Comment Wall

Hello and welcome to my comment wall! 

Click here to view my storybook project: The Lion, Scarecrow, and Tin Man: Before the Wizard

Wizard of Oz illustration by W.W. Denslow. Web source: Wikipedia. 


  1. Howdy,
    I loved your introduction page. It was very fun and lively. I like the idea of giving a back story to the characters from the wizard of oz, that is a really cool idea. I really like how you are doing it from the perspective of the characters. That makes it a lot of fun as you get their own personal accounts and can get a real feel for what they are thinking and how they are feeling. I can tell that you really got into character while writing for the scarecrow, just a happy fun guy who is looking forward to having some friends. I also like the jest about scarecrows not being thought of as very smart, I thought it was funny. I think that the last line of the intro is a great hook and really prepares you for the story ahead. I look forward to getting to know how the characters became those that we know and love today!

  2. Hey Rachel!

    I really liked your introduction and I can't wait to read some of your stories. I think you have a really good sense of how to make a story fun. I think a lot of people are going to enjoy your story since it is based on times in college. Even though I was scared of the wicked witch I loved The Wizard of Oz when I was little. I am interested to read your take of the whole story and how you will place these classic characters in college.

    Design wise I also thinks your site looks great. I think the minimalist versions you have of the lion, scarecrow, and tin man are a great first thing to see when you open the page. I love it when stories are told in the first person. I don't know what it is, but my favorite stories are almost all told in first person so I am sure yours will be great.

  3. Hey Rachel! I am from Kansas so everyone makes Wizard of Oz jokes constantly so I appreciate your story. Your story reminded me of Wicked too, which is I love so I love your story. I love when people give well known stories prequels, villains a voice, or shine light on underdeveloped characters and you are doing that! You are def playing into my love for an Underdog, I really feel for the Scarecrow and want him to succeed. I can't wait to see where his story goes! Also, I love how you made Lionel the relatable jock. It is a good in-between for the idea of what a lion character and the cowardly lion. I like how it is coming together!

  4. Hello Rachel! I think that your StoryBook is so unique, and I love how you’re taking the Wizard of Oz theme and adding a twist to it! After reading your Introduction page, I appreciate how you are developing the Wizard of Oz characters and giving them their own unique personalities. The photos you chose to include in the banner section of this page are also spot on… I really liked seeing the image of each of the characters that you introduced in addition to their names printed right under! It made it much easier to “put a face to a name” when I was reading. Your first story, “Lionel” was hilarious… I audibly laughed when you explained how Timmy and Lionel were sitting on their beds staring at the floor. I can just picture how awkward that would be! I am really interested to see what happens next in your project! I can’t wait for more and am excited to revisit again soon!

  5. Hello Rachel!
    This retelling of the Wizard of Oz Story is very interesting and one that I have not heard before! When I think of peoples renditions on stories, taking them out of context and into a college setting is the last thing I would think of. I think this is due to how immersed I am in the college lifestyle. I think when I personally think of new ways to tell a story it would rarely be in a college setting because I often try to think of something unfamiliar, unlike college. This just means that your take on this story is something that is unknown and very interesting to me. I am excited to see how you can take these iconic characters and turn them into relatable college students. Something I hope you do with this tale is that you wrap it up with them graduating and venturing out in the land of Oz and set up the story so that the reader can connect it to the stories that follow, just an idea. This is a very interesting retelling of these stories and I cant wait to hear more.

  6. Hi Rachel,

    I'm really excited to read your stories for this project! I think that having the other characters in the Oz brigade tell their stories is a great idea. Reading through your introduction I think that you give the reader a good look into what content this project is going to have. I also think it's cute that you gave each of the characters a name to go by instead of just calling them nouns like the lion.

    Your first story was very well written. I was able to follow along very easily and I liked the detail you put into the characters. It made me laugh that the lion's first impression of the scarecrow was that he would be easy to beat in an arm wrestling match. Going through the rest of the story my heart went out to Lionel. I'm not a fan of public speaking much less public singing. I liked that you had a bonding experience for the characters to build their friendship in the beginning of the story. You're doing a great job at your story writing and I'm excited to read more in the future!

