A unique blog dedicated to covering the worlds of book publishing and the news media, revealing creative ideas, practical strategies, interesting stories, and provocative opinions. Along the way, discover savvy but entertaining insights on book marketing, public relations, branding, and advertising from a veteran of two decades in the industry of book publishing publicity and marketing.
Monday, September 5, 2016
Romping Through The Peculiarities Of Our Language
is “abbreviation” such a long word?
is “lisp” so hard to say if you have one?
can being “blunt” result in a cutting remark?
are the things Londoner Teresa Monachino wonders aloud in her book, Words FailMe, a visually appealing peek at the irregularities, challenges
and conflicts of the English language.
It’s a wonderfully packaged short, small book from Phaidon.
hoodwinks us into believing one thing while concealing something quite
different. All is not what it seems," writes Monachino.
notes the oddities and quirks of our language in a clear and catchy way.
wonders why palindrome is not one. She
questions why monosyllabic has five syllables.
She wonders how verb can be a noun. She wonders how the anagram of
funeral could spell out real fun.
her best one: “While there are many cases
where a double negative conveys a positive, there is no case where a double
positive conveys a negative. Yeah,
could become “on the sly,” astronomers becomes “no more stars,” and
violence is “nice love.” Monachino also notes
how we use redundancy for emphasis, such as unexpected surprise, free gift,
frozen ice, and past experience. She also
shows how one letter can make a contradictory difference to a word. Behold:
also notes how some words are made up of two unrelated words that, when
hyphenated due to where they land on a page, sound revealing. For instance:
ad agency said that they would beg-
their new campaign.”
with you regularly, either in an individual session or within a group, the-
are available either in hospitals or offices, providing treatment for people of
all ages whose functioning is impaired.”
Words Fail Me show us that
words never fail to entertain and perplex us.
Enjoy it at your own peril -- and delight.
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