ENG 121: English Composition I
Example Journal Entry: Paraphrasing
Purpose: Use this example student journal entry to explore important elements that make this an
exemplary submission. Hover over the information symbol (
) or select the numbers within the text to
read about what the student has done well in this journal entry.
In the essay, “Good Boy, Beau. Stay,” the writer, Anna Quindlen, uses her dog, Beau, as an example of
how we should all live our lives. She tells us that we should live for the moment. Quindlen doesn’t really
use dialogue in her essay, which is interesting. So, even though she doesn’t use it, I thought I would talk
about what impact I think this might have on her essay. (1)[In some places, Quindlen describes
conversations that have occurred. In paragraph 3, Quindlen describes a conversation she had with another
editor about columns on deceased dogs.] She doesn’t recount the conversation in detail, though.
Additionally, she also paraphrases the conversation that she has with the veterinarian at the beginning of
the essay. (2)[Again, she doesn’t restate the conversation about euthanasia word for word. Instead, she
only quotes the words spoken by one person, the receptionist, who calls out “Beau” in paragraph 1.] I
always assumed that dialogue was pretty important to stories, yet Quindlen’s story works even though she
doesn’t really include it. (3)[Perhaps the reason why she doesn’t include it is because none of her
conversations are crucial to recount.] If she had inserted dialogue, it may have shifted the attention away
from Beau and onto either Quindlen or the person she was talking to. Even the receptionist, the only
person who speaks, says the dog’s name. So, the attention is brought back to the dog. (4)[In the case of my
essay, I think it may be important to incorporate at least a little dialogue. I am trying to show who my
grandmother is as a person.] So, people need to hear her to understand her....