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  The Printing Press is the English Department Newsletter. Its purpose it to inform major and minors about programs and activities within the department. The Press will inform readers of activities and opportunities outside of Monmouth College. For any questions or submissions, contact,, or

In This Issue:

And Now a Word from Our Majors

by Fannetta Jones

Every issue of the Printing Press is chocked full of different articles and pieces that I'm sure you all are MORE than interested to read. But, sometimes it's nice to have a piece that's a little more relevant to You, right? So, with that in mind, we have decided to spotlight one of our very own English majors so that you all can see the type of work that is being done in the department.

Last semester, we highlighted two talents from the English department, and this semester will not break the chain. The majors that we are spotlighting this semester are Mr. Alex Roling and, myself, Fannetta Jones.

Alex is an English major and a junior. He is also an RA. This just goes to show that we English nerds are quite multi-faceted. When given the opportunity to present his work, he wanted to show more than one piece, showing the passion he has for writing. (Hopefully this is something we have all picked up by now.)

With that in mind, it is now time to showcase his talent. Here is a poem by Alex Roling titled "Handful of Sand."

Take a handful of sand,

and let it seep through your fingers into the blowing wind,

and watch them all as possibilities, as lives you could have lived.

In the end just one grain will be in your palm.

And it is small.
And it is fine.
And it is yours.

And in the end it is mostly out of your hands.


The second talent we are featuring, as I mentioned earlier, is none other than me, Fannetta Jones. I am a junior as well as an English and Secondary Education major. I too am an RA, as well as a Scot Ambassador and a variety of other invovlements on campus. I have always enjoyed reading and writing for as long as I can remember and love the opportunity to share my work with others.

So, without further adieu, here is my poem, titled "Soulmates (For Tynan)."

Met you at a convenient time
In an inconvenient place.
Met you when right was beginning
To go wrong
And you had the perfect song
To ease the pain.
You bonded to me in a way
That none had done before.
And Love?
Love ran too fast in her stiletto heels.
Tripped and fell all over us
Bringing us together
Despite how much we wanted it.
You brought out the "me"
That no one else could see
And helped me to find myself
Sitting on the shelf
Between the pages of
Dusted old journals
And poem books that I was too afraid to read
For what they would tell me.
Your eyes were the most beautiful
Shade of brown
That could become the most true blue
I had ever seen.
Standing at 5'9
You were living proof that
Big things...
Come in small packages.
Because you...
You had the biggest heart I had ever seen.
Tied to your sleeve with a
White string
Because you wanted to make sure you wouldn't lose it.
You set my soul free
To float amongst
Ocean blue skies
And the greenest pastures
I could find.
I was searching for my kindred spirit
And on that fateful day
My spirit found yours
And produced
Technicolor rain showers and
Guitars songs played
Offkey but in tune.
Because Baby,
When our souls mate
We produce
Explosions of Gospel proportions
Because we know that those moments
Are sacred.
Too precious to be laid down
In the textbooks of our future generations,
This love should be weaved
Into the pink of our eyelids
So that it is the first thing
We rise to in the morning
And the last thing we see before bed.
And even on the brightest day
The sun has to pass
Through what we've created
To truly understand
What it means to Shine...
Let's weave our love
Into the lyrics of
Offbeat Indie songs
So that even the loners know
What they have to look forward to.
This kind of connection
Is more than something for Hallmark
To paste into greeting cards.
This is what happens when
Stars dance.
When the moon smiles.
And when souls mate...


                   Attend the Tale…

               By Alex Nall

When the Monmouth College Theatre Production of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street went up two weeks ago, audiences got a great experience of watching Monmouth students sing, dance and act their way through a bloody little love story in Monmouth’s very own Wells Theatre. What some people may have missed out on was the pre-show discussion “Pearls, Pies and Pics,” which was presented before the Sunday afternoon show. During this presentation, Monmouth College students Jonathon Snowdon, Derek Keist and the Head of the English Department, Rob Hale discussed the differences between the theatrical and film adaptations of the play, the time period in which the play occurs and the novel on which the play is based upon.
         Jonathon Snowdon (Who also played the “Judge” in the play) gave audiences definite examples of the distinctions between the 1979 Broadway production starring George Hearn and the 2007 film adaptation helmed by Tim Burton. The best thing about the film, said Snowdon, was Burton’s “traditional use of black, white and grays on his characters and settings” which emphasized the dreary nineteenth- century London scene in which the play takes place.

