Rory Bremner and Jo Brand help us launch a comic dictionary for the lockdown age as NHS charity fundraiser
Eye Books has published a comic dictionary unearthing hundreds of neglected, obsolete or forgotten words and redefining them for the world in lockdown.
The nominal author of Colin’s Repurposed New English Dictionary is Colin Nugent, a spoof character devised by comedy producer Geoff Atkinson. Atkinson is the veteran writing partner of satirist and impressionist Rory Bremner, who is also backing the venture.
In the finest traditional of good toilet books, arm yourself for the new normal with a new bunch of words to describe it. Read, laugh, cry, now wash your hands
Rory says: ‘In the finest traditional of good toilet books, arm yourself for the new normal with a new bunch of words to describe it. Read, laugh, cry, now wash your hands.’
Another celebrity supporter is comedian and TV presenter Jo Brand, who says: ‘Love words, love nursing and nurses, hate lockdown.
‘As the great Meatloaf said, “Two out of three ain’t bad”, so how about getting yourself a new dictionary to aid your understanding of the neologisms generated by lockdown, or even to help you understand that sentence? I didn’t and I wrote it. Go on, you know you want to, and raise some money for the lovely fragrant nurses while you’re at it.’
Geoff Atkinson created the character of Colin Nugent during the global financial crisis of 2008-09, when he entered into Henry Root-style correspondence with a number of prominent figures in politics and finance, including Sir Fred Goodwin (right).
In his current guise of lexicographer, Nugent dusts off ancient words to give them new, lockdown-related meanings.
A topical example is ‘aubade (n) A project that was once plausible that is now deemed fanciful. Eg HS2, Heathrow’s third runway, Dominic Cummings’ political career. Formerly: a poem greeting the new dawn, which seems somewhat forlorn and redundant.’
aubade (n) A project that was once plausible that is now deemed fanciful. Eg Dominic Cummings’ political career
Eye Books founder Dan Hiscocks says small independent publishers can launch books much more quickly than traditional critical paths allow.
‘When Geoff came to us with this idea, we were delighted to embrace it and to provide our services gratis to raise money for the NHS. The Covid-19 crisis has caused grief and hardship across the country, but it has also changed our way of life and may have a marked impact on our national culture.
‘Colin’s Repurposed New English Dictionary takes a humorous look at those changes, while raising money for a hugely deserving cause. We are proud to be a part of this publishing venture.’
The dictionary is out now on all ebook platforms, RRP £1.99.