Study Guide

The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things Writing Style

By Carolyn Mackler

Writing Style

Dear Diary

If you've ever read Fitzgerald, Faulkner, or Flaubert, think of the exact opposite. This isn't lofty literature; it's easy to follow and full of teen slang. In other words, if you can follow your friends' conversations, you can follow The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things.

Just like people often do in their journals, Virginia loves making lists. Take these entries from The Fat Girl Code of Conduct:

  1.  Any sexual activity is a secret. No public displays of affection. No air kisses blown across the cafeteria. No carefully folded notes passed in the hall. No riding the moped in public.
  2. Don't discuss your weight with him. Let's face it. You both know it's there, so don't start bemoaning your body and pressure him into lying, i.e., "What are you talking about? You don't look fat at all." (3.11)

Then there's the list she makes for Earthquack at the end of the book, titled—duh—The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big Round Things:

  1. My best friend moved to the other side of the earth for the entire school year. I thought I couldn't survive without her. While I still miss her like crazy, I think it's good that I've had to venture out on my own.
  2. Besides, if she hadn't gone to Walla Walla (home of the big, round onion!), I wouldn't have been able to go to Seattle for Thanksgiving and get an eyebrow ring and escape my stress-filled home.

See what we mean? Highbrow literature this isn't; relatable and compulsively readable it is.

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