  7. Rachel,
    This is a very cute college edition of these characters. I love it! It is nice to hear a little bit about their background stories. I liked how you made them strangers to begin with instead of immediately being friends. It gives the story more depth. Why were things so awkward between the roommates? I would love to hear more detail about the party. What did it look like? Who were the popular kids? What are they like? This was their first party it would be great to hear how they were feeling.

  8. I really enjoyed Lionel’s story. I thought that you did an absolutely amazing job with the beginning of the story. You outlined his background very well and that went straight into where your introduction left off. I like how he truly is brave, but one small event completely shaped how people saw him. I think it is great that you made it karaoke that he was afraid of. That is a common thing people are a bit afraid to do and it was an awesome way to sneak in the over the rainbow reference in there. I also really like that you had the link to the song, I thought that was a really cool touch. I think that you are doing a great job transitioning from one story to the next. You mentioned that the other two also had traumatic stories from that might, which sets you up perfectly for the next story, very well done.

  9. Hey Rachel!

    I really enjoyed your storybook layout! I thought it definitely matched the type of story that you were going to be telling me. I enjoyed your first story a lot. I like how you gave it a modernized feel by having them in school. To me they come across as everyday people that we might see on campus or in a classroom. The fact that you gave them all names, to me, helped give a more humanized feeling instead of saying, the tin man, the cowardly lion, etc. I feel if you had just stuck with those names it would have made it very bland. I definitely felt that I could relate to Lionel because I hate speaking in public and when I have to I either speak super-fast or I freeze like he did. Luckily, no one ever says anything, and I can regroup and figure out what I am going to say. One thing I definitely want to know more about is the party, because who doesn’t like descriptions of parties ha. Anyway, I cannot wait to go b ack and read the rest of your stories when you post them!

  10. Hey Rachel! I really like your storybook idea. I think it's great that you took such classic characters and gave them more modern backstories and plots, so that they become more relatable to us. It's a really interesting concept, and it looks like you're pulling it off really nicely! As far as your layout goes, I think it's really nice. It's easy to read and follow along with, and I love all the illustrations you've included. They really help add to your story. I also really liked that you included the karaoke version of Somewhere Over the Rainbow in your second story-- I haven't seen someone include a video in their project yet! I think your writing is really nice too. I like that you took each character and made a college student version of them, giving them their own college student problems. I really loved your story about Lionel; I kind of thought it was hilarious! I can't believe that all of those people would start chanting "coward" at a freshman for not singing karaoke at a house party. Poor lion! I'm really interested to see where you go with Timmy's story! Great job!

  11. Hello again! I am glad to have come across your storybook again! This retelling of classic Oz stories are very entertaining. This time i had the opportunity to revisit your storybook for the retelling of the Tin Man story, through the eyes of "Timmy." While I will say I can relate more to Lionel, I really enjoyed the commentary you gave to this character. I would like to give you a little praise for the way you are able to change your writing style for each of the different characters you write. This Timmy character is very different from the Lionel character and that is evident in the way you write their speech and thoughts. I specifically liked the like "Cleanliness is next to Ozlliness." Overall great storybook and I am glad I had the opportunity to read it again.

  12. Howdy,

    I really liked the addition of Timmy’s story. I think the beginning of the story was perfect. A quick little story of heart break that got him turned into the tin man. It was very apt that he was cold and emotionless, so that is what his outer appearance got turned into to match. I love all of the parenthesis within the story, they were fun little additives. What is ozliness? I don’t know whether or not it actually means anything, but it was fun to read. If you do have a definition for it, maybe add it at the bottom with the bibliography, kind of like a cliff note. Oh wow, another witch eh? Sounds like the tin man has a type. I liked that they were getting along well, I hope they have another chance to interact later on. Oh, any reason “helping me” was italicized, possibly because she wasn’t actually helping? I think quotation marks might make it stand out more, but italics are perfect for a subtle hint.

