English 10: Writing Portfolio

 

Catholic Memorial High School

 

2006-2007

   
   
   
   
   
Research  
   
Creative Writing  
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
  Dear Eoin Colfer,

You were one of the people that inspired me to write. So far, I’ve written a few fanfictions, but
I’m trying to write a book using some detials of Japanese fables. Have you ever read some
“fanfiction” based on your work? Some of it seems a little crazy. Hard to find a good fic among all
the…unique ones. I run a fanfiction site with some of the best fics in the internet.

Since you wrote your books, the Artimis Fowl series, perhaps you could give me some advice on how to
do it. I especially love the ‘LEP-recon’ joke. My dad, Richard Seltzer, is my main editor and
helper. Perhaps you’ve read some of his own writing? And your advice to go through this book would
be good as well. My dad means well, but he’s easy to confuse. My personal favorite line from your
last book is, “What is a civilian doing giving tactical advice?” It was funny in my mind. These
days, ‘civilians’ know as much about war as some generals.

As a side note, it would be an honor for you to come to my school, Catholic Memorial, and talk about
how you got the ideas your books. If you can’t, that’s understandable. Just don’t let the Artemis
Fowl series lay as is, though. I’d love to see how it develops further. May Artemis, Butler, and the
others grow as characters…if possible at this point.

Best Wishes,
Timothy Seltzer

PS: Didn’t know you were a preformer until I saw your site. Very nice backround songs in it.
   
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When you hear about home invasions, you expect it’s some desprite man trying to find something to
pawn off. Or maybe a vengeful person trying to ‘off’ their hated advisary. But there have been cases
where the person is a total sicko, who kills for the sheer pleasure of killing.

In the Notebook of an English Opium Eater, written in 1854, one man had apparently enjoyed causing
various sorts of terror and mayhem. Named John Williams, his most famous chaos of the time was in
1812, in one town he killed all but two households, and watched in amusement as the survivors
started accusing eachother, or tried to find various ways to survive. To add to his amusement, he
killed the survivors one by one until they began killing eachother, and watched with a smile. In one
of his many slaughters, he was too busy enjoying the pleasure of watching the scared people to just
take some of the money from the house and run. He was then captured, and just smiled at his
captures. Some people say this sort of man was one of a kind, but things change over time. As
generations go by, there’s always someone similar, someone who just might go even improve on the old
ideas.

The ever famous Charles Manson case is just that. Yes, the man who made a cult of young women
devoted to feirce serial killings. Known as the Tate-Leblanca murders, the man causing it all
enjoyed every death, and made sure that some he would see personally. Hell, during his trial an
anonomous witness said “Manson doesn’t know about love…love is not his trip. Death is his trip.”
Charles himself said that, “My trip is that death is the greatest form of love.” Yet the cult he
formed didn’t just disapear after he was put in jail. One of his girls, named Lynette Fromme, took
over the cult in his absence. Though the cult wasn’t quite as effective or sadistic, they did try
once to kill Gerald Ford as the ‘ultimate challenge’. Where John Williams had done everything alone,
and caused blood to spill wherever he roamed, Charles Manson had made a sort of legacy. He may have
gotten a kick out of the fact that his group was still active after he was away. That his ‘family’
still was active.

Nobody can say that human nature doesn’t have such sadistic tendancies. People have made and watched
such movies as Friday the Thirteenth, Nightmare on Elm Street, and Saw. Despite what people will
say, they are fasinated by the brutality, and sheer ‘wrongness’ of some of these stories. A man
capturing various people, and having them go through a twisted contest to see who lives? A child
born from a raped nun, who grows up to become an estranged, sadistic joker who kills children? A
little boy who supposedly drowned, then came back to unleash his wrath on the world as per his
mother’s dieing words? The old days of gladitorial matches show humanity’s dark nature. The most
civilized nation of its time, Rome, spent much of its free time watching enslaved of any sex, race,
and species primally fight for survival. Even little kids have sometime similar to this, by
purchasing two different colors of ants, putting them in connected ant farms, and watching them as
they fight. For you see, there is nothing more mind numbing than the idea that you are god-like, in
one way or another. And being able to cause death with ease, sometimes trying to make it more
interesting, is as close as some sicko’s will get to god-hood.






http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Manson
The Note Book of An English Opium Eater by Thomas de Quincey, copyright 1854
 

   
   
   
   
   
   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


America has gained words from many languages, as well as slangs. Some people would say that the
language spoken most, ‘English’, is not entirely similar to England’s version. That the way those in
the United Kingdom have learned to speak is similar, yet still can be difficult for the US to
understand at times. People from many countries have come and spread their culture, and their
languages. Spanish, German, Russian, Japanese, Americans know how to say at least one word from
every major language. But is this a blessing, or a curse? Do those words that come into the United
States help our language, or hurt it? The word ‘kamikaze’ has, that is for sure.

From Japan, the word kamikaze, is a compound word. Kami, the first word, means spirit. It could be a
divine spirit, or the spirit of a person, but it still is a spirit. Kaze, on the other hand, means
wind. The absolute first time the compound word ‘kamikaze’ was used, it described the typhoons that
destroyed Kublai Khan’s first invasion fleet in 1274. (The Chrysanthemum and the Sword by Ruth
Benedict) The second time, ironically, was when the same Mongul leader decided to attack with a much
stronger force, was held back at the beaches, and the typhoons wiped out their invasion force again.
(Samurai, an Illustrated History by Mitsou Kure) The first time in English it was used, however, was
the definition of suicidal Japanese pilots that were all too common in the days of war. There were
in total four subsections to the Kamikaze Special Attack Force: Shikishima, Yamoto, Asahi, and
Yamazakura. (Cracking the Zero Mystery, How the United States Learned to Beat Japan’s Vaunted World
War II Fighter Plane by Jim Rearden) The pilots were called ‘kamikaze’ by their people because these
men decided to sacrifice their ‘spirit’ to the ‘winds’.

Yet how has this word made the transition into English? The Random House Unabridged Dictionary calls
it “a person or thing that behaves in a wildly reckless or destructive manner”. On the other hand,
the American Heritage Dictionary calls it "(Slang) An extremely reckless person who seems to
court death.” No matter what, the word has come to mean ‘nearly’ getting oneself killed, yet somehow
managing to survive. A dead definition, from the OED, said that it meant a totally suicidal person
with no sense of self preservation, and that it’s meaning changed after 9/11. With so many people
calling the attack a ‘kamakaze strike’, and making parallels with the Japanese pilots, the
government decided to officially call the attack ‘a suicide bombing’. Now, they may have done this
to eliminate any possible confusion about who was responsible for the attacks, but that had made the
word become less confusable. Now people can describe reckless drivers, or seemingly insane athletes
in a simpler way. One word: kamikaze.

There is, of course, a less widly known meaning. A special kind of mixed cocktail has gained the
name ‘Kamikaze’, and the ingrediants are as follows: 2 oz. vodka, 2 oz. Triple Sec, and 2 oz. Rose’s
Lime Juice. (http://www.digitalbartender.com/mixed-drink/mixed_drinks/Kamikaze)



 

   
   
   
   
   
   
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