        Derek Keist then talked about nineteenth century London and the horrible living conditions that people lived in. The streets of London ran with “rats, garbage and urine” and made the city a sickly place to live in. Keist implied that Sweeney lyricist and composer Stephen Sondheim used historical elements such as this to write notable songs such as “No Place Like London” and “The Worst Pies in London.” Keist also talked about the class struggle and forward movement of the Industrial Revolution that lay underneath the background of the play, giving reason for some of the characters in the play to be as vengeful and mad as they appear to be.

        It was Professor Hale’s lecture that closed the pre-show discussion. Hale concentrated on a very little known aspect of the play, the novel on which it is based, A String of Pearls. The novel was first published in serial form by various authors from 1846-47. Published as a romance in the format of a penny-dreadful, which would tell a certain part of a story and then end with a cliffhanger, readers would have to go out and buy the next issue to see what happens in the story.

        Although the main story of the novel is the same in that a demonic barber slits the throats of his victims and makes them into meat pies, the differences between the novel and the stage adaptation are the character motivations and roles that have been altered. Rather than seeking revenge on those who have helped in his wife’s death, like he does in the play, Todd is simply a murderous barber who is evil for the purpose of being evil. He kills his innocent victims and bakes them into juicy meat pies with his accomplice Mrs. Lovett and his assistant, Tobias Ragg, who rather than being a sympathetic little boy who is suspicious of Todd, he is a vile child who goes mad halfway through the novel. The title comes from a gift received by Johanna Oakley on behalf of her missing lover Mark Ingestrie. Believing that Todd may be involved in Mark’s disappearance leads Johanna to disguise herself as a boy and work under Todd’s watch, leading to the discovery of Todd’s horrible secret:
"Ladies and gentlemen - I fear that what I am going to say will spoil your appetites; but the truth is beautiful at all times, and I have to state that Mrs. Lovett's pies are made of human flesh!" The novel ends on a happier note than the play does with Johanna marrying Mark and Todd and Lovett being killed for their mortal sins.

 It has been shown throughout the centuries how the character of Sweeney Todd shocks and rivets audiences. His story is one that has been adapted into various forms and even different types of stage productions, and captivates audiences through song, romance and bloody deaths. From the transformation he has undergone since his arrival on the literature scene in the mid-1800s, audiences know one thing, Sweeney’s tale- in book or theatre form- is not one to overlook.

               Thanks for the Memories!

                by Noelle Templeton

     It's time again to bid farewell to our seniors, and I am actually part of the bunch.  We are all headed to different places--grad school, back to high school, there is even a wedding or two in the near future--but no matter where we go from here, we will remember that we all came from the same place.

As part of The Printing Press tradition, I surveyed some of my fellow seniors for their parting words.  Here are some of their last sentiments.

Danny Weber

What was your favorite memory from your time at Monmouth?
Either having the whole class wear vests the last day of my final Willhardt class, even though he tried not to act surprised, or bribing Willhardt with Monopoly money in my ENGL 200 Research Paper on Twain. (I didn't know that was an option.)

How are you surviving your thesis?
spider diagrams and Printing Press surveys

Any favorite quotes from the past four years?
"black flack" (We don't know what that means either.)

Last words?
"I am content"

Laura Dumont

What was your favorite memory from your time at Monmouth?
I think just freshman year. Everything's so much easier to remember when it's new.

How are you surviving your thesis?
Copious amounts of peanut butter and caffeine. Well, that and camping outside of English professor's offices...

What advice can you give to underclassman?
Talk to your professors whenever you get stuck in the writing process. Every time I didn't, I ended up regretting it.

What are your plans for after graduation?
Do you think Ferris took that job as a fry cook on Mars? Just kidding!

Well, I don't have any set plans yet, but I am looking into a writing internship with Science News Magazine, and I was recently accepted into a teaching program based in China. Ideally in the next five to seven years I would like to have taught English abroad and then return to the United States to pursue scientific journalism... Oh yeah, I want to fit graduate school somewhere in there too!

When you come back to visit Monmouth in ten years, what do you hope to see?
If Ben & Jerry's gone, I may cry. Also, I am still waiting for Professor Willhardt to hire a personal seamstress to personalize his vests. (Yeah, I don't think they're original enough, yet.)

What was the best thing you read at Monmouth?
I really dug Edward Albee's plays... They were great!