  13. Hi Rachel,

    This is a fun idea, and I think there is a strong argument to be made that the Wizard of Oz is a part of our folklore around these parts. Certainly its characters show up all over the place, and allusions to it and its tropes are common.

    Is it wrong that I get a slight “Monster’s University” vibe from this storybook? Taking something fantastical, and framing it in the familiar and everyday context of the American movie university setting?

    While the combination of the fantastic and the normal can have great results, maybe you can push the balance a little more towards fantastic? I’m getting so much “everyday college story” that I’m missing some more punch and unusualness to make this story feel like more than a text from a friend, in some way. Still, looking forward to the final installment!


  14. Hi Rachel! Okay.... this is so cool! Your story is so much fun. I love this Wizard of Oz so this was a great read. It is also a super well known story. This week for feedback the focus is on the images, and I am honestly blown away. The pictures you have picked flow so well and complement not only the story, but also each other. My favorite pictures are the three in the introduction of the main characters! I also saw that you put a youtube video at the bottom of one of your pages! How creative! Are you going to link a song video like that for all of the stories? If you do, I would think about finding a way to integrate it more into the story itself by drawing attention to it. Anyways, back to the stories, you did a great job and I am excited to come back and read more. Well done!

  15. Rachel,

    This is my first time seeing your storybook. First of all, I love the names that you gave the scarecrow, tin man, and lion. This initially reminded me a lot of the very first storybook I ever saw, where the story was told in Toto's point of view. But then I saw that it was actually pre-Dorothy, and it got much more interesting for me! I love that you tell us how each character became portrayed in The Wizard of Oz. It was very interesting how you modernized the characters, and sort of gave them high-school/college stereotypes. I did notice some grammatical errors in Timmy's story. However, I really enjoyed reading your version of his unlucky love-life. You did a great job!

  16. Hi Rachel!
    When first viewing your storybook, I was immediately interested and lured into reading your stories from your homepage image. This picture is perfect as a first impression for your reader because the narrator of your depiction, the scarecrow, is at the front of this image. In this way, I think this shows your personal perspective and angle of where you are coming from in this project. I really enjoyed how you gave each of your characters a name. I think this is a way to individualize and humanize these characters more, and it is also a great tool to help facilitate the fluidity in your sentences when explaining the actions of each player. On your introduction page, I am not sure if you intended to have the banner of each character linked to their aligning story. I would add this or check to ensure this is working because it was not when I tried to click on it. I think this feature is visually appealing, and it allows for easy navigation to each of your stories. Perhaps for the individual story images, I would consider using an image that is less abstract and more similar to the theme you worked to cultivate in your homepage and introduction. I think this would help make it visually more cohesive because the content itself is extremely impressive and cohesive!

  17. Hi Rachel! I have really enjoyed your storybook so far. I love the characters of Oz, of course, and I'm also a fan of the musical Wicked, so I love hearing retellings of the original story from different perspectives. I've never read anything that was specifically narrated by the lion, the tin man, or the scarecrow, so I was happy to see that those were the three you decided to focus on!
    This week's feedback is supposed to be on your author's note, and I feel like yours are thorough and give good context to the stories you've decided to retell. I appreciate that you described your thought process in how you decided to give each character their backstories and personality traits — I felt that it really gave additional depth to Timmy and Lionel (and Crowder, though I haven't read his story yet). Overall, I really enjoyed your story. Amazing work!

  18. Hi Rachel!

    I was really excited to read your storybook after seeing it was a play on the Wizard of Oz, and thought it was really clever of you do a prequel "before the wizard" take on it. I also love your website theme, down to the yellow underlines on the "home, intro, lionel" etc. I thought your introduction was awesome, especially how you did it by character, and really helped set up the tone and setting for the rest of your storybook. I thought it was clever that you gave them real names that paralleled their characters as well!

    I also love the karaoke version of Somewhere Over the Rainbow that you put that the bottom of the Lionel story, just because it was fun to set the scene and listen to it in the background as I read. You gave them all such good personalities and I loved reading all of the dialogue in your stories, I'm looking forward to reading the rest! Great job.

