May 22nd, 2010 by Nancy
Yesterday I learned that in the English language, we supposedly use these letters the most, in this order:
often < e t a o i n s r h l d c u m f p g w y b v k x j q z > not often
Well, it makes sense to me that Z is at the end. But I definitely didn’t except N (Whoo! Go, Ns!) to make it in the Top 10.
Well, I spent my Friday night putting together a game based on this fascinating information. What? It’s not fascinating? Well, it is to me. Because I’m a nerd.
Here are the steps — my answers are in green.
- Pick a book title. Charlotte’s Web
- Count the number of letters in the title. Spaces and punctuation don’t count. 13
- Assign each letter points, based on the super-duper-official-patent-pending Nancy’s Arbitrary Game for Letters in Book Titles GameTM Guide:
1 e t a o i 2 n s r h 3 l d c u 4 m f p 5 g w y 6 b v 7 k x 8 j 9 q 10 z
- Divide the Total by the Number of Letters: 29/13=2.23
Arbitrary Game Letters in TitleTM Score for Charlotte’s Web : 2.23
Other Scores Calculated
Bridge to Terabithia: ~2.0555…
The Phantom Toolbooth: 2.0
And to save anyone else the trouble, I also calculated The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread and got a measly 2.15… so, longer is not always better!
So far my first title is still winning. Maybe one day an author will title a book with the sole purpose of winning this game… (Authors: Just kidding. Do not do this.) Get out some scratch paper, and see if your favorite book title beats Charlotte’s Web!
Nancy makes games like this all the time, because as she’s mentioned above, she’s a big nerd. With way too much free time.
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