Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Words are Fun!
This is a rough for a book plate I'm going to have made up to help promote my new series. They'll be stickers which I sign then I'll post copies to the specialist books stores. Must brush up on my signature. Why did I choose a double barrel last name? LOL!
I've been at work all day marking UNI assignments so I plan to have a bit of fun with this blog tonight. It is amazing how many ways a student can abuse the English language. But then I have to remember that they aren't natural writers. They weren't born with a love for words.
Ever since I was a kid I've loved words, loved finding out their origins and playing with them. One thing that fascinates me is how the meanings and usage of words change over time. Once upon a time, we had collective nouns for groups of animals and birds because we needed them.
Here are some of my favourites:
A murder of crows.
An exhalation of larks.
An ostentation of peacocks.
A parliament of owls.
So descriptive and emotive. If you want to read more collective nouns take a look at the list on Wikipedia. (I tell my students you can't reference wiki but it is so useful for quick answers!).
By chance at college the other day we were talking about collective nouns and how they could be updated for the modern world. We came up with a few. And while I was preparing this post I found this site where they had fun with collective nouns.
An ambush of widows.
An attitude of teenagers.
An audit of accountants.
A fidget of altar boys.
These are the ones the other lecturers and I came up with:
An ignorance of students. (You can tell we'd had a bad day).
An exuberance of school students. (Especially at the end of term!).
A snoot of lecturers. (Yes, we can laugh at ourselves).
Now it is your turn. Can you think of a collective noun for readers, SF fans or bloggers?