Word By Word

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Word By Word by Kory Stamper

Did you ever stop and wonder bow dictionaries get made and who makes them? Yeah, me neither. But one day I was browsing the new releases on Amazon, I came across Kory Stamper’s ‘Word By Word’ and I was suddenly curious about how dictionaries were put together. So I ordered the book. And it turned me into an even bigger word nerd. 

If you thought all lexicographers were basement-dwelling word nerds, you’re not far off the mark, according to Kory Stamper. Instead of the basement, they hide in their cubicles and spend their days agonizing over how best to define surfboard. Is it a board? Is it a platform? Is it used or is it ridden? Not only do they have to define the words, but they also have to write or find examples of the words they define. And there are rules to follow when writing examples: no jokes, no names, be careful with pronouns and avoid personal bias. Who knew? 

The book also covers the history of dictionaries, their purpose and their future being threatened by the internet. And the chapter on bad words is quite entertaining and informative. 

If you love to read and have an affinity for words and well-turned phrases, you’ll like this book. Like the dictionary, I’ll be returning to this book again and again. 

Word By Word by Kory Stamper

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