All Posts By

Rowan Jones

Dictionary Website Adds Over 300 Words and Phrases for 2019

By | Language, News | No Comments
Dictionary.com is the go-to website for many internet users in search of English definitions, synonyms, word origins, slang phrases, idioms, abbreviations, and much more.

2019 has been a busy year for the site so far with over 300 new definitions being added thanks to an increase in online slang and a rise in social and political debate on social media. Some may moan about ‘identity culture’ causing devision, however many more find the new language created around gender and sexuality to be empowering and inclusive. One such word added to Dictionary.com is ‘aromantic’, meaning: “a person who is free from romantic attraction to anyone or free from the desire for romantic love.” For those who would identify as ‘aromantic’ this addition to the dictionary is a validating and positive experience.

We have chosen a selection of our favourite additions below, but visit the dictionary website for the full list of new and popular words and phrases for 2019.

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Joni Mitchell Artwork and Poetry to be Published in 2019

By | Arty, New Releases, News | No Comments
Joni Mitchell is a Canadian folk-pop legend best known for her award-winning songwriting and multidimensional approach to music. Her style never settled on ‘just’ folk or pop, jazz or rock and roll, and gained her fans from all over the music world.

As well as songwriting, Mitchell is an artist in other ways. Her poetry, drawings, and paintings are soon to be released to the public in a brand new anthology. The book, Morning Glory on the Vine: Early Songs and Drawings, is a must-have for Joni Mitchell fans as it includes hand-written lyrics and paintings. The anthology was created originally as a Christmas gift for close friends and family in the year her album Blue topped the charts.

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If the Star Signs were Vintage Pulp Fiction Books…

By | Inspired by Literature, News | No Comments
Pulp fiction (and no we don’t mean the Tarantino movie) is a term used to describe early-20th century fiction that was mass-produced with cheap, ‘pulp’ paper. The affordability of the production was a boon to the creative writing industry and allowed many writers to churn out some wonderful escapism.

However, since nothing is sacred, some clever clogs decided to trawl the titles and assign each zodiac sign to a pulp fiction title: some a little trashier than others (I’m looking at you, Virgo).

Is yours scarily accurate, or just plain offensive? Let us know!

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Huge literary mural in the Netherlands is dedicated to residents

By | Arty, News | No Comments
A huge literary mural has transformed the side of a residential building in the Netherlands into a colourful bookshelf.

Dutch artist JanIsDeMan and his fellow creative Deef Feed came together to inject some colour into Jan’s hometown of Utrecht.

The project began with Jan asking residents of the building to name their favourite books so he could personally dedicate the mural to each of them. They offered an array of titles from seven different languages, and now the literary mural displays them proudly.

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Stephen King hints at future adaptations of his books

By | Adaptations, News | No Comments
Stephen King has teased fans with news that more of his books may be adapted to film or television in the future.

Following the success of the first part of IT in 2017 and with Doctor Sleep, and Pet Sematary coming soon, King hinted to Entertainment Weekly that there may be more adaptations in the pipeline.

Streaming sites such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime have become increasingly interested in showcasing already-existing stories, which King attributes in part to the success of IT.

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Fantasy writer criticises bookstores for shelf space given to ‘dead guys’

By | Authors, News | One Comment
Fantasy and science fiction writer, Fonda Lee, best known for her speculative fiction Zeroboxer, and Exo, recently sparked controversy by speaking out against the over-promotion of classic authors like J.R.R. Tolkien.

Commenting on the shelf space dedicated to ‘dead guys’ such as Tolkien and Robert Jordan, Fonda Lee explained how frustrating and difficult it is for fellow fantasy writers such as herself to sell their own work.

Using Twitter as her platform, Lee posted a photo of bookshelves in her local Barnes & Noble, showing 3 shelves dedicated to Tolkien, and almost 2 shelves just for Jordan. As a Tolkien fan herself, Lee was adamant she was not attempting to discredit the authors, however she felt frustrated that so much space was given to two “dead guys” over fresh and modern fantasy writers.

She may have a point about the saturated market of fantasy and science fiction writers, and the need to give newer writers a fighting chance, however both Tolkien and Jordan were prolific writers and surely deserve space on shelves to showcase their many tomes? Tolkien himself wrote over 35 books, and Jordan had published 14 and a prequel novel- perhaps showing the need for more space for such productive epic fantasy writers.

Let us know what you think!

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Rumours of ‘Lord of the Rings: Gollum’ confirmed

By | Adaptations, News | No Comments
Lord of the Rings: Gollum is coming!

A German video game company- Daedalic Entertainment– has confirmed the 2021 release of their upcoming action-adventure game, Lord of the Rings: Gollum. Previous genre-defining games from the successful company include a playable game adaptation of Ken Follett’s 1989 novel The Pillars of the Earth. 

The narrative-focused game will focus on J.R.R. Tolkien’s Gollum/Smeagol character after he acquired the One Ring but before any events laid out in The Lord of the Rings.

Daedalic joined forces with Middle-Earth Enterprises – who own the rights to Tolken’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings – to create the game. This will be the first game produced as part of the deal, with more games expected in the future.

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10 Slytherin Tattoos for the Dedicated Deatheater

By | Arty, Inspired by Literature, News | No Comments
The Sorting Hat has figured you out and decided you belong to the House of Salazar Slytherin, the most cunning and ambitious of the Hogwarts founders.

In this devious and proud Hogwarts House you will be in great company- hugely successful wizards such as Merlin, The Bloody Baron, and Lord Voldemort have come before you.

Some of the more dedicated Slytherins have decided to permanently mark their bodies with designs to celebrate the powerful house to which they now belong… Would you show your love for Slytherin in this way?

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‘Storybook Dads’ keeps prisoners and children connected

By | Culture, News | No Comments
‘Storybook Dads’ is an initiative started in Devon, UK to help connect prisoners with their children. In 2002, Sharon Berry worked as a volunteer at HMP Channings Wood where she noticed how difficult it was for the prisoners to stay in touch with their children. After working with the Writer in Residence, Sharon moved to HMP Dartmoor where she started the scheme ‘Storybook Dads’ with a handful of children’s books and a microphone. News soon spread about the scheme and many more prisons wanted to join, prompting Sharon to start a Storybook Dads charity to gain funding.

Today the programme helps prisoners from all over the UK, including women’s prisons and youth offenders’ institutes. As well as audio CDs, they create DVDs, help train prisoners in editing and audio, and offer workshops for prisoners to create educational gifts for their children.

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TV Adaptation of The Secret Diaries of Anne Lister Coming to HBO

By | Adaptations, News | No Comments
Anne Lister’s de-coded diaries have been adapted to screen once more but this time by the combined forces of HBO and the BBC. Written by BAFTA award winning Sally Wainwright, and starring the inimitable Suranne Jones (Vanity Fair) as Miss Lister, it looks like it will be a veritable tour de force.

The eight episode mini series Gentleman Jack is set in 1832 West Yorkshire, when women were to be seen and not heard, and lesbianism was merely whispered about. Anne Lister’s endeavour to turn society on its head came about when she inherited her family home; in an attempt to breathe new life into the household, she undertook business and was in search of a wife.

The cast supporting Suranne Jones as Lister include Sophie Rundle (Peaky Blinders) as Lister’s prospective wife, Ann Walker; Gemma Whelan (Game of Thrones) as Lister’s sister, Marian; Timothy West (Bleak House) as their father Jeremy Lister, and playing their Aunt Anne will be Gemma Jones (Bridget Jones’s Diary).

The series premieres on the 22nd of April 2019. Check out the trailer below!

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