A former Wall Street Journal reporter and NPR regular, Stefan Fatsis recounts his remarkable rise through the ranks of elite Scrabble players while exploring the game’s strange, potent hold over them—and him.
At least thirty million American homes have a Scrabble set—but the game’s most talented competitors inhabit a sphere far removed from the masses of “living room players.” Theirs is a surprisingly diverse subculture whose stars include a vitamin-popping standup comic; a former bank teller whose intestinal troubles earned him the nickname “G.I. Joel”; a burly, unemployed African American from Baltimore’s inner city; the three-time national champion who plays according to Zen principles; and the author himself, who over the course of the book is transformed from a curious reporter to a confirmed Scrabble nut.
Fatsis begins by haunting the gritty corner of a Greenwich Village park where pickup Scrabble games can be found whenever weather permits. His curiosity soon morphs into compulsion, as he sets about memorizing thousands of obscure words and fills his evenings with solo Scrabble played on his living room floor. Before long he finds himself at tournaments, socializing—and competing—with Scrabble’s elite.
But this book is about more than hardcore Scrabblers, for the game yields insights into realms as disparate as linguistics, psychology, and mathematics. Word Freak extends its reach even farther, pondering the light Scrabble throws on such notions as brilliance, memory, competition, failure, and hope. It is a geography of obsession that celebrates the uncanny powers locked in all of us, “a can’t-put-it-down narrative that dances between memoir and reportage” (Los Angeles Times).
“Funny, thoughtful, character-rich, unchallengeably winning writing.” —The Atlantic Monthly
This edition includes a new afterword by the author.
A handy list of the 94 two-letter words sure to pile on the points Over 800 three-letter words -- 550 of which can be formed from two-letter words All eight-letter words that can be formed from seven-letter words Every word up to seven letters you can play!
To increase your word-building power and achieve the highest score, keep The Scrabble® Word-Building Book at your fingertips -- and beat your opponent every time!
Beginning his career on a lark as a freelance contributor to SCRABBLE News, John D. Williams fell down a rabbit hole inhabited by gamers, geeks, and the grammar police. For twenty-five years, as the executive director of the National SCRABBLE Association, Williams served as the official spokesperson for the game, and as the middleman between legions of fanatical word-game fans and the official brand. Now Word Nerd takes readers inside the byzantine, dog-eat-dog world of top tournament players, creating a piquant (seven-letter word, 68 points!) work that is part pop-cultural history, part anthropological study. Indeed, what Christopher Guest did for the world of dog shows in his film Best in Show, Williams does for the world of competitive word games in this funny and perfectly observed memoir.
As readers will discover, Word Nerd explores anagrams, palindromes, the highest-scoring SCRABBLE plays of all time, the birth of the World SCRABBLE Championship, as well as many of the more colorful figures that inhabit this subculture. Die-hard word fans will find invaluable tips on how top players see their boards and racks to come up with the best play, how they prepare, and the psychology of tournament competition. Those uninitiated in the mysteries of SCRABBLE mania will find a delightful, madcap memoir about all the fun people have with language and how words shape our lives and culture in unexpected ways.
Whether reminiscing about past national champions, detailing the controversy over efforts to purge the Official SCRABBLE Players Dictionary of all offensive words, opining on the number of vowelless words that are allowable (cmw for a Welsh deep-walled basin or nth for the ultimate degree), noting how long it takes a word to get into a dictionary, or explaining why there remain more male than female champions, Williams crafts a loving tribute to words and the games people play with them. Word Nerd will fascinate both amateurs and seasoned experts alike.
Bible Word Search Puzzle
by Karen Sue Adkins
One day, while Karen Sue Adkins was working a word search puzzle, the Holy Spirit spoke to her and stated she could do Bible word search puzzles and reach a lot of people in a fun way. She did some research and discovered that there were no Bible word search puzzles on the market. From that day on, she has not looked back. Her purpose is to help people get back to the Bible. When we get back to the Bible, things change. Over the years, she has increased her knowledge of the Bible by studying daily, verse by verse. She has completed studies of the Bible about “David,” “Matthew,” “The Revelation” and more. She has testified to having her questions answered, just by reading the Bible.Karen’s puzzles will make you want to study the Bible more, with a fun and intriguing twist. In today’s world, where there is no hope; Karen wants to give people hope. The Bible is Alive. Karen’s prayer is that these puzzles will increase your knowledge of God’s Word and draw you closer to Him.
Only words can do that. Words are magic. Words are fun.
Join Gyles Brandreth - wit and word-meister, Just A Minute regular, One Show reporter, denizen of Countdown's Dictionary Corner, founder of the National Scrabble Championships, patron of The Queen's English Society, QI, Room 101, Have I Got News For You and Pointless survivor - on an uproarious and unexpected magic carpet ride around the awesome world of words and wordplay.
Puns, palindromes, pangrams, Malaprops, euphemisms, mnemonics, acronyms, anagrams, alphabeticals, Tweets, verbiage, verbarrhea - if you can name it, you should find it here, along with the longest, shortest, wittiest, wildest, oldest, latest, oddest, most interesting and most memorable words in the English language - the richest, most remarkable language ever known.
Packed with three month’s worth of crossword puzzles, over 180 performance tips, and an array of tests—covering spatial recognition, memory, language skills, math, and more—this game collection will make your brain the biggest, fastest, and brainiest around. This is the perfect book for anyone who sits down with The New York Times crossword puzzle in the morning, works through Sudoku and Kakuro puzzles on the way home, or simply loves logic.
About The Author
Jewel Kats, 32, is a Diva with a closet stuffed with fashion accessories. Despite chaos, Jewel manages to work her chic tail off. She's authored three children's books for Loving Healing Press. For six years, she penned a syndicated advice column for Scripps Howard News Service and TorStar Syndication Service. She's won $20,000 in scholarships from Global Television and women's publisher, Harlequin Enterprises. Jewel also interned at Entertainment Tonight Canada. So what's got her through all this? Why, red lipstick, of course
Learn more at www.JewelKats.com
From Marvelous Spirit Press www.MarvelousSpirit.com
The key to such exercise is to constantly learn and regularly challenge your brain’s capabilities with new tasks. Regularly doing series of short, varied tasks will keep your thinking faculties focused and flexible.Five-Minute Brain Workout contains a wide variety of games and puzzles for people who enjoy words and language. There are ten examples of the same kind of game or puzzle with a wide variety of types of each. While the puzzles have specific answers, the games do not, which means you can continue to develop your creativity by doing them more than once and coming up with different answers. And there are enough puzzles and games for a year’s worth of challenging your mind.
The book’s contents can be used in any number of ways: to challenge yourself or simply have fun or as a competition against time or other people. These exercises work in many settings: home, work, schoolrooms, training and therapy sessions, and as an icebreaker at social gatherings.
If you answered yes to any of those questions, then you need to sharpen your mental reflexes, fire those synapses, and give your brain a good, hard, and fun workout! 10-Minute Brain Teasers provides practical and necessary advice on how to keep your brain in tip-top shape. From logic tests to word squares to Kakuro puzzles, this book has the essential brain teasers for keeping your gray matter healthy. If you are looking to be able to focus during those long meetings or you just want to keep your mind sharp, these puzzles will be sure to increase your brain efficiency while providing a ten-minute workout for your cognitive lobes. Like any workout, the brain teasers in this book start off slow and become increasingly challenging as you progress from simple memory tests to verbal-reasoning exercises. In the end, you’ll have a stronger, fitter mind—and you’ll have had fun in the process.