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.”

 

Groundhog deja vu

A popular 1993 Bill Murray movie titled Groundhog Day spawned a wave of use of the term to describe a day or time when something which had already happened seemed to play out over and over again. That story has now been made into a Broadway Musical. Another term, deja vu refers to an incident which to be seems strangely familiar, as if it had happened to one previously. Yogi Berra coined the term ‘Deja vu all over again,”  which is a comical redundancy scoring high in his list of ‘Yogi-isms“.

For the last several years I have researched and published books about the meanings and origins of common sayings, idioms and expressions which we hear on a regular basis in America, the U.K., and other English-speaking countries. The most popular of these is the original volume (now with revisions) of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions. 

For the past several days when I have turned on the television newscasts, I have been hearing the same rhetoric about the North Korean threats and the responses by President Trump. I try hard not to get involved online with political matters, as I have friends on both sides of most issues. But I think that everyone agrees that this is not going to end well. In hearing the same things for days on end, it made me feel like coining a new expression, This all seems a bit like Groundhog Deja vu!

By the way, you can get my popular book on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Walmart, the St. Clair Publications site and many others! Happy reading. Read some different entries every day so it won’t be like Groundhog Deja vu!

Walmart Website now carrying my book!

I was gobsmacked this morning to discover that Walmart is now listing my popular cliche origin book on it’s website! I suppose it is the dream of every author for their books to  be sold at Walmart, or at least on their website. I could never have accomplished this by asking them to list it. This just goes to the overwhelming demand by the public for this work. When it was released in March, 2013, it was announced by Amazon as a ‘hot new release, it quickly became the number one work in its genre to be brought up by Google. It rose to near the top of millions of Amazon books. It has been praised by authors, poets, professors, teachers, and newspaper columnists, but this is a new milestone for which I am so thankful! Thank you Walmart!

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Most-Comprehensive-Origins-of-Cliches-Proverbs-and-Figurative-Expressions/53630316

Author Day Library Book Signing a success for authors in spite of weather

Several authors chose not to brave the elements on Saturday for the big Author Day at Magness Library in McMinnville, Tennessee. I’m a little “ahead of the curve” because they haven’t posted the pics yet, but at least 15 authors came out, and the clouds parted mid day, bringing a number of folks by. https://www.facebook.com/magnesslibrary/

I even met a neighbor whose husband I know, who had heard about my cliche origin books not even realizing  by whom they were written. She came to purchase them as a surprise for her husband for his upcoming birthday! I promised not to tell. All authors to whom I spoke sold books, and certainly both who had published with St. Clair Publications. I sold quite a few.

In the meantime head on over to Amazon.com and get your copies of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions, original volume and the new Volume II.

Big Author Day Book Signing Coming Up!

Two weeks from this Saturday, on April 22, from 10:00 AM till 1:00 PM, a group of St. Clair Publications authors and some other author friends will be participating in a spectacular author anchor day at Magness Memorial Library at 118 West Main in McMinnville, Tennessee, I will be signing copies of both volumes of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions, and have samples of some other books.

St. Clair Publications authors joining me with their books will be Tammy Mentzer Brown, author of A Teacher’s Prayer, a marvelous true story about her struggles in youth in a divisive environment, and time in a children’s home, and how she persevered as a result of a caring teacher. Tammy has traveled to churches, schools and back to the children’s home as well as being a guest on Birmingham’s Fox TV to tell her marvelous story. ext will be children’s author, Dee Hall. Her illustrated book, Can You Imagine? is filled wit poetic verse which delights youngsters! She is having health issues at this time, but  if she is able, we will be joined by Katy Ishee, author of the highly acclaimed book, Pieces of My Heart, the true story of how as a teen she gave birth to a baby which was forcibly taken from her. After going through a tumultuous life including time in Haight Ashbury, motorcycle gangs and traveling as a MASH double for Major Margaret ‘Hot Lips’ Houlihan, she made a vow to find her long lost son at any cost. She has been on television and the story has been read by celebrities.

Also there will be my good friend, Country Music singer-songwriter, Sunday Sharpe! In the 1970s,  Sunday hit # 11 with  I’m Having Your Baby, written by  Paul Anka, the female version of his huge hit, and  # 18 with A Little at a Time, and had numerous other great songs on the charts. She was also nominated for an ACM Award in 1977. Sunday’s great novels, What Ever Happened to Bella Star? and What Ever Happened to Bella Star? 2   reveal the true story of what happens too many times to artists in Nashville as well as the music business in general.

Other friends will take part including newspaper columnist and novelist, R.D. Sherrill, known locally as Deane, who writes fantastic murder mysteries! .

Don’t miss this great event!

If You Did This, Please Let Me Know!

Usually late November and December sales keep my business and everyone else’s going for the majority of the year. However, it has continued to amaze and delight me that Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions has sold in January at almost the same rate as December sales. And now, to top it all off, last night some one individual ordered 19 copies on Amazon.com, bringing the 24 hour total of combined sales to 25, well above daily average for that book during Christmas buying season. I want to thank this individual, if he or she will come forward, and present him or her with a free gift certificate for the stclairpublications.com site. If this was you,or you know who did this, please let me know. I will not embarrass anyone, merely show my appreciation. And again, thanks to everyone who has purchased any book from us!

Stan

Black Friday–Cyber Monday Special

Numerous individuals have purchased several copies of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions for Christmas gifts. In many cases, people thought this was a “one size fits all” gift for family members. Think about it, with a good book you don’t have to worry about returns from a mis-fit if the person is interested in the subject matter!  So, what I’m offering from now through Monday for friends wanting the perfect gift for their curious family members is that when they order four copies of this best-selling book they will automatically receive a fifth copy FREE! If you don’t have one, you can get yours free. If you have five that you don’t know what to buy for, you get one of the gifts free! But this only applies to orders from the St. Clair Publications website at http://stclairpublications.com, and only on orders placed today through MOnday, November 30, cyber Monday. I will personally handle each of these orders, so you are assured of getting your free copy without it even showing up on your order! Happy holidays to one and all! Oh, yes, and I’ll pay your shipping, only one $3.00 fee per order!

Stan