Tag Archives: Dictionary Stories

Dictionary Stories

dictionary-390055_1280Jez Burrows writes ‘Dictionary Stories’. These are very short stories composed entirely of example sentences, drawn from a variety of dictionaries, with nothing added except the odd conjunction or preposition.

I thought I’d have a go. Seemed it could be fun – and it was.

The underlined words are the words I looked up in the dictionary to find my ‘example sentences’. (I used the online Oxford English Dictionary)


Before long the story spread throughout the city of the crazy man who had purchased a dream. His fellow officers regarded him with awe as some sort of genius. He now wants to be the father of the nation, a unifying figure. There’s something very scary about him but I could not turn him away, for he was family. Sometimes being your brother‘s keeper is no walk in the park.



Lady Caroline Lamb

I read an article this morning from Austin Kleon’s Newsletter about an intriguing way of writing very short stories. A chap called Jez Burrows has started writing ‘Dictionary Stories’ where he has been … “experimenting with writing very, very short stories made up entirely of the example sentences given for words in the dictionary, with nothing added except a little punctuation to piece them together.” So I downloaded the Oxford Dictionary of English app and had a go. (The underlined words were the ones I looked up in the dictionary.)

aa27d9deafaf176c99e5489b91e2af6dLady Caroline Lamb. One of his sophisticated London women. She was small and scrawny and the sinews in her neck stood out. A woman was supposed to stand by her man come what may. She stood still, heart hammering. She had to keep calm at all costs. Sampson was a small man, standing 5 ft 4 in tall. He stared at her in amazement.  Glass cracked at the sound of a pistol shot. The bullet entered his stomach. She fell to her knees and began to weep.