Any favorite quotes from the past four years?
I can't provide any verbatim, but I always loved my professor's personal anecdotes! (If anyone has the time, I highly suggest asking Professor Godde (from the Biology Department) how he graduated high school early!)

Last words?
Stephanie Meyer is an awful writer. (Low blow, Laura.)

Samantha Klein:

How are you surviving your thesis?
Don't ask....Actually, I'm not doing too bad.  I had a hard time getting started but now that I am confident in my topic and thesis things are going better.

What advice can you give to underclassman?
Don't be afraid to go to professors with questions and problems.  Not only will you get help with the problem but your professors will see that you care and are trying.

What are your plans for after graduation?
The only definite plans I have are to take the summer off to spend time with my daughter and husband.  I do not have plans for a career yet. 

What was the best thing you read at Monmouth?
This is a tough one. I don't want to say best but my favorite things have been
East of Eden by John Steinbeck (Literature and Film) and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof  by Tennessee Williams (Modern American Drama). 

Sara Hawk (ok, here we go)

What was your favorite memory from your time at Monmouth?
I don't have a favorite memory so far. I'm saving myself for commencement.

How are you surviving your thesis?
By obsessing over it at every minute, waiting until the last minute to write any of it down.

What advice can you give to underclassman?
Do hard things.

What are your plans for after graduation?

When you come back to visit Monmouth in ten years, what do you hope to see?
A plaid banner that says, "Welcome home, Sara. You're famous!" Standing on the front lawn of the college: Craig Watson, frowning generously in vague approval while Mark Willhardt thrills me with an Ode to Sara on the flute... Stacey Cordery looking classy in a vintage 3 piece suit. Gold buttons.

What was the best thing you read at Monmouth?
Correpondences with Willhardt. Everything by Flannery O'Connor.

Any favorite quotes from the past four years?
Early is on time. On time is too late. Late is "you're fired."

Last words?
Look forward. Think fast.

Noelle Templeton

What was your favorite memory from your time at Monmouth?
When Mark Willhardt made us all mixed CDs in "Angry Young Men," it was almost like we were friends.

How are you surviving your thesis?
Animaniacs videos on Youtube. 
Lots of whining.

What are your plans for after graduation?
Cross-country jalopy trip
Stalking celebs as a paparazzo

What was the best thing you read at Monmouth?
Pretty much everything on, Lucky Jim, A Clockwork Orange, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, and "The Ballad of Reading Gaol"

Survey Says!!!!

What is one book, poem, story, or play you've read this year that should be on everybody's summer reading list?

Definitely Truman Capote's In Cold Blood.  I read it for Gothic Literature, and it is the newest edition to my top 5 booklist.  Would be a great summer read!

Kayt S. Griffith


The Castle of Otranto.  It’s what you’ve all been waiting for.
Or The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone.

Noelle Marie Templeton


The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom is a fantastic read.  It is a true story about a Dutch family that helps hide Jews during WWII, but then the family ends up in a Nazi concentration camp themselves.  It's an inspiring story about the will to live and what matters most.

Carly Maki

The Kite Runner

Errick Caruso

I think everyone should read William R. Forstchen's One Second After. It is a frightening apocalyptic novel "in which one man struggles to save his family and his small North Carolina town after America loses a war that sends our nation back to the Dark Ages. A War lost because of a terrifying weapon, an Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP)... that may already be in the hands of our enemies" (quoted from the back cover).

Tiffany Veanne Lefler

A String of Pearls (Anonymous). This is the story on which the play Sweeney Todd is based, and it is a great summer read (though not a great book). 

Rob Hale

You know, this is a hard one. I've read some great things this semester and I've read some not so great things. But overall, I think Beloved should definitely be on everyone's lists for the summer. All I can say is Angry Ghost Babies... You can only understand if you read it.

Oh! And "Rappaccini's Daughter." It's the Garden of Eden gone terribly, terribly WRONG. Must. Read.

Fannetta Jones



  • You are all invited to the English Department Party Friday, May 7, from 4:30-6:30 at 925 E. 1st Ave.  Professor Watson will act as host, tour guide, and all-around entertainer.

  • Calling all poets!  Submit a poem to RATTLE for a chance to get it published and win $5,000!  Entries due August 1.

  • Happy Finals!

Words of the Month
Do you know what they mean?
if not, look 'em up, use 'em well!








Writing Labs

3:00-5:00 pm Monday - Thursday
7:00-10:00 pm Sunday - Thursday

Fannetta Jones

Alex Nall

Noelle Templeton


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