Anu Garg, of the AWordADay newsletter, reflects on the joys of language

Here is an article Anu wrote 14 years ago that is as valid today as it was then. If my prior note did not get you to subscribe to his newsletter—which is free—this one might.

What is it about words? Quoted recently in AWAD (A Word A Day), Margaret Atwood says, “A word after a word after a word is power.”

In the writing I most love, the words are sometimes sparkling, sometimes invisible–but always contributing, always engaging me profoundly.

What are words to you?


  1. You asked, “What are words to you?” and it’s taken me a bit of time and more than a bit of thought to get to this;

    Words are containers. Coded containers at that.

    Misspelled, they can become a puzzle, undecipherable, or even indecipherable.

    Words can be purposely misspelled to convey alternate meanings.

    Words can be written to hide meanings too,

    Words in their simplest form are indeed containers, containers that may convey something more complex.

    Words even have spellings that can convey a sense of class, “They’ve gone to colour the towne red, they have!” Or, lack thereof.

    No matter what language, words still are all the above, and more.

    Jane Austen said; “It isn’t what we say or think that defines us, but what we do.”

    I disagree. (For a number of reasons.)

    I would point out though that what we say and think are… words. What we do can only be properly describe using… words.

    What is it then that really would define us?


    Containers. Coded or not. (:-)

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: