A New Landmark for St. Clair Publications!

Since St. Clair Publications was opened up to other authors in 2009, we are celebrating 10 years as a Hybrid Publisher. That means we offer to new authors the services they need to edit and publish their books, including great cover designs, and reach world markets, as well as doing promotions. And we offer them at the most reasonable cost of any such publisher in the U.S, as well as giving the lion’s share of profits back to the author. In this time we have published over 135 books, some being distributed by Ingram Books, but most by Amazon. We have sold many thousands of books. We have also built a solid team who work well together to make St. Clair Publications what it is today. Working closely with me I have Michele Doucette, a French Acadian retired special ed teacher with a Master’s degree in Education (Literacy), who is not only our Editor-in-Chief, but Content Manager as well. She has published 29 titles herself, and does a marvelous job working with new authors coming aboard. Then Kent Hesselbein an honor graduate with a degree in Elements of Design who runs a Design Studio and consulting firm, is our graphic designer and webmaster. Spencer St. Clair, an Amazon employee and college student currently seeking a diploma in Design and Media Production Technology heads our Classic Book Division.

At this auspicious milestone we have made another major accomplishment. Up till now all of our books have been in English. Today that changed! Thanks to Maria Alvarez Vint, who was born in Canada,spent her early years in Cuba, and educated in New York and Madrid with certification in Advanced Hispanic Studies, we just released the first Spanish book! My latest offering, Predictions of the Prophets: Why Has Jesus Not Returned? is now available in both English and the Spanish version: Las Predicciones de los Profetas. 

Maria is currently pursuing updated certification in English-Spanish translations, and will soon launch her own business, Trustworthy Translations. She will also be joining our team offering her services to other authors at reasonable cost!

For all these things I am truly grateful!

Predictions of the Prophets: A Shocking New Book

It has been some time since I have made a post to this blog! I have gone through a very trying time with my health, but I am now doing much better, and looking forward to many changes over the coming year at St. Clair Publications. As for my personal work, last fall I released the final volume of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions: Volume III, along with an Index Book tying this series together. These books have set me aside as a serious researcher and garnered much praise from persons in the know in the literary world. For this I am eternally grateful.

Recently, however, I pulled out a manuscript which I had written 12 years ago, right after my release of Prayers of Prophets, Knights and Kings, a large full color tome about the history of Prayer in various religions around the world. This old manuscript was titled, “Predictions of the Prophets: Why has Jesus Not Returned,” and addressed the puzzling question of why so many well-meaning Christian people had been wrong about the “Second Coming” of Jesus which was expected around the turn of the century. My findings were a bit startling, even for me. I felt the world may not be ready for this book. But now there was someone well educated in this subject matter  whom I felt would give me her true opinion about the release of this sensitive material. After Rev. Dr. Jacqueline De Berry read and re-read the book,she convinced me that it was time to update the manuscript and release it. She even wrote a Foreward for it. Though still apprehensive about offending friends and others who felt differently, I spent a considerable amount of time preparing the work, getting it professionally edited, and getting it out. The final product is now available on Amazon worldwide and the St. Clair Publications website. Order yours today for only $9.97.

What is so special about Most Comprehensive Origins Volume III?

I’m sure a lot of people wondered why, when my original volume of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions became such an international success that I would follow it up with a second volume, much less now, a third. But I was interested in much more than making money. I was concerned with finding out the truth about how thousands of popular sayings which English speaking people use everyday came into being, and how many of them changed with the passing of the ages to what they are today. the original volume consisted of the ones that most people had long used and wondered most about–or at least, that’s the way I saw it at the time. What I found by researching and compiling that original book, combining the entries I had used in two smaller previous books and hundreds more, was that “things are not always the way they seem.” Folk etymology has offered a lot of cute stories which in many cases turned out to not be how the sayings actually began. Then a lot of my readers started asking me “what about this phrase?” or “what about that one?” So I embarked on a journey which would last over nine years. The second volume included a lot of expressions from other countries, as well as many Americanisms not in the original.

Now to ‘the heart of the matter.”  What is so special about Volume III? It seems like every time I hear some idiomatic expression nowadays, it is in Volume III. Let’s take a look at a few:

Bootlegger, chew someone up and spit them out, comparing apples to oranges, chief cook and bottle washer, the enemy of my enemy is my friend, enough to make a preacher cuss, faraway look in someone’s eyes, for the birds, get off on the wrong foot, get one’s head examined, get the goods on someone, get your head on straight, good riddance of bad rubbish, go over like a lead balloon, green as a gourd (now there’s a good one! Why was a gourd chosen as being green? the answer is startling!) growing like a weed, hit the panic button, how-do-you do (would you believe 1463), into every life a little rain must fall, is there a doctor in the house?, justice delayed is justice denied (how about 1646?). looks good on paper, murder the king’s English, mutual admiration society… Well I could go on and on. What about a more modern one…”Stick a fork in me, I’m done!”

