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Think Tank

Since the 1950’s, the term think tank has meant “a research institute.” But even earlier than that, going as far back as the 1880’s, think tank referred “a person’s mind.” Another slang term for one’s...

Alternative for Anyways

Anyhow and anyways, said at the end of a sentence, are common placeholders that many find annoying. Instead, you might try finishing a thought with “What do you think?” That way, the conversation naturally flows back to the other person...

Plot Bunny

Say you’re a novelist working on your magnum opus. While you’re shuffling through the produce aisle, an idea strikes you and you can’t stop thinking about it. That’s what they call a plot bunny. This is part of a complete...

SlushPile Hell Blog

Ever thought about getting that novel published? Apparently, others have too, and some of their queries are less than persuasive for the admittedly grumpy literary agent who writes the blog SlushPile Hell. He posts some of the more colorful queries...

A Few Pickles Short of a Jar

“A few pickles short of a jar,” “a few peas short of a casserole,” “two French fries short of a Happy Meal”—this week, Martha and Grant discuss these and other full-deckisms, those clever ways to describe someone...