  19. Rachel,

    To start off - I LOVE the look of your storybook. It is unlike any others I have seen, and I can tell you put effort into the design of your page.

    When looking at the way you broke up your text, I think you have the hang of how to make your paragraphs the right length. They were not so short that it seemed choppy, but rather they complimented the story by keeping the reader engaged.

    My only comment would be about distinguishing your author's note from your story. Maybe consider using a different font, italicizing, or adding a photo in between the story text and your author's note. I think you could really separate and highlight the author's note by making it its own section that was apart from the story text.

    Overall, you have done such a good job with this storybook. I am impressed and cannot get over how aesthetically pleasing it is to look at. Awesome job!

  20. Hi Rachel,

    First of all, I like the idea behind your storybook of Oz characters going to college at the University of Oz! I think we can all relate with that. That's really creative to have a high school breakup be the reason behind Tin Man's spell! I liked your use of dialogue when Tin Man meets Lionel for the first time. Why would Tin Man assume Lionel thinks being a clean freak is a bad thing? Poor Tin Man. He went through a roller coaster of emotions, from being left along at the party to meeting Stella and getting help with cleaning and then her friends pulling her away and making fun of him. I wonder what would happen if her friends didn't come or if she stuck with Tin Man instead? Also, I wonder what happened to Lionel and Crowder at the party to make them have bad experiences? Anyway nice story and looking forward to the next one!

  21. I absolutely love this storybook! The Wizard of Oz was a major part of my life when I was little, if not the movie, then the sound track, or dressing up as one of the characters.
    Your stories are fantastic, you really built upon characters that I know and love and you made them even better. I was really impressed with the stories, but even more so when I read your author's notes and realized how much work and research went into these stories. I think that Timmy could use a bit more character development. I like his story, but I don't really get the lack of emotion thing. One of the first interactions with Crowder is smiling, and Lionel says he speaks nervously. I think that maybe you should show that he tries to mask his feelings a bit, or maybe have him talk about how he tried to mask them in the past. I really like Crowder's story. I can completely relate, my brain just freezes up at the most inopportune times! This is a brilliant storybook and it was executed extraordinarily well.

  22. Hello Rachel!
    Good job creating such a well constructed storybook! Your layout and pictures are very aesthetically pleasing. I really enjoyed how you kept the same theme throughout all three stories. How did you manage to find three of the same themed photos for the lion, scarecrow and tin man? I also think you did a wonderful job in your author's notes. You supplied sufficient and interesting details that enhanced your adaptations. Another aspect I really enjoyed was how your stories had storyteller in this case, Crowder. I think if you wanted to take your story up a notch you could up the amount of detail on the characters you include. Maybe you could even over do it with the characteristics you are trying to get to come across. Overall, you have a great storybook on your hands and you should be proud of the work you have accomplished.

  23. It is a little bit sad that Crowder was beginning to give up hope on becoming best friends with his college roommates, but I guess it makes sense after trying very hard to no avail all week long. Thank you for including within your author’s note what questions those answers were answering. I was immediately curious but figured I would not find out. It sucks how he was doing so good in the trivia game but then lost all respect he had earned only because he did not know the answer to the last question. People are very competitive, and it makes sense, and it did connect him to his friends, but still sad in the moment. I love the words at the end. It is important to enjoy today and the life you are currently living and not solely prepare for the life that you may one day have. Work towards it, but it is not everything, the here and now matters just as much. I also think it is perfect how you ended that part by mentioning becoming lifelong friends with a lion and tin man. Thank you very much for the stories!!! I have really enjoyed getting to read your storybook.

  24. Hey Rachel,

    I was very happy when I came back to your storybook to see that there was a third story up-and-running. You did a great job of conveying the scarecrow as the smart kid who gets criticized for having a brain-fart. It is unfortunate that he got teased just because of that one small mistake that ultimately characterized him as a scarecrow with no brain. The final paragraph at the end did a wonderful job of tying everything together so that your storybook provides closure. Also, thank you for providing "the trivia questions" in your author's note. I was wondering where all those random colors played a part.

