TKAM #1: An Intro into the Novel

Before I get into the details of the novel, (TKAM stands for To Kill a Mockingbird, by the way in case you haven’t figured that out yet), I would like to say that I am actually very into this book. The author uses mildly advanced vocabulary, mostly due to the fact that this book is super old(1960, to be exact). I have absolutely no issues with the dialect or vocabulary, and the characters are all likable, which is something that I cannot stress the importance of enough when I read.

Harper Lee does an amazing job of making each character with two sides: their surface value or what the characters’ first impressions are and their deeper, hidden self. Take Atticus for example: He seems to be a fairly straightforward character, not particularly flat or overly dynamic, but he remains a sort of mystery for a while. Eventually, he does come out of his shell and evolve as a character(More on that another time).

Scout is a hardcore tomboy. Since most books from that era feature male narrators(Huck Finn, Lord of the Flies, Catcher in the Rye etc.), it’s kind of tough to tell. In fact, for the first half of chapters one through four, I wasn’t sure if she was male or female. She is a rebel to the core and it shows when she arrives at school.

Jem, the elder of the Finch kids, is like an older version of Scout except with more of a adventurous side. He definitely shows up as a dynamic character but his metamorphosis doesn’t begin until around chapter 10.

Last but not least Dill, the quirky, little man-boy who sort of pops up in Maycomb whenever the plot needs another ball to be thrown in the mix. He is an outsider at first, sort of alien to Jem and Scout, but they take him as one of their own. Eventually, Scout’s friendship with Dill escalates to a future wedding(Come on, it’s the 1930s and in the South, so it makes perfect sense).

So overall, I recommend this book to…….. Everyone. Yeah, if you haven’t ever seen, read or picked up this book, you’re missing out on something great. Please, don’t get used to positive reviews on books assigned in English class. Most likely, another positive review won’t come until I’m 1,001 years old.

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TKAM #2: Atticus’ Evolution

Since my last post, the novel has really gotten good. The plot has drastically changed from a very slow, not entirely focused flow, into a story better than almost any movie.

Jem and Scout go on a search to find out something interesting about their father that they can be proud to tell kids at school. Their finds are not quite what they were expecting. He can play the Jew’s Harp like it’s nobody’s business and “he can make somebody’s will so airtight can’t nobody meddle with it” These facts only serve to make Scout more ashamed of her father. However, a storm was brewing in Maycomb.

Atticus, who was previously a fairly flat and not very dynamic character has suddenly been the center of attention. When Jem and Scout see the “town pet”, a dog named Tim Johnson acting “mad”, they rush home to alert Calpurnia. Calpurnia, upon seeing how Jem described the dog’s behavior then phoned just about everyone in town, letting them know about the supposedly rabid dog. Heck Tate, Maycomb’s sheriff sees the dog, draws his gun and  does something surprising: rather than shoot it himself, he hands Atticus the rifle and after a short argument, Atticus takes the shot. It was a perfect shot and it seemed to surprise the kids a lot.

This abrupt and unexpected event serves to impress the kids and the reader as well. Our discussion this week on chapters ten through fourteen were focused highly on Atticus, mainly his impact on his children.

In our next discussion, I hope to touch on Boo Radley and his role in the story

Halfway….Sort of

If I were to say that I’ve been working hard on my project I’d be lying. In all honesty I have, unfortunately, made little to no progress. Procrastination is one of my weaknesses and I have been procrastinating for almost a month. I feel a passion for my project but I lack the conviction to push myself forward. The problem with school is having to juggle homework from multiple classes. I’m not making excuses, but planning ahead has never been one of my strengths.

Anyway, rather than dwell on the past, I feel that I should plan for the future. If I can manage to get myself prepared I may be able to get back on track. So I propose a two-week plan to get back on track.

Week One:

  • Day 1: Advertise
    • Place posters
    • Create Social Media Accounts to monitor traffic
  • Day 3: (If I have received word from my flyers):
    • Meet with a volunteer
  • Day 5: Meet with more volunteers(Hopefully)
  • Weekend(Days 6/7):  Edit and meet with volunteers

Week Two:

  • Day 1: Advertise More
    • Announcements
  • Day 2: (With more volunteers)
    • More interviews
  • Days 4/5: Editing and/or Volunteers
  • Weekend(Days 6/7): Editing and/or Volunteers

If my two-week plan manages to get me back on track, I will have to remain diligent from that point out. The only thing that could cause this plan to fail is either me procrastinating or a lack of volunteers. My hope is that I will have at least five volunteers and 10+ would make my year. By my next post, I should have made some actual progress, but only time will tell.