English 10: Writing Portfolio


Catholic Memorial High School



Creative Writing  
  Dear Sue Townsend,

Why did you drop out of school at the age of 15? Why did you volunteer to work in a Children's
Adventure Playground? How did you become blind in 2001? My name is Jeff Tagger, and I attend
Catholic Memorial, which is located in Boston, MA. I am in the 10th grade. My English teacher is Mr.
McGonegal and we are studying British Literature this year. I was just wondering if you could come
to our class and speak to us about your life and some of your great works.

I did some research on your life and found out some interesting facts. First, I saw that you had 4
children and 5 grandchildren. I like this fact because I would like to have children someday. Next,
I saw that you dropped out of school at the age of 15. I was wondering why you decided to drop out
of school. I also saw that you joined the Writer's Group at the Phoenix Art Centre in 1978.
What made you join the Writer's Group? Lastly, I noticed that your first play was called,
“Womberang”. What do you like about writing plays rather than writing poems or novels?

I see that you have written many novels in your lifetime. Some of your books include: Queen and I,
Number 10, Ghost Children, and Queen Camilla. Your most successful book was called the Secret Diary
of Adrian Mole. I really enjoy this book because it is a series of many books. Also, it is written
in diary form. Adrian Mole was Britain's best loved and bestselling book. This book explains
the troubled life of an adolescent boy. This boy writes in his diary everyday. This is a way for him
to get rid of his stress. Adrian Mole was televised. This series is humorous and is realistic.

The students in my class would be very upset if you were not to come to our school to speak to us
about your life and your great works. I hope to hear from you in a couple of weeks or so. My
classmates and I look forward to seeing you at Catholic Memorial.

Jeff Tagger









Authors can share with us their innermost feelings and emotions in the letters they write. Take a
letter by Joseph Addison for example. Joseph Addison was born (May 1, 1672–June 17, 1719) in
Milston, Wiltshire. He was an English politician and an essayist. In a letter he wrote to one of his
best friends in 1698 in his room at his house, he shares with us his deepest feelings. He states
that he has seemed to have forgotten himself and is lost in the world. He says he needs to find
himself again. It seems as if Joseph Addison is in a time of confusion and is caught up in a
whirlwind of commotion. The biggest revelation this letter teaches us is that Addison needs to
re-evaluate himself and get himself together because he feels he isn't the same person as he
used to be.

When this letter was written, he was in a state of hopelessness and confusion. He couldn't
find himself and wrote poems and letters to get rid of his stress. In these letters, Addison shares
his emotions and lets his friends know about everything happening in his life. He relies heavily on
his friends to be there for him when he needs them the most. a quote he had in one of his letters
about friendship and how important it was to him, he said, " I may have a hundred friends; and,
if my fee be two guineas, I shall, by relinquishing my right lose two hundred guineas, and no friend
gain more than two; there is therefore no proportion between the good imparted and the evil
This particular letter written by Addison reveals a lot about him. He says he is lost and is in a
whirlwind of confusion. He says that we shouldn't get caught up in other people's business
and just worry about ours. He says this because he inveighed against others and that’s when he began
to lose track of himself. While caught up in the world of everyone else, he lost himself and the
things important to him in his life. The main message in this letter written by Joseph Addison to
his friend is to inform his friend of his news and to tell his friend not to do the same thing he

One thing that Addison tells us in this letter is that he loves to write poetry and read it as
well. a key quote he says in this letter is, "I should not be induced to place poetry written
in our native tongue before the eyes of you, who do not deter all the rest from such undertakings
any the less than you shall have stimulated them by your favor." this is one of many quotes
stated by Addison about his love for poetry. It seems that Addison uses poetry to relieve his stress
and overflow his readers with emotions he experienced.

Addison is a well-educated person who is very interesting. Richard Steele, Addison’s best friend,
is very similar to Addison. They both write letters back and forth to each other and share their
feelings and talk about their friendship. They both produced a book called CATO. Addison style of
writing books and letters is very different. Addison tends to insinuate when he writes stories but
seems to open up when writing letters to friends and loved ones.

















The English language is very similar to us:it is growing over time. Many words from other languages
are finding its way into the English language. Many dispute whether this will help or hurt our
world. I think this will help our world.

There are many definitions for the word: Hysterical. When I hear this word, I think of it as meaning
funny. When I looked it up in different dictionaries, I saw that there were a variety of definitions
for this word. For example, in New Webster's Dictionary, it defines the word as: "a fit of
uncontrolled laughing". I looked up hysterical in another dictionary; The American Heritage,
and it said that the word means:” having or prone to having hysteria." I looked up this word in
another dictionary, the Oxford American Dictionary and its definition was:"suffering from
hysteria". As you can see, all these definitions are very simple to understand and will help
the world.

The Oxford English Dictionary is home to hundreds of thousands of words in the English language. I
went there to look for some definitions of my word. One definition I found was:” of or pertaining to
hysteria". This word originated in around 1615. Another definition is:” characterized by
convulsive excitement or emotion such as marks hysteria, morbidly emotional or excited". This
word came up in year of 1704. The last definition I found was:" full of excitement or
emotion." This word popped in around 1648. These simple definitions are easy to learn and will
definitely help this world.

I asked some people I knew if they knew what the word hysterical means. The first person I asked
about this word was Marc Campea and asked him what the first thoughts that came to his mind
were:" South Park" and "Family Guy". I asked another person; Antonio Pinto and
he said "me" and "Family Guy". The third person I asked was my mom and she said
"Comedians" and "Laughing". When asking these people about their thoughts, they
didn't even hesitate to say what came to mind. 70% of the people I asked knew what this word
meant This shows how the English language is very easy to learn and adapt to. I also asked a couple
of foreign language speakers about what came to mind when they heard this word. One person I asked
was Louis Santiago. I asked him if this word was hard to learn and his response was “was not that
hard, I just got used to hearing it". I asked him to define it and he said “as meaning
something funny". I asked another person about this word, Mike Stevens, and he said “It was
very easy for me to learn this word". The last person I asked was Carlos Garcia and he said
that the word was easy to learn and means "being funny". I asked him to use it in a
sentence and his response was:" The kid is hysterical in class". If foreign language
speakers can define this word and use it in a sentence, then it is obvious that English is easy to
learn and that simple words like this one are helping the world.

There are many reasons why I think foreign words are helping our world. The main reason is because
America is filled with thousand upon thousands of people who come from a different country. We are a
diverse country, and many of the people who live here speak a different language other than English.
So if we can get everyone to speak the same language, it would make America a much easier place to
live in.