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Thursday News: BookCon at BEA, British Library exhibits comics, the OED...

“Elaborating on the shift, BEA said that its “research, industry trends, and direct feedback” has shown that the consumer aspect of the show is “critical to driving our core values which are launching and discovering new titles and authors.”” Publishers Weekly

“The exhibition will have sedition and rebellion at its heart, said Dunning. It will also aim to explode a few myths, not least that the publications are all about superheroes and that reading them is the pastime of boys, he added.”

“When we first started to talk to people about this comic book show some people said ‘it’s only for boys’. It’s garbage,” said Dunning. “People were saying girls don’t like blood and psychologically upsetting things and the girls were saying, ‘we love it’.” The Guardian

Nearing only its third edition, and with a new chief editor for the first time in 20 years, the O.E.D. currently has 619,000 words defined, and should be complete by 2037 (assuming everything goes well). It’s also expensive (unless you have university access) and can be somewhat cumbersome to use (the full edition is 20 volumes). But hopefully not for long:

“Mr. Proffitt advocates links in digitized literature to O.E.D. entries; he wants more use by students, whose distinction between “dictionary” and “web search” is increasingly blurred; he is also willing to license O.E.D. data to other companies.” New York Times

“Icahn, a billionaire known for taking stakes in companies to force changes or pay dividends to shareholders, has nominated two of his employees to eBay’s board ‘and submitted a non-binding proposal for a spinoff of its PayPal business into a separate company,’ said an eBay statement.” Yahoo News

isn't sure if she's an average Romance reader, or even an average reader, but a reader she is, enjoying everything from literary fiction to philosophy to history to poetry. Historical Romance was her first love within the genre, but she's fickle and easily seduced by the promise of a good read. She approaches every book with the same hope: that she will be filled from the inside out with something awesome that she didnʼt know, didnʼt think about, or didnʼt feel until that moment. And she's always looking for the next mind-blowing read, so feel free to share any suggestions!


  1. hapax
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 07:57:41

    Back when we were dating, I knew that the eventual hapaxSpouse was “the One” when he gave me the OED micro set (the one with the infinitesimal print that comes with its own magnifying lens) as a Valentine’s Day present.

    If anyone has access to the online OED through their public or academic library, I strongly urge you to check it out. It’s a bit of a hassle to use, but once you get the hang of it, it can be an addictive time sink!

  2. Isobel Carr
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 09:03:34

    San Francisco offers library cards to anyone in California (though you have to physically show up and request one) and their online services include the OED. The UC system also offers access, and you can buy a library membership for under $100 year (I used UC Berkeley to ILL sooooooo many research books when I was starting out and severely underpaid).

  3. Carolyne
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 11:14:29

    My desert island reading list is… the OED. And if it’s the edition with the infinitesimal print and the magnifying glass, just think how useful the extra tool will be!

    Although it would be one of those Twilight Zone/Burgess Meredith moments if I lost or broke the magnifying glass…

  4. Anna Richland
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 12:01:20

    Don’t get out your pitchforks at the apostasy, but I confess to having the 2-volume “Shorter Oxford.” We keep it on the first floor not far from the kitchen, and we all use it – I can settle a dispute faster than Mr. Richland can look something up on his smartie-pants phone. Love the subtle yet cheeky humor. For example, if you look up the definition of ‘filibuster’ – first entry is (rare) a freebooter or pirate pillaging the Spanish colonies in the West Indies … and the sentence to illustrate the political definition is priceless:

    D. Halberstam: It was not a short spiel, but a genuine filibuster, and it went on and on, reactionary and embarrassing.

    I want to see the OED survive. Part of me wishes we still had the leather-bound Britannicas of my childhood.

  5. Susan
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 12:58:10

    @hapax: I bought that micro set, which was a not-so-inconsiderable investment for me at the time. I think my mother swiped the magnifying glass, tho.

  6. Janine
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 17:58:27

    @Isobel Carr: That’s awesome.

    For those who live in Southern California, Santa Monica’s Public Library system has a similar policy. You have to present your ID in person but if you have a California address, you will get a card, though now non-Santa Monica residents have to pay $25 fee (this is a new policy). The library has both the Oxford English Dictionary and the OED Historical Thesaurus among its online databases.

  7. MikiS
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 19:31:05

    I just checked – Columbus Metropolitan Library (Ohio) also has online access to the OED. In Ohio, if a library is public (and therefore receives state funding as part of it’s operating budget), any Ohio resident has to be given access. You do have to request the library card in person, and many libraries also require physical renewals every so often (Cleveland requires annual renewals in person).

  8. SonomaLass
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 20:15:34

    @Anna Richland: We keep “The SOD” handy too; it is our go-to reference for Scrabble and other word games. It’s really the family dictionary, much to the chagrin of some of our kids’ homework buddies back in the day.

  9. SAO
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 22:17:41

    Interesting that the Dunning quoted in the Guardian article about the British Library is American. A Brit would have said “rubbish” not “garbage,” as I remember well from my first few months in England when I looked up my trash day in the booklet of council services. Nothing under T for trash, nothing under G for garbage. I started at A and paged through to R where I found rubbish.

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