There are between 1300 and 1400 in Volume III alone, which is so interesting that I dubbed it ‘The Best for Last‘.So you see, in order to understand how we got to where we are today in the English language you need the entire set… and there is now an Index Book, linking all three volumes. There is no other work quite like this one in print. Try it, you are sure to like it! All on Amazon and other online booksellers, or at http://stclairpublications.com.

Do you suppose he was right?

Some time back a gentleman reviewing my best-selling original volume of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions stated that he felt this book was only suitable for educated individuals, and “not for average guys like me.” I immediately rejected his thinking, but have since mulled over his reasoning. It is true that my top reviews have been posted by persons with college degrees, many of whom are educators, ministers, writers, reporters, etc. So I began to wonder if he may have been right. But later I found that persons of all backgrounds and educational levels enjoyed and appreciated the study I had made. The conclusion I reached was that those who enjoy reading these extensive tomes are people who are in search of truth, not those who are happy with cute stories and explanations they have heard passed down as to when and how an expression began. So, If you want to find out how our speech reached the way we see and say things today, I recommend that you purchase this entire set, compiled from over nine years of studying the changing jargon of the English we use in our everyday lives, not only in the US, but in Canada, the UK, Australia, India, South Africa and India–anywhere our language is spoken. The original volume is selling in at least seven countries, and thousands have found it useful. Start your collection today on Amazon, or order the entire set at a discount at http://stclairpublications.com .

Special Early Black Friday Offer

My over nine-year long project has come to an end and the result is an astounding encyclopedia of over 4.000 entries carefully researched for meaning, changes through the years, and origins. The original volume was selected to be included in public and college libraries across America, been used as a reference for a Doctorate Thesis at a major University, used to teach English as a second language and praised by professors, authors, editors, newspaper writers and many others. They have sold in at least 7 countries around the world. Now you can own your own set at a discount, or give it to someone interested in the history and progress of the English language.

Just copy and paste the following link in your browser to get your special price:


Time Marches On, but not in vain

As another year has almost gone, great strides have been made at St. Clair Publications during 2018. Wonderful, previously established author Rev. Dr. Jacqueline DeBerry has been added to our group with publication of her two fascinating full-color children’s books, StarJumper and StarJumper Goes to the Moon, as well as more great titles by others like Barry Page Mercedes Benoit-Penney and poet, Merrilee Bordeaux. Michele Doucette has done a fabulous job as Content Manager and Editor-in-chief, and Kent Hesselbein has designed many delightful covers. Kathy Ann Barney has also been a big help in editing my new book. I have just completed my 9 year study and publication of idiomatic English and popular sayings entitled Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions consisting of the Original Volume first released in 2013, compiled from studies done and published in On the Origins of the Cliches and the Evolution of Idioms, (a humorous takeoff on Darwin meant as a joke) over the past years, plus a lot more; Volume II made up of a ‘Duke’s Mixture’ of sayings from the US, UK and Australia; now Volume III, with lots of proverbs and well over 1,300 new idioms; and finally the Index Book for All Volumes. These four works consist of over 4,000 entries and over 2,200 pages in small print. It is truly the most comprehensive encyclopedia of figurative English in print, a fact which I am glad to challenge. I just completed updates to my Amazon Author page at amazon.com/author/stanleystclair . I am certainly excited about our future at St. Clair Publications; Big Enough to Reach the World, Small Enough to Care about Everyone!

In a matter of days the Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches set will all be available!

About nine years ago I set out on an exciting journey which I had no idea would carry me this far. I began researching and recording cliches, idioms, proverbs and curious expressions used in the English speaking world, and the most likely time and way they were coined. After publishing two small humerus books titled On the Origin of the Cliches and Evolution of Idioms, a pun  takeoff on Darwin’s work, which sold many more copies that I expected, one of my cousins said, “You may have something there!” I could see I was barely scratching the surface, because so many more sayings were being brought to my attention daily, so my work continued. In 2013, I published a large volume I called “Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions“. I thought this would end it. But it was declared by Amazon a “Hot New Release” and began to take off, selling far more than the small books. It ended up in numerous public and University libraries across America and brought much acclaim from professionals like college professors, high school and elementary school teachers, pastors, newspaper reporters, librarians, authors, etc. It was even referenced in a thesis at Vanderbilt graduate school by a PHD applicant. Once again I could see my work was far from complete, and thus I released a second Volume, and now the third and truly final Volume is coming out, along with a 200 plus page index book tying together all three Volumes for rapid location to all 4,000 plus entries. The three volumes of entries without the Index Book total over 2,500 pages in small print. Revised editions of the first two are already out. Early in November the third Volume and Index will also be on Amazon. Anyone who wants to pre-order the new books, signed by me, may do so by emailing me at stan@stclair.net for details!


How many idioms start with ‘On’?

