June 30th, 2011, 10:12 AM
I was wondering what authors play with English language in creative ways. Thinking along the lines of what Cervantes did with Don Quixote...except in English...using the peculiars of the language in comical and interesting ways.
June 30th, 2011, 10:28 AM
Whilst not one for 'general fiction', Sir Terry Pratchett's Discworld series often has names and jokes that rely on puns and wordplay. Oh, and a knowledge of British culture...
June 30th, 2011, 02:59 PM
Ogden Nash all the way:
The rhino is a homely beast,
For human eyes he's not a feast.
Farewell, farewell, you old rhinoceros,
I'll stare at something less prepoceros.
The one-l lama,
He's a priest;
The two-l llama,
He's a beast.
And I will bet
A silk pajama
There isn't any
The panther is like a leopard,
Except it hasn't been peppered.
Should you behold a panther crouch,
Prepare to say Ouch.
Better yet, if called by a panther,
The cow is of the bovine ilk;
One end is moo, the other, milk.
Who wants my jellyfish?
I'm not sellyfish!
Behold the duck.
It does not cluck.
A cluck it lacks.
It is specially fond
Of a puddle or pond.
When it dines or sups,
It bottoms ups.
The firefly's flame
Is something for which science has no name
I can think of nothing eerier
Than flying around with an unidentified glow on a
For prose, PG Wodehouse is very hard to beat.
July 5th, 2011, 07:58 AM
I haven't attempted Finnegan's Wake but Joyce is said to have tweaked the language until it yowled. (Or maybe that was his readers.)
Originally Posted by chokipokilo
Probably an easier read would be S. J. Perelman. He wrote short works -- fiction and essays -- and was very fond of out of date words. Imagine capturing the essence of Groucho Marx-like humor in print, and you have Perelman.
James Thurber's The Wonderful O is along these lines, too: What happens when pirates steal the letter O? It's good fun and a very fast read.
July 5th, 2011, 10:57 AM
Life's a riddle
Hmmmm....PG Wodehouse comes to mind ("Very good," I said coldly. "In that case, tinkerty tonk." And I meant it to sting.)
Gene Wolfe is a fine example of someone who uses the full width and depth of the english language (condider the hipparch, carnifex or epopts appearing in his Books of the long/new/short Sun). Umberto Eco also uses language as an integral part of his storytelling, eg. in Name of the Rose. AE van Vogt introduces 'general semantics' in his Null-A (i.e. Non-Aristotelian logic) novels..but I'm drifting i fear...
Highly original use of typeface and page layout: House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski.
And one the best in using the peculiars of the language in comical and interesting ways: René Goscinny, author of Astérix