one of the other large figures and rushes towards the door. In his path he unwittingly side steps and his shoe comes down in a swift motion going to crush me. And I am left to accept,

That this is the end.



My first reading of a “Rose for Emily”, by William Faulkner was, in all honesty, confusing. For starters I did not personally understand why I would want the extremely limited point of view of an unnamed person from town, that made any information they provided seem like gossip. Then there was the way this no named civilian dictated the unraveling of events, in a disorganized, non sequential manner. They jumped from one moment of time to another so rapidly it was difficult to tell what was past or present. For instance talking about going to Emily’s home requesting she pay taxes to the moment the town started complaining about her house smelling bad, while the town complaining chronologically preceded the town asking Emily to pay taxes. Point of view of the narrator and the temporal unraveling of events, depicted through the use of tense, are both key elements of storytelling. The nature of tense that is narrated can create a tone, nostalgia if the the narrator is remembering previous events, such as in memoirs, or to build suspense if in present tense and we, the audience, are experiencing the events at the same moment as the protagonist, which is common to the horror genre. The narrative style establishes how much the reader knows and sets up bias based on who the storyteller is and their relationship to the story. In my retelling of Faulkner’s short story I change who the narrator is, the person they narrate in, the tense the narrator is talking in, and make the series of events run linear rather than jumbled up in order to reduce confusion of which events happened before others.

As previously acknowledged Faulkner’s narrator is an unnamed person from town, very little is known about the speaker but what can be inferred is that they are white, since they referred to Ms. Emily’s servant Tobe, as “the negro”. It can also be inferred that the narrator is a man because of the line, “Only a man of Colonel Sartoris’ generation and thought could have invented it, and only a woman could have believed it”, referring to women as naive, it can be assumed that a woman would not make a generalized negative statement about all women.  The benefits of this narrator is that they are witnessing the events but are not a main character, which means they had no influence in the events of the story, we only have access to their perception of them. This does not make the narrator completely reliable though, the narrator reveals their bias through their word choice, they seem to pity Emily Grierson. Admitting that they and the town felt “really sorry for her” and describing her as “SICK”, saying “poor Emily”..

I did not want my narrator to have any condescension for Emily Grierson, so clearly they could not be anyone from town. That left Emily herself. But then her bias would be much more extreme since she is the protagonist, she could not be objective in describing her own actions. So, I used defamiliarization, presenting common things in an unfamiliar way. My retelling is from the point of view of an objective fly who is about to die and is one of many other flys who have been eating Homer Barron’s decaying body. A fly has no understanding of morality, race, gender, classism, but most importantly no knowledge of Emily Grierson’s name and the respect that was once attached to it. As opposed to Faulkner’s narrator who describes Emily as someone metaphorically falling from grace losing her father, her money, and the towns respect as she physically and mentally declined over time. The fly just refers to Emily as the “shrill voiced figure”.

In my story the fly dictates events in the present tense the audience is experiencing the the events at the same time as the fly, this creates a suspense. Neither the fly nor the audience is aware of what the banging sound is on the other side of the door. Seen in lines such as, “For the first time in my entire life there is a loud KNOCK! That echoes through my wings and startles me and makes me rather annoyed”. And, “Then another vicious sound cuts through the once silence room, CRACK”. In my iteration of the story I stay within the same present tense a majority of the story only implying what happened previously. For instance how there had never been any loud banging before that day. While the opposite is apparent in the original version of the story seen in the transitions of talking about when it was assumed Emily purchased poison to kill herself to the town assuming she had passed away to her relatives moving in with her and then her dying years later. In my rendition all of the events are chronological so nothing is out of place.

A Rose for Emily From Emily’s Point of View.

Part 1:

When my father died, all he left me was his house. What was once an elegant estate in one of the best neighborhoods of Jefferson had now become a decaying building standing in a neighborhood taken over by cotton wagons and gasoline pumps. As a Grierson, I was part of nobility and expected to live a life of luxury. Instead, I ended up feeling betrayed by my father into living a life of poverty with no one to look after me but myself and my negro. A while after my father had died, some of the townspeople began demanding that I pay taxes. This was a preposterous demand as I was remitted of paying any taxes due to the fact that my father had loaned a great amount of money to the town and they are still unable to pay it back. At first they wrote me a few letters requesting me to pay the taxes, however i ignored their nonsensical claims and simply mailed them back. One day, they had the nerve to come into my home and ask me to pay taxes. I was enraged and told them to speak to Colonel Sartoris. I never heard from them again.

