From somewhere near the beginning of the 1979 novel The Long Walk by Stephen King, writing as Richard Bachman—the experience of reading a new word whose exact meaning you know because of context and composition:

Curley’s angular, pimply head disappeared in a hammersmash of blood and brains and flying skull fragments.

There’s also the issues of adverbs. They’re bad.

A bird twitted sleepily. They passed another farmhouse where a man with a beard waved at them after putting down a wheel-barrow filled with hoes, rakes and planting-seed.

A crow cawed raucously off in the shadowy woods. The first heat of the day touched Garraty’s face gently, and he welcomed it. He grinned and yelled loudly for a canteen.

McVries twitched his head oddly, like a dog interrupted in a dream of cat-chasing, and then looked around with muddy eyes. “My God, daylight. Daylight, Garraty. What time?”

What a piece of shit book. It’s no wonder nobody knows about Stephen King anymore. Counting adverbs is a scientific measure of literary value.


(Anymore? Does such a word exist? Is it “any more pizza” but “no pizza anymore”, or is it “any more” always and all the way down?)

This post was brought to you by the Adverb Defence League, in cooperation with the Semi-Colon Appreciation Society, and Neologisms Without Borders, but it could not have been possible without viewers like you. Remember, logophilia is not a crime. It’s an incurable perversion.


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