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!

 

 

Local Resident Wins Princeton’s Highest Undergrad Honor!

I am so blessed that one of the avid owners and readers of my Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions series, Newby Parton,  has been awarded the Moses Taylor Pryne Prize by Princeton University! Established in 1921, this honor from one of the nation’s most prestigious universities recognizes students for character, academic excellence and leadership. After graduation, Parton, who has also been given a full scholarship to obtain his Masters, plans on becoming a civil rights attorney and pursuing a Federal Judgeship. Accolades have come in from numerous prominent persons.

In addition, Newby has served as head opinion editor The Daily Princetonian, for which he won the John V. Fleming Writing Award in 2015!

Parton is the grandson of the late great Bobby Newby, highly acclaimed local coach and radio personality, and son of Denise Newby and Kevin Parton. The following works to get to the full story, but must be copied and pasted to your browser.

https://mediacentral.princeton.edu/media/Newby+Parton++2018+Moses+Taylor+Pyne+Prize+Winner/1_ownok8ze

Status of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions Volume III

I just received a comment from a dedicated reader and owner of my popular cliche origin books asking me if a third volume of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches (etc) is in the works. It is time for me to notify everyone of the status of this effort. A few months ago the hard drive of my primary work computer crashed! I had done eight months research on a third volume which was on this devise and not backed up. I took it to a local shop which informed me that they were unable to retrieve the files. Later a friend in Utah volunteered to examine the drive and determine if he could do the work. Again, no luck. He did, however, provide me with information on two shops who do this type of data retrieval which is very expensive and time-consuming. One is less expensive, but takes longer to get around to each new job because of high demand. I sent the drive there, and hope that they can accomplish retrieval. Whenever this is completed, I plan on continuing work on this research as time permits.

I truly appreciate the thousands who already own my popular books, and trust that you will be awaiting the last one in this series when it becomes available!

Well, it happened again! Thank you!

It was great to see that in addition to 5 other copies of my popular book, Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions which sold yesterday on Amazon, one individual ordered 17 copies! That happened about a year or so ago when someone ordered 19 copies at the same time. It may be the same person…but I would expect it is a teacher, professor or school ordering them for a class, since I know it has been used as a text book to help teach English as a second language.  I am very grateful for this, and feel honored! But only one copy of the second volume sold yesterday. Of course all purchases are appreciated, but I can’t help but think about all those people who have, and use, my original volume who are missing out on the 1000 + additional entries in the second one which were researched just as meticulously as the others and would improve their library of phrase origins and meanings!

So… If you have the first one, whether you bought it yourself, or received it as a gift, I know you would love Volume II! get your copy today on Amazon or the St. Clair Publications website!

Both Book Signings Now Scheduled

 

 

 

I now have details to the second of my two local library signings of my Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions books, original volume and brand new Volume II.

The first one will be Thursday, October 20 from 3:00 PM to 4:30 PM at Magness Library in historic downtown McMinnville, Tennessee. This is an exclusive event.

The second will include me along with two other authors in an event at Morrison Public Library in the center of Morrison, Tennessee.between the hours of 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM on Saturday November 5.

At both signings I will have available copies of both books at special discount prices, plus I will be available for photo ops and questions about my work. These books have received high critical acclaim and the first book is in libraries, public schools and Universities across America in the UK and Continental Europe. They are different because of the thousands of hours which went into research over six years to produce as accurate an account of origins and changes through the years as possible, not just cute stories like some books contain. I hope tp see many friends and make new ones!

Throwback Thursday

The year on this photo gives it away. This is Rhonda and me on a lake cruise on Lake Mead near Las Vegas on the Arizona Border. This was the second time I had visited Vegas and been to Hoover Dam. It’s a lovely place and everyone should go at least once.

Throwback Thursday is one of over 1,000 entries in my new book, Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions, in its final look over before early release. In this one I have a lot of newer phrases identified, plus lots more old ones. Here’s the entry:

Throwback Thursday

This is a term used for a modern trend by users of social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram when posting or reposting old photos. According to an article in Sports Illustrated Magazine, August 22, 2013,  ‘From Hardwood to Hashtag: How NBA Culture Gave Rise to Throwback Thursday the term was coined on a blog named ‘Nice Kicks’ about sneakers in 2006.

Stay tuned for my announcement of the early release date!

Not by any stretch of the imagination!

I have received most of the edits now on the second volume of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions, from my editor, Kathy Barney, and the balance will quickly follow. I am staying busy incorporating the edits into the master manuscript, and all is on schedule for the promised October 1 launch.

In the meantime I have added a few extra entries along the way which I deemed worthy to be a part of this new massive work. One of those is “Not by any stretch of the imagination.” I am posting the entry below:

Not by any stretch of the imagination^ (or ‘by no stretch…’)

This old adage means that no matter how hard one tries, it would be difficult to accept something. A major online dictionary places the origin of ‘by any stretch’ at late 1700s.  The idea of stretching one’s imagination, however, goes back many years earlier, to the Friday, 13 April 1729 issue of the London publication, The  Spectator, in which the following appeared on the front page:

“The Gentleman was as diligent to do Juftice to his fine Parts, as the Lady to her beauteous Form: You might fee his Imagination on the Stretch to find out fomething uncommon, and what they call bright, to entertain her; while fhe writhed her felf into as many different Poftures to engage him.”

In a 1793 publication of The Plays of William Shakespeare, a notation from ‘The Historical Account from the English Stage, Vol. II’ by Malone contains the following with a negative connotation:

“It appears that when Pericles was originally performed, the theatres were furnished with  no  such apparatus as  by any stretch of the imagination could be suppofed to present either a sea, or a ship…”                                                                                                                                    

They got it wrong!

This exciting second volume of phrase origins and meanings will be released on October 1, 2016. Be watching Amazon at that time!:

I promised to post some entries from my upcoming Second Volume of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions. As I have repeatedly stated, many expressions have been wrongly credited in popular dictionaries and online sources. Here is one example which is in the new book:

Beats me^

This old idiom means “I have no idea.” In 1918, Edgar Rice Burroughs is often credited for first using it in The Land That Time Forgot, Chapter 4:

“‘Flowering shrubs don’t thrive in the subterranean caverns from which geysers spring,’ suggested Bradley. Olson shook his head. ‘It beats me,’ he said.”

Again, wrong! It was in use figuratively as early as 1824 on page 57, in Douglas, A Tragedy, by John Home, Reduced to Scottish Rhyme, Chiefly the Broad Buchan Dialect:

 Norv. Weel, I am in a primonirie now— ‘Completely beats me how I’m to get through.’”

First peek at the new book front!

In just over three months the new Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions Volume II containing over 1,000 brand new entries will be released. It is with the editor being polished up, and today I am posting the first look at the front cover! It has many hundred new Americanisms, a few hundred British idioms, and quite a few which are exclusively used in Australia and New Zealand. It has numerous proverbs and quotes not included in the original or its revisions, and even a few oxymorons which have become cliche. Stay tuned to my blog for updates.

COMPREHENSIVE COVER 6-4-16b.jpg