Dreaming Novel Things: Who Were You in English Class?

dreamingnovelthingsDreaming Novel Things is a feature in which I discuss book related subjects, but in a creative way. I’ll use interviews, narratives and lists to talk about book trends, book opinions and bookish matters. If you have any book related subjects you’d like to see me discuss just leave me a comment below!

So I’ve been preparing for my high school reunion which is coming up in… seven years and I was reminiscing the good old days in English class. The people in that class were definitely characters and are burned into my memory as types (I know that sounds bad); for example– the know it all type, the couldn’t care less type and the crack a joke every minute type. Then I started thinking about who I was to my class mates, did I fit into a type? So I made a handy dandy guide to figure it out, scroll down if you want to know who you were in English class. (But be prepared, you may not like what you see).

hermione grangerThe Know it All Type:  This person is often mistaken for obnoxious but this is an unfair accusation. This person CAN’T HELP THEMSELVES. The moment a book is assigned this person reads it using sticky notes on every page, types up their notes to further analyze them and has the essay done all before the class discussion day so they can answer every question the teacher asks and even ones they didn’t ask. This person can usually reference any book at the top of their head and if they can’t pull it from the top of their head they have it written down somewhere in a notebook that they carry on their person. They know about all the small irrelevant facts of their favorite authors and their hand is always the first one up when class begins. Often before the teacher has even begun talking.

ron weasleyThe Couldn’t Care Less Type: This person didn’t care why the author wrote the curtains blue. They didn’t care if there were several themes to be found in the novel. They read it and that was it. They either enjoyed it or not but they didn’t look for hidden meanings because they DIDN’T CARE. During class discussions they roll their eyes because they think it’s ridiculous to assume that because the author made the curtains blue that the author was ‘really’ trying to symbolize depression. They think the author made the curtains blue, TO MAKE THE CURTAINS BLUE. They might read for enjoyment not for any literary insight. They are often seen at their desk staring into space, lost in thoughts about lunch.

thCAOVTCU0The Make it Up as You Go Type: This here is our procrastinator. It’s not that they don’t like reading it’s just that they are always putting it off to do something else. So by the time the class room discussion rolls around they are left struggling to say something that makes sense. They usually try to repeat what someone else has said but try to rephrase it so that it sounds like a different opinion. For instance, one person could say “I thought C.S. Lewis used Aslan to represent Jesus Christ in the Christian religion.” Then our ‘make it up as you go’ type person would say, “I almost think Lewis was giving us subtle hints with that character Aslan. It almost seemed that he was referencing the Christian religion.” Then our person will nod eagerly to emphasize their point.

To be honest with you guys, I was the make it up as you go type. I’m a HUGE procrastinator and for some reason when someone said that I HAD to read a book, I didn’t want to read it. That led to a lot of awkard moments of me pulling things to say out of thin air. (I pulled it off though)! 😉

Who were you in English class?  Share it below and happy reading!

29 thoughts on “Dreaming Novel Things: Who Were You in English Class?

  1. It is sad to admit but i was The couldn’t care less type most of the time. I hated depicting what everything means and why some authors did this or that. YAWN. I just like reading the books. Although, actually it all depends on what grade i was in and how motivated i was. I had my know it all moments :)Great topic for discussion!

    • No shame a lot of the time I fit into that category as well. Sometimes I wonder if English teachers make up things about novels that the author never intended us to analyze. YAWN is right! Thanks for reading! 🙂

  2. I’m not really sure what type I am. I read and enjoy the readings, but I never answer unless the teacher calls me. Or everyone else is dumbfounded and I will just say the answer out of the blue without even raising my hand. I also answer in my mind sometimes. I just don’t like speaking up in general, but I do like the class. I listen to what people have to say and all that. I just like keeping to myself.

  3. I was the Know it All type, but there were enough awkward situations where my enthusiasm was met with a wall of apathy from my classmates that I learned to keep it to myself. Now I have my blog – where I will eventually write again as soon as my day job leaves me some energy in the evening.

    • I really wish I was that type, because I do like being able to answer questions with confidence but the procrastinator in me would never allow it.