A year or so after the death of my father, the town had decided to pave the sidewalks. They had signed a contract with the company who had arrived to begin their work in the summer. The man who came from the company was named Homer Barron. He was a northerner. Tall, dark, and with a demanding voice. He became acquainted with everyone in town in a fairly short amount of time. He was able to make everyone laugh and was the only person who had managed to grow close to me after the death of my father. We began going on drives in his yellow-wheeled buggy on Sunday afternoon.

The townspeople thought i was not aware of what they were saying about me and Homer Barron, but I was completely aware. I just did not take heed to what they were saying as they were of lower status than me, as I was a Grierson. After some time had passed, some of my kin from Alabama had come over and demanded I get married to Homer Barron, as what I was doing with him was a bad example to the townspeople. I did not attend on marrying him as he was a northerner and a Grierson would not marry a northerner. However, I still decided to go along with it so as not to raise any suspicions on what I was about to do. I pretended to be planning for the wedding. I had been to the jeweler’s and ordered a man’s toilet set in silver , with the letters H.B. on each piece. I also bought a complete outfit of men’s clothing, including a nightshirt.

One day I decided the only way to get out of the marriage would be to kill Homer. I found my way to the druggist and asked him to give me the best poison he had. After much persuasion, he finally had the arsenic delivered to my home. That day, I had put some arsenic into his food. He went to sleep that night and never woke up again. Since that day I had never left the house for fear of someone discovering the body. I did not care to move it or bury it and it remained in the bed in the same position for years to come. At one point his body had decayed into the bed and it was impossible to move. I decided to keep him there and did not let anyone visit my home. When the neighbors began complaining of the smell I took no notice. After my death, I knew that they would soon discover the source of the smell.

Part 2:

“A Rose for Emily,” is originally written in the first person point-of-view from the perspective of either the residents of the town as a whole or a specific resident of the town. The thoughts of the people of the town are clear as well as some of their emotions. It is very clear to see the conflict from everyones perspective except for Emily. This is the reason i chose to write it in Emily’s point of view.

The story is set in a southern town which seems to follow traditional values. Many of the things that Emily and her family does seems to go against these values, and due to this, many of the townspeople dislike her. They not only dislike her due to this but it seems as if they are jealous of her former high standing in society. Telling the story from Emily’s point-of view will give the audience a different perspective into the story. Instead of having a biased version of Emily being portrayed to the audience, they will have direct access to the thoughts and emotions of Emily Grierson.

The woman in the yellow wallpaper.

rittny Roberts

English 2001

Project one

One night when the moon light came through the window, Jane thought she saw the wallpaper  move. The faint figure behind seemed to shake the pattern, just as if she wanted to get out. She got up softly and went to feel and see if the paper did move, and when she came back John was awake.“What is it, little girl?” he said. “Don’t go walking about like that—you’ll get cold.”” She woke john by accident but thought it was a good time to talk. She told him she wanted to leave, he said no because there wasn’t any good reason. He thought it would be better if they stayed because she was getting better. She said “Better in body perhaps”—I began, and stopped short, for he sat up straight and looked at me with such a stern, reproachful look that I could not say another word.” He told her not to think or speak in that way and that she was being foolish. They only had 3 more weeks in the house and there was no reason to leave early. She didn’t say another word.

For the rest of her time there she focused on the strange paper. At first the paper just seemed strange and shapeless but soon enough it started to take form. “I didn’t realize for a long time what the thing was that showed behind,—that dim sub-pattern,—but now I am quite sure it is a woman.”. What she saw behind that paper was herself, a version of herself that was free. Charlotte reflected the parts of Jane she wouldn’t show to others. Charlotte creep by day and hide in the shadows whenever someone passed by. Jane would never creep by daylight, she taught it was humiliating. When Jane creep at daylight she would lock the door so john wouldn’t suspect something. They seemed like parallels.  

As the days came to an end Jane wanted to tear that horrid paper from the walls, she wanted to free the woman trapped behind, she wanted to free herself  “As soon as it was moonlight, and that poor thing began to crawl and shake the pattern, I got up and ran to help her. I pulled and she shook, I shook and she pulled, and before morning we had peeled off yards of that paper.” Tearing down that paper, setting her free, to Jane that was a form of rebellion to her husband. Jane was in fact sick physically but her husband caused her health to deplenish mentally as well. By tearing down the wallpaper she could now show him what he created “I don’t want to go out, and I don’t want to have anybody come in, till John comes. I want to astonish him.”. She kept tearing down the paper until john came banging on the door. She had locked the door and throw the key out the window, so she told him where he could find it. John went down and got the keys to unlock the door. He was worried for his wife, as he unlocked the door and entered the room he saw his wife tearing the yellow wallpaper from the walls. Charlotte saw john enter the room and kept on creeping as she was before. I kept on creeping just the same, but I looked at him over my shoulder. “I’ve got out at last,” said I, “in spite of you and Jane! And I’ve pulled off most of the paper, so you can’t put me back!’. From seeing thing john fainted but charlotte kept creepy over him trying to remove the rest of the paper.