  25. Hello,
    I have to start off by saying I love the way that your website looks. The pictures you used fit so well together! I also love the topic that you wrote over! I watched the wizard of oz so many times as a child. As for your intro it is really informative. I found myself intrigued at what they stories would hold. I found it interesting mixing the concept of wizard of oz and college together. It made me think of Monster’s Inc when they went off to college. In your stories I like how you jump points of view per story. You do not just keep the story about one person. I love each story you wrote! I think that would be how those characters would come to life in a college setting. Where did you come up with an idea to write about this? I don’t think I can make any suggestions since I wouldn’t change a thing about any of the stories!

  26. Rachel,

    I am so glad I've found my way back to this storybook. Time and time again I am so captivated by your stories. I have followed each of your characters through their "college" stories and I love how you are able to connect them all. One of my favorite things about this storybook is how each of the stories are connected. I've gotten to read the same story from three different perspectives which is a storytelling tactic that isn't usually available in other stories. I would love to know where you got the idea to write like this. It is very creative and it's almost like a breath of fresh air when compared to other stories. Great job on each of these.

  27. Hi Rachel! First, I want to say that the transitions between your paragraphs are really good. It helps the reader flow from one to the next paragraph. I like how you have a little warning for people at the end of the introduction. Secondhand embarrassment bothers my sister so much that she'll turn off a show if it's too embarrassing! In the Lionel story, I like how Lionel's mind immediately goes to arm wrestling when he meets Crowder. I wonder if that is constantly on his mind! I related too much to Lionel's fear. Singing in front of people is a brave thing to do, especially if you are slightly tone deaf. I am a little confused how the party lead to them being best friends. How does Lionel's story connect to them becoming friends? You might want to expand on that a little more in Lionel's story. I really enjoyed your storybook! Good luck with the final two weeks!

  28. Hi Rachel! Wow, I love the concept for your storybook! I can't believe this is my first time seeing it. I think it was such a creative idea to create a story where three of the main characters of the Wizard of Oz are roommates just figuring out life together! This is a fun little bit of background information that makes the story that we all know and love that much sweeter. In the movie, it appears that these three meet each other as Dorothy picks them up and recruits them to go to Oz with her, but I like thinking that they’ve known each other for years SO much better! I loved how you used testimonials from each of the characters to allow the reader to have access to each of their personal thoughts about the goings-on of their freshman year at The University of OZ! The elements of humor and creativity (like making them live in Emerald Hall and having them attend the University of OZ) made this such a fun read! Good job!

  29. Hey there Rachel! I just got the chance to take a look at your project for this semester, and I really enjoyed it! I thought that you did a really great job in taking the original stories and making them your own in such a unique way. The characters of the Wizard of Oz are some of my favorites, and so I really enjoyed all of your background information that you added for them. Sometimes it can be difficult to take some characters who are well known and shift them into a new story of your own, but you did so seamlessly. I have never seen someone use this format to describe characters as if they were students at this make-belief University of Oz. I have to admit that your writing was so good that I laughed out loud and had a few people stare at me like I was a crazy person... which is exactly what you like to hear as a writer! This was such a fun way to approach this project and overall you did an absolutely fantastic job!

  30. Hi Rachel,

    I came back to read another one of your stories and this time I read "Lionel." I thought the story behind Lionel's cowardly character was really creative. As the Cowardly Lion, I didn't expect Lionel to be the star quarterback of his high school football team and the homecoming king. Then, it was interesting to me that he had all those accomplishments in high school but had anxiety speaking to Tin Man. I thought it was funny when Lionel thought to himself that he could easily beat Crowder in an arm wrestling contest and got excited at the thought of it. You did a great job of showing Lionel's thoughts and emotions. I felt bad for Lionel when his anxiety over karaoke was the reason why he was known as the Cowardly Lion. I can relate because Karaoke and public speaking in general gives me anxiety as well. Great job and good luck on your finals!


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