Crying, apples, and Jingle Bells (…things I do at work)

Irrelevant cute photo of Sherpa.
I know what people on the internet want.

Sometimes I think my job is some Truman Showesque experiment in giving me my dream role and seeing whether or not I believe it is happening. I get to write about language for a living. It’s insane.

I was on a copywriting course today, with a bunch of other people from marketing divisions across OUP (who were all, incidentally, really nice and fun – I must try to meet more people in the building) and it struck me how lucky I am to write about words and whatnot. All their jobs are doubtless awesome in many ways, but when we were sharing examples of our copywriting, other people had edited descriptions of law books, or written email campaigns, and I… had written about apples.

Recently, I have been done the following…

a post about names in expressions
the language of crying
putting Jingle Bells through a historical thesaurus
scripting a video about the Oxford comma

Please go and check out the last of those… because there is a priceless moment in it that I don’t want to spoil. It’ll be worth it; promise.
Lest this post sound braggy or anything, I hope it’s obvious that I’m just very grateful that I get to do such fun things for work. There are less fun bits too, of course, but they aren’t really worth blogging about.
In other news… one day I will review the books piling up in my room, promise. And I may even finish Barchester Towers. (I never did finish Vanity Fair, it turns out… perhaps I will, 18 months after starting?)

9 thoughts on “Crying, apples, and Jingle Bells (…things I do at work)

  • January 10, 2015 at 8:07 am

    Excellent cat picture! I can't get the video link to work but I did like Jingle Bells. A booby-hack? Seriously?

  • January 10, 2015 at 2:43 pm

    Lucky you with such a wonderful job! Thank you for the tips and especially the video about the comma. Being a non-original English speaker I always wondered why you put a comma before 'and' and 'or'. Now I know. Excellent web-site from Oxford. I sure will check it out more often!

  • January 10, 2015 at 5:11 pm

    Simon my dear….you got me stuck in another book! I'm reading Barchester Towers and loving every page (25% done, a freebie on Amazon)! We'll have to swap reviews. And, one of those other really old books? I went looking for it, and there is ONE US copy in WorldCat…40 miles from here! My spouse is ILLing it for me

  • January 11, 2015 at 11:27 pm

    Are you responsible for the claim that the Oxford comma has to be used (or not) consistently, then? Was that just to disagree with the rest of your family?

    Glad you like your job, though.

    • January 12, 2015 at 2:04 am

      Simon – Sherpa is adorable. (It goes without saying – photographic evidence and all.) And the Oxford comma video is a little gem. :-) Made me smile.

      Colin – Occasionally I click over and browse your blog. The Charlie Hebdo post is right on target, and expresses exactly what I have been thinking this week. Thank you for putting that into words. I would have commented on your site, but could not find a place to do so, so I'm borrowing Simon's space for that.

      That is all. Please carry on doing what you're doing, both of you. And thank you for sharing your thoughts.


  • January 12, 2015 at 11:10 am

    Simon – you are a very fortunate man, but it is entirely deserved! I worked in sales marketing in publishing for a while – for medical textbooks. Imagine the fun.

  • January 12, 2015 at 1:35 pm

    What a fun job, Simon – you are lucky! I never even started Vanity Fair but I am determined to read Trollope soon….. :)


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