Brittny Roberts

English 2001

Part 2 of Project 1

  The Yellow Wallpaper  was written in first person but will be retold with a third person limited narrator to give the reader a different point of view. The yellow wallpaper takes place in an old mansion, the narrator is ill and stays in a room that has old yellow paper on the wall. The story focuses on her writing down what happens in the house during the summer. She speaks about her husband and her health but her focus is on her fixation with the wallpaper in the room she stays in. In my retelling of the story I try to focus more on her fixation with the wallpaper and how she later on starts identify with it.

The narrator from the original story was given a name. I gave her a name for two main reasons. First I wanted the story to be easier to follow, most things in the original story is vague and can be confusing. The second reason I gave her a name was to help show the point in time where Jane(the original narrator) and the woman in the wallpaper were the  two different people, when they become the same and when one took over the other.

I originally wanted to have a 3rd person omniscient narrator  but I found myself only focusing on Jane and charlotte, I consider the two be the same person so I decided to change it to 3rd person limited. In both stories it shows Jane and charlotte becoming one. “I don’t like to look out of the windows even—there are so many of those creeping women, and they creep so fast. I wonder if they all come out of that wallpaper as I did?” in this quote from the original story you can see how it seems like there is two different personalities. Jane is responsible for the first sentence while charlotte is for the second sentence.  “What she saw behind that paper was herself, a version of herself that was free. Charlotte reflected the parts of Jane she wouldn’t show to others.”, this is a sentence from my version on the story shows clearly that jane and charlotte are the same.

In the yellow wallpaper things that are stated are indirect and vague which leaves the reader wondering, for example in the original story it wasn’t clear that John had caused his wife to go insane. While in the retelling I was straight to the point,it was clear that Jane had created Charlotte but they were still the same person. This changes the way the reader imagines and understands the story.


A Rose for Emily from Tobe’s perspective

Part 1: Retelling


Miss Emily has been so ill up till now. Not sick in the body, but sick in the soul. Ever since Mr. Grierson died she’s been having difficulties. First, she almost seemed like she was in denial about his death, not allowing anyone in to remove his body, parading around for people, acting as though she wasn’t hurting. She did give in, eventually, but it took so long! I worry for her. She asked me to cut her hair. I didn’t want to, a woman her age ought to have at least shoulder length hair, but she made me cut it down to just about her ears. She looks younger, not how a lady her age should look.

Still, she’s at least socializing again, going out and about. There’s a new man in town, from up north. He’s a foreman for the company doing some civic construction in town, something or other Barron. I’m not sure how much I like the fella, but Miss Emily has taken a liking to him. He’s loud, and rude, and loves to be the center of attention, just like the yankee he is. He comes around most weekends and takes her for rides in the buggy, and then comes in here and order me around like I’m one of his workers! I wish one of us would leave so I’d never have to see him again.



Miss Emily and Homer have been consorting for over a year now. No one approves, and I think they know. Some of the Cousins Grierson have come to try to dissuade Emily from associating with Homer, which is for the best. He stays out late with the other men, drinking and doing Lord knows what. As they say, “He’s not the marrying kind.” She should be focused on a suitor more appropriate, someone from town, perhaps.

Not even the local minister approved, seeing as he came around to try to talk to her about it. At least, I believe he wanted to talk about that. All I really heard after l let him in were some raised voices on Emily’s part. He left shortly after, and she was not dissuaded at all since she’s still riding with Homer on the weekends and has even recently purchased a handful of presents for him, things that indicate a more intimate relationship than what they’ve shown so far. I believe she is planning something for him soon, a grand gesture. Whatever is to come, I hope it comes without her kin here. They are so difficult, bless their hearts!



Lord forgive us! We have committed the greatest sin! For weeks now, the Cousins Grierson have been haunting the halls in this house, whispering terrible things to Miss Emily, telling her that she’s throwing dirt upon the Family Name for being involved with a northerner, an “enemy”. I thought she was just letting their words roll off her back like water, but she had been listening the whole time! She’d just taken the words in her self, bottled them up and let the shame ferment. Her own blood had poisoned her, and then quickly fled!

