|John D. Williams Jr|
|Pages/Publication Date:||217 / 2015|
In this memoir, the former executive director of the National SCRABBLE Association brings to life the obsessions, madness, and glory of the culture—from living-room players to world champions—that revolves around every word nerd's favorite game. John Williams began his career on a lark as a freelance contributor to SCRABBLE News, and fell down a rabbit hole inhabited by gamers, geeks, and the grammar police, and here takes us into the byzantine and—believe it or not—dog-eat-dog world of top tournament players, creating a piquant (seven-letter word, 68 points!) work that is part pop-cultural history, part anthropological study. (Indeed, what Christopher Guest did for the world of dog shows in Best in Show, Williams does for the world of competitive word games.) Word Nerd explores anagrams, palindromes, and the highest-scoring plays of all time, and offers tips on how top players see their boards and racks to come up with the best play, how they prepare, and the psychology of tournament competition.
"Word nerds will eat this up."—Will Shortz
"I love words. I grew up in a SRABBLE-playing family that loved words so much that they would mark in red the misspelled ones on my papers before I turned them into my teachers. John D. Williams had similarly sadistic parents, which is probably why he's been able to write such a word-worthy book. If you love words, you'll love this book. If you love SCRABBLE as much as I do, you'll really love this book. In fact, if you can read, period, then this is the book for you! If you can't read, don't worry, the cover is very pretty and it makes an amazing coaster."—Morgan Spurlock