I haven’t been doing a lot of blog entries or even posts on the St. Clair Publications Facebook page lately because every available minute is being used to wrap up my 10 year project of collecting, researching and publishing popular English idioms and proverbs: things we say everyday and would like to know how long we’ve been saying these things and why. It has been a thrilling ride, and a very time consuming one. Right now I’m not only working on getting the final edits into Volume II of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions, but simultaneously I am ‘getting out the kinks’ of the first three by eliminating duplicates and making an Index Book to tie the project all together. When this is complete, someone who owns  all three of the latest versions and the Index Book can look up any entry in the Index and go straight to it, without trying to guess which book it may be in. And there are almost 4.000 entries! It seems that multiple entries begin with almost every common word. I just finished with the Os in the Index, and there are 29 entries beginning with the word ‘On’. Here are some of them: On message,On one’s toes,On pins and needles, On shaky ground, On someone’s back, On someone’s dime, On someone’s doorstep, On the blink, On the button, On the edge of someone’s seat, On the flip side, On the fence, On the heals of, On the hot seat, On the off chance, On the lam, On the level, On the other hand, On the QT, On the rocks… You see what I mean.. and the list goes on. But if you only own the Original Volume (as thousands of folks do) you only have nine of them! That’s why it’s so important to own them all!. And a signed copy of Volume III can be pre-ordered right now by simply emailing me at stan@stclair.net, then sending a total of only $25 via PayPal to stanstclair46@yahoo.com . Don’t send a PayPal to stan@stclair.net! I won’t get it! It will be released soon!

This is the only detailed encyclopedia of origins of sayings in the world. Other books don’t go this deep, and a lot of online information is incorrect! Revised copies of the first two Volumes will soon also be out, then the Index!



Pre-order NOW! Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions Volume III

Volume III completes almost 10 years of extensive research into colloquial and figurative English. The series, Most Comprehensive Origins of Clichés, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions is on the cutting edge of research of both the origins and the continuing evolution of English sayings, idioms and expressions, delving back in time to determine the most probable way the expressions began, following their path through the changes of the ages, and noting current trends of changing connotations. It even recalls some phrases from the past which are now antiquated, while picking up on others which are so fresh that they have barely been introduced. Better than any other printed work available today, it expounds on each entry and gives detailed results on years of study of the English spoken and written jargon, not only in America, but in the U.K. and Australasia, as well as numerous foreign expressions commonly used by English speaking journalists, authors and the general public. These three volumes contain the largest work of its type in print today, and a separate index book will be released in 2019 tying them all together, giving fingertip access to almost 4,000 entries. It is truly a unique work, and will set a high bar for future work in this field.

The previous volumes have been included in libraries across America, and have received rave reviews from teachers, ministers, newspaper reporters and many others. The original volume has been accepted for a reference for a Doctorate Degree at a major university, to teach English as a second language, as well as a conversation piece while entertaining company.

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What goes into true research

I have been involved in doing research and publishing my results for the past thirty plus years. The purpose and goal of meaningful researchers is to find and publish new truth. I admire those who are able to accomplish this, and a lot of them are my friends.

About ten years ago I began researching origins and meanings meanings of English phrases and sayings because I found so much inaccurate information in both printed works and online. The results have been rewarding to me and obviously to thousands of others who have purchased my books in either paperback or Kindle e-book format. I have been fortunate to have some intelligent, educated people give me rave reviews.

90% of the ones posted on Amazon have been 5 stars on my most popular volume, Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions, original book. My work has been selected by several college and university libraries, as well as public and school libraries, and numerous authors and professors. It has been used to teach English as a second language and as a reference work for obtaining a doctorate degree at a leading University.

But there will still be some who ‘just don’t get it,’  and that’s okay. But when I am able to uncover information regarding a figurative expression which has not been previously published, I feel that I am still making headway in the education of others.

Of course I’m not perfect, and sometimes miss the mark a bit, but I truly try. Thousands of hours have been put into my work, and I have proven some popular sources to be wrong about the dates or coining of some popular phrases. I now have two different volumes of this book in print, and am well into the final Volume III, due out next spring. Once this book has been released, the set will contain over 3, 800 sayings. After that, I plan on doing an alphabetical order index book which will list all entries for the three volumes and where to find them. Just this morning I made a new discovery which may tell how a phrase went from literal to figurative. The possible original source, to my knowledge, has never before been linked in any other book of this type. Here is that entry. This will serve as a copyright on this information:

Playing for keeps

This is an idiom for doing something seriously rather than just for fun. It originated in the 19th century in the game of marbles, which is played by drawing a circle on the ground and each player placing a set number of marbles in the circle, then taking turns shooting another marble into the circle to try to knock out the opponent’s marbles. The term ‘playing for keeps’ was coined to mean that the marbles knocked out of the circle would become the property of the player who knocked them out. ‘Playing for fun’ meant that the original owner retained the marbles brought into play.  By the early 20th century, playing for keeps came to be applied to any matter which became serious. One of the very first figurative examples, newly discovered in the writing of this book, and possibly even the coining, came in Bourbon News, Paris, Kentucky, May 24, 1901, page 4, column 3, under the heading, ‘Playing for Keeps’:

“I know a whole lot of boys, some of them living in Massachusetts today, who are playing for keeps, but instead of marbles, they are using wheat or corn, or railroad stocks.”