When they had left, Miss Emily pulled me aside and explained all this. She kept going, telling me she loved Mr Barron, she wanted to spend forever with him, couldn’t handle him being with another woman, all of this. Then she told me her family and the people in town would never allow them to be together, which I already knew, but she even went so far as to admit her guilt about it all. She would not allow herself to be with him, no matter how much love she felt for him! So she continues, telling me of the arsenic she bought from the chemist and how she plans for me to use it in his food when he returns! God have mercy on me, I didn’t argue with her. I hate that man, and it would make her so happy! She’s all I worry about now.

Homer Barron came for supper and a chat the next evening. I had a stew on the cooker for the whole day, and fresh made rice. Emily and the man sat at the table, talking quietly and intensely, sipping on sherry. The arsenic came in a small brown bottle and in the form of round pellets. The instructions said to mix with water and pour onto the bait, so I just poured some into Homer’s stew bowl and served them both, careful not to mix up whose is whose. I then sat down in the kitchen, eating my own supper while listening to their conversation. Listening as Miss Emily cried and Homer became more and more tired in his responses. He didn’t understand what she was saying by the end. After a time, he asked to lay down until he felt better and his headache was gone. As I helped him carry himself up the stairs to the guest bedroom, he spilled blood from his mouth and it made the steps slick beneath our feet.

Well, I got him up into the bed and laid him down. Miss Emily asked me to leave the room and I heard her beginning to sob on my way out. Now I’m just sitting on my own bed coming to terms with what we’ve done. We killed that man! If any of the people here in town found out, Miss Emily would be locked away and I would be killed! Lord forgive me, no one can ever know.


Part 2: Examination

For my retelling I chose A Rose for Emily, but from the perspective of Tobe during the time leading up to Homer Barrons murder and directly after it. Instead of being a stream of consciousness type of first person narration, I chose to do it as more of a journal style. While A Rose for Emily is written in a first-person point of view from a character who was not involved in the events of the story and is therefore somewhat unreliable, and portrayed Emily as a near invincible character, my retelling is a first-person point of view from a first-hand perspective, and shows Emily as a more vulnerable, human character while in her own home.

One of the more prominent themes of A Rose for Emily is gossip. The whole story is told through a second hand recounting of the events, with townspeople constantly remarking about Emily and her family. They talk of her great-aunt and how she went crazy, and they talk about how the Grierson family, whether they are “like a tableau” or how little was left to Emily after her father passed.

“That was when people had begun to feel really sorry for her. People in our town, remembering how old lady Wyatt, her great-aunt, had gone completely crazy at last, believed that the Griersons held themselves a little too high for what they really were. None of the young men were quite good enough for Miss Emily and such. We had long thought of them as a tableau, Miss Emily a slender figure in white in the background, her father a spraddled silhouette in the foreground, his back to her and clutching a horsewhip, the two of them framed by the back-flung front door. So when she got to be thirty and was still single, we were not pleased exactly, but vindicated; even with insanity in the family she wouldn’t have turned down all of her chances if they had really materialized.”

In my retelling things are more intimate, told through the eyes of Tobe who witnessed everything that happened in the house. He sees things about Emily that others would not know, and his comments are based on that, like how fragile Emily really is.
“Miss Emily has been so ill up till now. Not sick in the body, but sick in the soul. Ever since Mr. Grierson died she’s been having difficulties. First, she almost seemed like she was in denial about his death, not allowing anyone in to remove his body, parading around for people, acting as though she wasn’t hurting. She did give in, eventually, but it took so long!”

The next difference between the original story and my limited retelling is how the people in each version perceive Emily. In the original version, peoples views of Emily are pretty much split down the middle, with some people thinking of her as southern nobility and others thinking she’s no better than them. Another thing people are split on is her relationship with Homer Barron. Some people were supportive, saying she deserved to be happy, while others were disapproving.

“At first we were glad that Miss Emily would have an interest, because the ladies all said, “Of course a Grierson would not think seriously of a Northerner, a day laborer.” But there were still others, older people, who said that even grief could not cause a real lady to forget noblesse oblige—without calling it noblesse oblige.”

In my retelling, Tobe has a much more mixed view of Emily. He’s disapproving of Homer for a few reasons, but he also wants Emily to be happy and he does anything to make sure she is. He also thinks she’s a great, incredible woman while still being aware of her shortcomings and weaknesses.

“I worry for her. She asked me to cut her hair. I didn’t want to, a woman her age ought to have at least shoulder length hair, but she made me cut it down to just about her ears. She looks younger, not how a lady her age should look.”

