English 10: Writing Portfolio


Catholic Memorial High School



Creative Writing  

Dear Mr. LE Carrè, I am a student at Catholic Memorial High School in West Roxbury Massachusetts. I’ve have recently come across the book of yours “The Spy Who Came In From the Cold”. I have yet to begin the book but have red skimmed through the first few pages. This book seems very interesting and I hope to start reading it soon.

Upon buying this book I read up a little bit on you. I noticed that you went to Sherborne School which is an all boy’s school. My school is also an all boy’s school and maybe if you came in you could share your thoughts on the matter. I feel the main reason that I was drawn to your work was because of the genre you write. Your books are spy and mystery novels and I love to read them.

In the few pages of your book that I have skimmed through so far I have come to recognize that Leamas is the main character. It is very interesting how you have the ability to get inside the characters head and make such inquiries as “ He’s waiting for the dark” “I know he is” as if you actually new what a real spies mindset would be in that situation. It’s as if you were once a spy yourself. Another interesting characteristic is that the book starts in a state of confusion and panic and jumps right into the spy business which most authors make you drag through the first few chapters before doing so.

Your book seems to be a great book so far and I believe it will be one of the better books I read. It is very unfortunate that it is not in my curriculum for class in that we are only reading historical British literature. Perhaps you could pay us a visit so that you can tell my class about this novel and your many others. I believe an author like you could inspire my teacher to put more contemporary literature into his curriculum. It would be greatly appreciated if you came to my school and on that note I must go.

Please write Back, Michael Munichiello






























The song Corn Rigs are Bonnie by Robert Burns had a large effect on the society he wrote to and British literature. This is so because Rob was a widely pronounced and highly respected poet. Due to this Roberts songs got around fast and are still read to many today, this gives him a large sphere of influence. This song opened many doors for all authors and influenced many.

This song was written for Annie Rankine. It is unknown exactly why this was written for Annie but it surely is. The mystery behind this is that Annie Rankine married a man by the name of John Rankine in the same year that Robert Burns wrote this poem. Although it is doubted that Robert Burns had relations with Annie it is an odd coincidence that she worked at a hotel (inn in New Cumnock) that Robert stayed at only 4 years after this poem was written.

The song mainly speaks of a woman named Annie who Robert meets on “an unclouded night”. After meeting this beautiful girl Robert asked her to meet her in “the corn rigs” (the modern translation for rigs are fields). The girl agreed and Robert met her there later that night. Robert goes on to say “I kent her heart was a’ my am, I loved her most sincerely, 0!, I kissed her owre and owre again”. This meant that later that night they met at the corn fields and “kissed” and probably shared sexual relations. Robert then tells of how he has had happy nights drinking and doing other things but none of them compare to the night at “the corn rigs” with Annie.

There are many reasons why this poem had a lasting affect on British literature and the culture. It affected the literature because it was probably rare for a song writer or poet to write about having sex or drinking. Due to the fact Robert Burns was a famous poet this probably opened the door and gave the ok to other poets to do so. Also it must have had a large affect because of his influence on future authors. Robert Burns poems and songs are still read today and he has influenced many over the years.


























On February 2006 Paul Marcharch was found guilty of murder. It was October 15th, 2004 when Paul Margarch murdered his wife Tina in front of his 2 young daughters. Tina had met another man on a vacation to Swan Hill with a few lady friends. When Paul began to suspect something he started to record his wifes conversations. Paul felt his power in the relationship depleting and when he finally reached his breaking point he decided to do something about it.

The culprit said very little during trial but from the quotes given through the recorded telephone calls Paul may have had mixed motives. The woman seemed to have no intent in leaving him when she said "I've got everything I want here, I love my husband to death". The woman’s parents also said "All she wanted was to make things work" referring to her daughter about he marriage. Although the mans motives seem to have been provoked by his wife leaving him there is no evidence of such to be found at this point in the case says THE HERALD SUN.

Mr. Marhach although found guilty of the murder claimed that his wife provoked the attack. He said that he'd got in an argument with his wife and she picked up a knife and said “I =-= him and I enjoyed it”. He said this happened right before the incident happened. Paul also claimed that his wife put his 4 year old daughter on the phone with the man she was having and affair with and told her that it was he new daddy.

Please Don’t Kill Mommy! By Frannie Weinstein is about a man who murdered his wife. After murdering his first wife and not getting caught he remarried and murdered a second wife only this time getting caught. In both this book and Paul Margach’s case a man murders his wife in a struggle for power and leaves his children alone with no one to care for them. These are both heartbreaking stories which show the harsh reality of how much power in a relationship can mean to certain individuals.

In the end Paul Margarch killed his wife in an effort to keep the power in his marriage. Although his wife was not given the chance to leave him I’ll leave you to decide how much power he has came out of the situation with. Paul was faced with the decision of letting his wife leave him or going to jail for murder and in my opinion he made an irrational decision. This story truly does exemplify the meaning power holds to certain people.
































The English language is one that is always advancing and changing. Over the course of history words have been shortened starting with how we pronounce and use them and eventually how they are used in literature. Some may feel the shorter the language gets the better but I disagree, I believe the shorter our language gets the worse. I believe this because every time a word is invented or shortened we become a little further from the roots which brought us together as a group of people speaking a common language. Slowly and little by little we have pushed away from the roots form which our language started. The word “metamorphosis” has been a help to our language in that how it is spelled and pronounced has not been changed over the course of time nor has a “slang” term been invented to be used in place of the word. $ Metamorphosis is a fairly old word, according to www.etymonline.com it was born into literature in 1533. This site also states that metamorphosis is a Greek word. www.etymonline.com gives the words first definition as “change shape or form, especially by witchcraft”. In 1833 the word was put into a geological sense which classified a rock changed by heat or pressure as “metamorphic. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language Fourth Edition defines metamorphosis as “a marked change in appearance, character, condition, or function”. Merriam Webster’s Medical Dictionary on the other hand defines metamorphosis as “change of physical form, structure, or substance”. $ The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) agrees with www.etymonline.com in that the word metamorphosis was born in 1533. The OED describes the word as “the action or process of changing in form, shape or substance; esp. by magic or witchcraft. Later in 1548 the OED gives metamorphosis a new definition which is “a complete change in circumstances, condition, character of a person, of affairs”. The OED then grants metamorphosis’s birth as a scientific term in 1665 as “the change in form in animals and plants”.$ According to the OED a person by the last name More was the first to write metamorphosis down. He wrote this word down in “Debelle.Salem Wks. 929/1”. The sentence this word was born in was “Salem and Bizans sometimes two great townes..were…with a meruailouse metamorphosis, enchaunted and turned into twoo englishe men.” Famous poet George Elliot used the word in his poem “A Bede vi.” He said “an amount of fat on the nape of her neck, which made her look like the metamorphosis of a white sucking pig.” The OED only recorded 1 man using the word in the 1900’s, 1903 to be specific, the name is unknown but the book was “Starsburgers bot.” the book says “the various modifications which the primitive form has passed through constitutes its metamorphosis.”