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Sunday, September 15, 2013

Week 2 - Stories: There's no such place as Bedford Falls and Would You Like to Recconnect? - Text: A Cat, a Hat, and a Piece of String by Joanne Harris

Read: Chapter Seventeen in Mooring Against the Tide,“Character”, and Chapter Twenty-Five “Workshopping a Story in the First Person”
From Harris text:
There’s No Such Place as Bedford Falls
Would You Like to Reconnect?
Please make sure you use paragraphs, correct spelling, and correct punctuation.
Did you care about the characters?
How did the writer make you as a reader feel that way?
Was there enough dialogue? Was it convincing?
Did the characters seem rounded to you? Flat?
What did the writer do that drew you to the characters?
Did she do anything that pushed you away?
Is there anything you might change about the way you write about characters in your own stories now?

           Christmas in September huh. I don't know about that...mostly September is associated with school so reading a Christmas story is kinda out of the season but who can't love Christmas? There is No Such Place as Bedford Falls is a story about the Christmas spirit and about not losing it. The plot's very simple and the character is too. Like the other stories before, There is No Such Place as Bedford Falls is also written in first person point of view. I'll be honest, though the writing of the story is good and the essence of the story is great - especially the moral. The shallowness of the story is what drives me away. Like the whole story circles around Christmas and trying to make the season work, trying to show people the true meaning of the holiday. But there's just a point where the story seems too cheery and you want more conflict - this is how I felt when I read this story.
            I do care about the character of this story but not as much as Raleigh's characters or  Morgan's characters. The reason to this is maybe cause the story is too cliche and I know it so well that it has lost it's flavor with me - I've watched and read too many tales about keeping the Christmas spirit. There was definitely enough dialogue to convey how the character felt. The character felt Flat to me, like his personality was only his joy about Christmas and nothing else. I guess what I could take away from this story is the moral not to have a cliche plot that way the reader will see the story as something fresh.
            Would You Like To Reconnect? Now that's a story I definitely would love to reconnect to. Definitely to us, the younger generation, this is the type of story we'd more likely connect with - something to do with technology. As a fellow twitter user and fanatic, I can totally relate to the main characters. @Llamadude and @MTnestgirl were round characters with really flushed out personalities. Also their relationship as mother and son intensifies their character even more. @MTnestgirl is the narrator, as this story is also written in first person - like the rest. She talks of her son and how she connected to him even when he left for college. Oh the wonder of technology - why just from a click of a button, you can send a message all over the world and back again! @MTnestgirl longed to be close with her son like any mother would - she wanted to be with him even when he's far away. Twitter fulfilled that purpose - it became a way for her and her son @Llamadude to keep in touch and stay "together". She knew what he was upto and he knew what she was up to. From their feed they could read what was happening in the other's life and this way it's almost as if being there.
         I cared a lot for these characters. All throughout the story  I felt how the mother would have felt - all that yearning, that loneliness, and emptiness inside. It's what one feels when they've lost something they know they've never get back. I think at some point in our lives we attain this feeling of forlornness. The connection between the mother and son was strong, you can see it from the dialogues they had on twitter and how much they came up in each other's feed. I love how Joanne Harris thought to write a story involving technology and the love of a mother for her son. It's a good story that shows the importance of parents which, trust me, the younger generation needs these days. Nothing pushed me away in this story. This was the most page-turning tale I've read from all the previous readings. What I could bring from this to my writing? Definitely the element of connection. I want to write about a topic in which my readers will be able to relate to and want to reconnect again and again with my story, even after it's long past it's prime. Because the true value of a story is known by how much the story is being told, even after the author has long gone.


  1. Nic, I have to confess that it was the Reconnect story that made me think this would be a fun textbook this term. I went with exactly your reasons: students would feel like someone was talking about their world.

    I like that you’re talking about the flatness of the character in the Christmas story. This person does not change, and as a reader, that can be frustrating. It’s like, okay, I’ve read all this and you’re still stuck?

    You mention the realism of the dialogue and how that helped you to connect emotionally.

    Re Mooring chapers: that’s a very detailed response. You’ve read them closely. It’s okay by me if you want to write shorter in future, but I’ll read longer ones too if you prefer. I’m just trying to persuade folks to read the text.

    ZL--funny, the other blogs make no difficulty about me owning my identity on Wordpress, but this one does.

  2. it's weird that this one does so just use the Name/URL option. I'm sorry that this does that to you >_<