The biggest difference between the two versions is the role of Tobe in the stories. The original version barely makes any use of him, really only mentioning him in reference to the house they live in. He’s mentioned as letting people in to the house, being blamed for the stench surrounding the house after Homer is killed, and as doing the shopping for the house. He never speaks or shares his thoughts, and is only ever spoken to by Emily.

“And so she died. Fell ill in the house filled with dust and shadows, with only a doddering Negro man to wait on her. We did not even know she was sick; we had long since given up trying to get any information from the Negro. He talked to no one, probably not even to her, for his voice had grown harsh and rusty, as if from disuse.”

In my version Tobe is the narrator, so everything is from his perspective. I explore how he might possibly feel about Homer Barron, what he thinks about Emily, and his involvement in Emily’s crime. I go into detail about the murder, how Tobe was actually the one to poison him and how he assisted Emily in getting Homer into the bed, since she would not have been strong enough to do it on her own. This is a huge departure from the original version in which he is little more than a background character.

“I had a stew on the cooker for the whole day, and fresh made rice. Emily and the man sat at the table, talking quietly and intensely, sipping on sherry. The arsenic came in a small brown bottle and in the form of round pellets. The instructions said to mix with water and pour onto the bait, so I just poured some into Homer’s stew bowl and served them both, careful not to mix up whose is whose. I then sat down in the kitchen, eating my own supper while listening to their conversation. Listening as Miss Emily cried and Homer became more and more tired in his responses. He didn’t understand what she was saying by the end. After a time, he asked to lay down until he felt better and his headache was gone. As I helped him carry himself up the stairs to the guest bedroom, he spilled blood from his mouth and it made the steps slick beneath our feet.”

All in all, both versions are light on details surrounding what actually happened to Homer Barron and why he was killed, as well as his relationship with Emily, but my retelling provides a bit more context from Tobe’s point of view in the story. I felt that Tobe was an overlooked character who no one paid much attention to in the original, and I think my retelling also explains some of his behavior throughout the story, like him refusing to speak to townspeople and running away once Emily had died.

A Jury of Her Peers

Charles Tripoli                                                                                                            3/19/18

Part 1

A Jury of Her Peers

One day waiting around my hose for the sheriff to arrive, we had some business to attend to. I sat in the living room wile my wife worked in the kitchen when the team from town stopped to get me, the sheriff came running in to say his wife wished she would come too–adding, with a grin, that he guessed she was getting scary and wanted another woman along. So she had dropped everything right where it was.

“Martha!” I said “Don’t keep folks waiting out here in the cold.”

She again opened the storm-door, and us waiting for her in the big two-seated buggy.

We spent the ride not really talking about much we had gone up a little hill and could see the Wright place now. It looked very lonesome this cold March morning. It had always been a lonesome-looking place. It was down in a hollow, and the poplar trees around it were lonesome-looking trees. we were looking at it and talking about what had happened. The county attorney was bending to one side of the buggy, and kept looking steadily at the place as they drew up to it.

Once we got inside we went over to the stove. The women stood close together by the door. Young Henderson, the county attorney, turned around and said, “Come up to the fire, ladies.”

Mrs. Peters took a step forward, then stopped. “I’m not–cold,” she said. And so the two women stood by the door, at first not even so much as looking around the kitchen.

We talked for a minute about what a good thing it was the sheriff had sent his deputy out that morning to make a fire for them, and then Sheriff Peters stepped back from the stove, unbuttoned his outer coat, and leaned his hands on the kitchen table in a way that seemed to mark the beginning of official business. “Now, Mr. Hale,” he said in a sort of semiofficial voice, “before we move things about, you tell Mr. Henderson just what it was you saw when you came here yesterday morning.”

The county attorney was looking around the kitchen. “By the way,” he said, “has anything been moved?” He turned to the sheriff.

“Are things just as you left them yesterday?” Peters looked from cupboard to sink; from that to a small worn rocker a little to one side of the kitchen table.

“It’s just the same.” I said

“Somebody should have been left here yesterday,” said the county attorney.

“Oh–yesterday,” returned the sheriff, with a little gesture as of yesterday having been more than he could bear to think of. “When I had to send Frank to Morris Center for that man who went crazy–let me tell you. I had my hands full yesterday. I knew you could get back from Omaha by today, George, and as long as I went over everything here myself–”

“Well, Mr. Hale,” said the county attorney, in a way of letting what was past and gone go, “tell just what happened when you came here yesterday morning.”

“Yes, Mr. Hale?” the county attorney reminded.