      Tell me about it! I come home so tired now (hence the late night posts). I am looking forward to your posts though, you always give me concepts to mull over. Thanks for reading! 🙂

  4. I mostly didn’t like the idea that I HAD to read a book. However, after I read I ended liking many of them. I’m not sure which type would that be cause I read all the books, but I didn’t know the tiniest details and I definitely wasn’t the first one to raise my hand (I was very shy in high school).


  5. I have to say I don’t really fit into any of these, maybe I am a slight combination of the three? I didn’t take English any further than was compulsory because I hated it. I love writing and I love books but I couldn’t stand English. Odd but true. I was interested in the books we were reading and analysing and I would always do the homework religiously but I wasn’t interested in the class at all. 😛

  6. Hahaha! I was definitely cross between all three, actually, but in general they averaged out to the Couldn’t Care Less type … Basically, I would act like I couldn’t care less until people started saying stupid stuff, and then I would raise my hand and blurt out the correct answer. This was usually the case whether I had read the book or not (I mean, some things really can/should just be common sense). By the time I got all the way through college (I took a lit class senior year), I was definitely firmly on the side of the Make it Up As You Go type … I never read any of the assignments, and if I was called on I usually had a reasonable answer based on other random knowledge. That got me into trouble with Hamlet though, because I had just visited Hamlet’s castle a couple months prior, and my BS-skills kept mixing up what I knew about the play and what I knew from actual history/setting. It didn’t go over too well …

  7. This is such a great blog topic, Lindsey! And as I’m reading through the comments here, I’m chuckling at how it seems like all of us have fit into the “couldn’t care less” or “make it up as you go” types at some point or other. The “TO MAKE THE CURTAINS BLUE” is perfectly on point – I had a 9th grade English teacher who kept telling us that, as a general rule in literature, pink means insanity and all such rubbish. Personally, I went through a succession of all three phases in order: Couldn’t Care Less Type in middle school, Make it Up as You Go type in high school, and finally went full-fledged Hermione Insufferable Know it All in college (but I suspect that’s because I enjoyed the company and the material so much). Of course, as I anyone would argue, being in school in general requires a certain degree of BS’ing XD
    Great post, Lindsey! 😀

    • Thanks Lauren! That English teacher doesn’t sound like a great one. I think it’s a completely ridiculous assumption that the majority of authors use the same rules and meanings in literature. That’s why we read, because of the variety and differences in books! Sometime the author made the curtains blue to symbolize depression but sometimes another author made the curtains blue because it goes well with the sofa!

      I envy that you got to the know it all stage. I loved English but the procrastinator in me wouldn’t allow me to read books before classroom disscussion days, therefore I was forever scrambling. I’m sure you would make Hermione proud! Thanks for reading! 🙂

  8. Hahahah these types are too funny! I would say that I’m probably a mix of all three as well…I definitely always read the books and give myself a lot of time on essays (partially because I’m a nerd and partially because I’m a terrible BSer), but I usually only talk when no one else is talking and the teacher looks distressed or when I’ve given something a lot of thought and decide to share. Sometimes I think teachers overanalyze books (an author can’t really account for EVERYTHING they write, can they?) and sometimes I just feel like I have nothing intelligent to share so I just BS it as best as I can(;

    • Haha! I really wish I was like you but the procrastinator in me would never allow it. (No, I don’t think an author can be accountable for EVERYTHING they write. I think that sometimes, the curtains are just blue). 😉 Thanks so much for sharing, I appreciate it! 🙂

  9. I was a good student but I didn’t really like talking much or reading the books I was told to read. I read 40 pages of Huck Finn for class but one time I answered discussion questions I had no idea about because nobody else in class was talking and I thought the teacher would slay us all, haha. If I liked the book or had more assignments that required me to actually read the whole thing, I didn’t mind answering questions and stuff.

  10. Hmmm. I am a little bit of #1 and #2. While I don’t exactly write full essays and read the book the first day it was assigned, I do partake in class discussions (though I do get shy sometimes) and remember most of the books I read. But… just between you and me, if a book bores me, I will NOT try hard in analyzing the story and find hidden themes and symbolism. So yeah, it all depends on the story I’m reading.

    • Interesting and don’t worry, your secret is safe with me! 😉 For some reason when a teacher told me to read a book, it seemed impossible to read, even though I enjoyed that same book later on in life. Oh well. Thanks for reading! 🙂

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