Self: When I wrote My Idea of Fun years ago, I was a stripling. I had a character — The Fat Controller — who was a kind of rampant sesquipedalian who was obsessed with neologisms and coinages and recondite terms. And maybe that was an expression of that part of myself. I mean, some of my stuff’s actually pretty straightforward. It just depends on what the mot juste is. I don’t think I’m a kind of wanton in that way, though many people charge me with it. I don’t collect words in any kind of obsessive way. I mean, I work with a good old-fashioned analog Oxford English Dictionary and if I look up a word, as a writer frequently must, and I see an interesting word next to it, I’ll note it down. But I never go truffling for words.
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