“Harry and I had started to town with a load of potatoes,” I started “We come along this road,” I continued, with a motion of my hand to the road over which we had just come, “and as we got in sight of the house I says to Harry, ‘I’m goin’ to see if I can’t get John Wright to take a telephone.’ You see,” I explained to Henderson, “unless I can get somebody to go in with me they won’t come out this branch road except for a price I can’t pay. I’d spoke to Wright about it once before; but he put me off, saying folks talked too much anyway, and all he asked was peace and quiet– guess you know about how much he talked himself. But I thought maybe if I went to the house and talked about it before his wife, and said all the women-folks liked the telephones, and that in this lonesome stretch of road it would be a good thing–well, I said to Harry that that was what I was going to say–though I said at the same time that I didn’t know as what his wife wanted made much difference to John–”

“Let’s talk about that a little later, Mr. Hale. I do want to talk about that but, I’m anxious now to get along to just what happened when you got here.”

When I began this time, it was very deliberately and carefully: “I didn’t see or hear anything. I knocked at the door. And still it was all quiet inside. I knew they must be up–it was past eight o’clock. So I knocked again, louder, and I thought I heard somebody say, ‘Come in.’ I wasn’t sure–I’m not sure yet. But I opened the door– this door,” jerking a hand toward the door by which the two women stood. “And there, in that rocker”– pointing to it–“sat Mrs. Wright.”

Everyone in the kitchen looked at the rocker.

“How did she–look?” the county attorney was inquiring.

“Well,” I said, “she looked–queer.”

“How do you mean–queer?” As he asked it he took out a note-book and pencil.

My wife kept her eye fixed on me, as if to keep me from saying unnecessary things that would go into that note-book and make trouble.

I spoke guardedly, I didn’t like the pencil

We continued talking about this for a bit and we finely made our way upstairs to the scene there we saw the chalk outline of Mr. Wright and the rope used to kill him.

Everything was just the same as yesterday. We talked some more about what had happen when I got up here to see if he was alright.

And how when I asked Mrs. Wright what happened, how she didn’t know anything.

How someone slipped the rope around his neck and killed him.

I didn’t like being here, not just this room but this whole house, it’s a very dreary place.

When we finally returned to the kitchen the women looked a little shaken but its probably just this house

We had all the clues and evidence we needed but we just couldn’t find the motive

Charles Tripoli                                                                                                                     3/19


Part 2


There are a few differences in the 2 versions of this story. I changed the story for a 3rd person selective POV to a 1st person POV. I also changed who the story is fallowing form the women to the men using Mr. Hale as the character and narrator.


The biggest change this caused was the length of the story. We lost a large part of the story when the women talk about Mrs. Wright and who she was both before and after she got married. My story cut that out and focused more on the actual evidence talked about in the original. Because of this the story went form a longer story to just a 2 page story. That was something I wanted to make evident in my story. The men are focused on the crime itself they’re not really paying attention to little things like the bird cage.


I also changed what is actually said. Example I cut a lot of the beginning conversation in the kitchen that didn’t have to do with Mr. Hale directly for I felt that he wouldn’t necessarily pay too much attention to the women talk and give their opinions.


Another big change was the fact that without the women POV we lost the motive behind Mrs. Wright killing her husband. We only learned that when the men went upstairs in the origanl story when Mrs. Hale looked at the birdcage. Without that passage we were left with the same question the men had, “Why would Mrs. Wright kill him?” we didn’t have an answer because the people we were fallowing didn’t. All they had was the evidence found at the scene, and Mr. Hale’s testimony


In conclusion the way I wrote this story greatly impacted the progress of the investigation for the reader. Between the story being shorter, less detailed, and never finding a satisfying end it will make readers want to read the original to see what they missed out on .

Jorge Lopez – Anthology Project

Jorge Lopez

Professor Rosen

English 2001

22 March 2018

Part 1: Retelling

There Was Once


“There was once a poor girl, as beautiful as she was good, who lived with her wicked stepmother in a house in the forest.”

“Oh good choice on setting it in a forest, but talk about the forest, like what about it?”

“You mean like describe it?”

“Yeah, details.”

“There was once a poor girl, as beautiful as she was good, who lived with her wicked stepmother in a house in a large forest where the only other sounds were scurrying squirrels and screeching jays.”

“Good but there’s something missing…oh talk about what made them poor”

“Like their lifestyle?”

“Yeah that could work”

“There was once a poor girl, as beautiful as she was good, who lived with her wicked stepmother in a old and rugged house, with broken windows and old creaking floors, poorly lit rooms and barely any furniture to work with, deep within a large forest where the only other sounds were scurrying squirrels and screeching jays.”

