James Jones Literacy Contest


Layni Branson, Editor

English IV is writing an essay right now over the short story, “The Valentine,” by James Jones. “The Valentine” is an autobiographical story about an episode from James Jones’s life that actually took place in Robinson, Illinois, where he grew up. James had a crush on a girl and it was the day before Valentines Day, so he wanted to get her something. He had been saving up all of his paper route money to buy her a box of chocolates. Kids were making fun of him for buying her a gift and his crush, Margaret, even laughed at him, which made him very embarrassed and he ended up regretting getting her anything.

The contest is sponsored each year by the James Jones Literary Society and asks students from Robinson, Palestine, and Marshall, to respond to the story in  a 450-500 word essay.  Three winners will be chosen and awarded cash prizes.