“Ohhh I could almost imagine it, you know what’s missing though?”

“What’s that?”

“A description of the girl that’s what, can’t just say she’s beautiful and leave it at that.”

“I guess you’re right.”

“I know i’m right, now get to it!”

“There was once a poor girl, as beautiful as she was good, with her long blonde hair and dreamy blue eyes and having a smile that would light the room, sadly lived with her wicked stepmother in a old rugged house, with broken windows and old creaking floors, poorly lit rooms and barely any furniture to work with, deep within  a large forest where the only other sounds were scurrying squirrels and screeching jays.”

“This is coming along nicely! Keep going though, think outside the box, what haven’t we added yet that we could?”

“Hmmm, maybe we could talk about her background?”

“Yeah yeah I like that idea!”

“There was once a poor white girl, who grew up sheltered from the rest of the world, not knowing much beyond what she’s seen, and as beautiful as she was good, with her long blonde hair and dreamy blue eyes, having a smile that would light the room, sadly she lived with her wicked stepmother in a old rugged house, with broken windows and creaking floors, poorly lit rooms and barely any furniture to work with, deep within  a large forest where the only other sounds were scurrying squirrels and screeching jays.”

“Wow it’s like i’m right there, you’re doing a nice job describing it but I feel that you can use stronger words.”

“How so?”

“Like for example, when you talk about the stepmother you use wicked.”

“And? What’s wrong with that.”

“Nothing I just think you can take a different approach when mentioning the stepmother.”

“Alright i’ll give it a shot…There was once a poor white girl, who grew up sheltered from the rest of the world, not knowing much beyond what she’s seen, and as beautiful as she was good, with her long blonde hair and dreamy blue eyes, having a smile that would light the room, sadly she lived in an old rugged house with her stepmother who was cold and heartless because she herself had been abused in her childhood, this home, this poor broken down home, with broken windows and creaking floors, poorly lit rooms and barely any furniture to work with, resided deep within a large forest where the only other sounds were scurrying squirrels and screeching jays.”

“This is great! Nice job!”

“You like it?”

“Like? I love it!”

“Well I couldn’t have done it without you, you’ve been a big help, thank you so much!”

“No problem! It’s the least I can do for you.”

Part 2: Thinking about retelling

There Was Once

The story “There Was Once” by Margaret Atwood is a story that revolves around a conflict between the person telling the story and the person listening to it. This conflict is due to the listener consistently criticizing and suggesting ways to change the story to make it more politically correct, which eventually aggravates the storyteller and they try to resist being told how they should write their own story. My re telling takes a similar approach but instead of the listener suggesting changes that take away from the story, they suggest changes that add to it, making it grow into its original intent.

In my version of the story I made the listener encourage the storyteller, motivating the storyteller to add on to it in different ways to improve it. Pointing out where details were missing and helping with the brainstorming in the creation process. A very different approach of the original where the listener would critique everything the storyteller wrote, patronizing them for their choice of words and format. My approach led to the story flowing in a different direction and actually allowing it to grow whereas in the original version of the story it falls flat with the storyteller ended up with less than what he had to start with. Both stories share similar relationships but revolve around different themes, for mine I aimed on the theme of growth and teamwork. Which again is seen all throughout my version as more is added to the story. In the original it’s more themed around tension and conflict, which can be seen with the listeners attitude towards the storyteller as they share their distaste for how the story was coming along.

In summary both stories share a similar relationship between storyteller and listener where one writes and the other gives feedback, but both take a different approach in how they do it. My version revolves around the listener adding to the story in a positive way by approving the storytellers decisions and encouraging, leading to growth. In the original it’s the opposite where the listener contributes negatively to the story, causing problems between them and the storyteller and eventually causing the story to die.

Change of Narration in “A Rose For Emily”

Project Part 1 -> First Person (Emily’s Perspective) 

   One day, I decided to go to the arsenic and wanted to buy some rat poison. The rule in this town is that whenever someone buys poison, they have to say why they are buying it and for what they are going to use it. Due to the previous dilemmas of my father dying and me not feeling like myself, I Just stared at him without saying a word. He also was looking at me with his big round eyes, but in a few minutes he wrapped up the poison and decided to give it to me. Without any extra words, I left and started to walk down the street.I knew that people around me were all thinking that I bought this poison for myself and that I was going to kill myself. But those fools did not know a single thing. Throughout my whole life everything was chose for me, whether or not something happened depended on my father’s wishes. After my father’s death, the only thing of value that I have left is my family title. A family title that is honored throughout the town and no one dares to go against me.

   Before I never had a choice to choose on who to love or who to care for, but for some reason Homer Barron’ really stuck to me and now I feel like I need to keep him forever. This poison that is in my hands will make sure to keep him next to me until my death. This time, no one will choose for me or make decisions without my acknowledgement. This is something that I purely settled on myself. That same night I decided to invite Homer over, and while he was occupied I put some droplets for the poison in his glass. In a few minutes he started to feel unwell. At that time he was talking about how we can leave this old town and move to somewhere quite. We would have a happy family and a house. My eyes met his and I started feeling this emotion of regret. Maybe I should not have done this, maybe I should also drink this poison, to join him in the afterlife. Right as I thought that, Homer fell to the ground and ceased breathing. I brought him upstairs and put him on the bed. This was the best time to do this because, the word spread that he was leaving town. So nothing would be suspicious at all.I stopped letting people into my home, unless it was the servant who brought the food for me. Each morning and night I laid next to his body and treated him like a living person. Years went by and time came for me to also lie down next to him. Whenever the town find out that I have died, they will probably break through all the doors and  find Homer stuck to the bed after all these years. Whatever they will think about me won’t matter anymore, I was finally able to do something for myself without and third party helping me or forcing me. I guess you can say that our love was eternal.

Project Part 2-> Reasoning for changing perspective

Throughout the story of “A Rose for Emily” the narrator that is telling the story is not the protagonist but someone from the town or one of Emily’s servants. Due to this, the narrator cannot be too trustworthy because they are telling the story from their perspective and from what the think happens/happened. This is exactly why i chose to write a part of the story as a homodiegetic narrator. In other the narrator that takes part in the story itself. One of the biggest changes with using the narrator as the protagonist is that the ending and the start of the story can vary. In the original story Emily dies and then we get to imagine and see through the eyes of the town like we did throughout  the whole story what they found in her house. But with the part that i rewrote, the story cuts off after Emily’s death. I could have added like an imaginative ending, of how she tells us about what happened after her death, but that would seem highly absurd. Changing the perspective from the town to Emily, we are able to see and experience the story in more detail and a bit differently.

As stated before, most of the information we learn about Emily and her family are from the town folk or maybe even the servants that took care of Emily after her father’s death. Everything we hear are just speculations and opinions from others. For example when Emily buys the rat poison, the narrator says this “So the next day we all said,She will kill herself”. This opinion was plausible but incorrect. When I rewrote the story through Emily’s point of view, I made sure to import this part and show that no one actually knew anything about her plans and her feelings. They didn’t even have a clue that she will use the poison on Homer Barron. When looking through the Emily’s eyes, we get to actually feel this sense of lost hope and desperation. After her father’s death, she could not accept it for couple of weeks. Losing someone that you knew your whole life can have a huge toll on your body, mentally and physically. Even though she also felt some relief of losing the person who was controlling her life, she still felt some emotions of depression. When we are told the story, we are barely shown this side of her, everyone thinks that things will get better, she will get married and move on. Sadly something was different about her and no one was able to figure out what.

With the protagonist being the narrator, we can see most of the thoughts and ideas that come to her head. So we are not just sitting there wondering what would happen. We are actually also involved in the poisoning plot and know why she is buying the poison. This quote from the original story; “ the women mostly out of curiosity to see the inside of her house, which no one save an old man-servant – a combined gardener and cook – had seen in at least ten years”, left us with a huge gap. On the other hand it does drag us deeper into the mysterious plot without knowing all the details, but nothing is better than experiencing the story “first-hand” .

Going back to the different endings that I mentioned; there are tons of ways to end the story differently and uniquely. In this case because I chose to write the narration as the protagonist Emily, it changed the way I can end the story. Instead of seeing the full aftermath, we get cut-off after her death. We don’t really learn too much on what happens afterwards. By losing this ending, we gain mostly all of the thoughts of Emily. We can see clearly the plans that she has in stored, and the motives behind her actions. We don’t have to be guessing like the towns people on what will she do next. Then again while we gain all of that, we lose the suspense. So it all depends on how the reader would prefer for the story to be written or portrayed. Whether they want to all the facts to be kept hidden from them or be involved in the story and see everything through the eyes of the main protagonist.

The stories might vary with their endings and whether or not there is suspense, but in the end everyone gets the general idea on what the story is about and witness the acts that Emily commits. Once again it all depends on the reader, I prefer to actually be involved in the story fully, and be part of Emily’s train of thought. Also, while we imagine the story from the towns perspective, we get all the information from what they think and their opinions(somewhat bias). If the story would have been told as I portrayed it, then our experiences would have been a bit different.