For those familiar with Ambrose Bierce’s The Devil’s Dictionary (an online version is located here), this is my attempt–librarian style.
Adult fiction, n. Adult fictions may be found in three categories–that the grass on the other side is greener, that money grows on trees, and that cats are nice creatures.
Book burning, n. 1. The enraged reader’s final recourse. 2. The enraged non-reader’s first recourse. 3. What some Divergent fans want to do to Allegiant.
Censorship, n. 1. Ship sent ahead of the fleet to locate torpedoes. 2. The humane alternative to book burning.
Contradiction, n. When the features of a situation are opposed to one another. Example: The librarian shelved The Brother’s Grimm in the children’s section.
Fantasy, n. 1. The reason people repeatedly vote in presidential elections. 2. The attempts of some authors to simultaneously show multiple layers of reality while rearranging aspects of reality. See contradiction.
Fiction, n. This word is imaginary.
Genre, n. The cell block in which similar books are imprisoned.
Graphic novel, n. Cheating.
Intellectual freedom, n. The right of six-year-olds to read things that only interest their elders.
Library, n. A place where one goes to steal DVDs. Libraries own printed books, which are not as worthwhile to steal, and some also have e-books, which cannot be stolen at all.
Mystery, n. A literary genre explicitly designed to confuse the reader. Psychologists have attempted to explain the value of truthfulness to mystery writers, but without success.
Nonfiction, n. Boring, with the exceptions of tell-all memoirs, which should also be destroyed, but for different reasons. See book burning.
Oxymoron, n. A contradiction in terms, as in the phrase “a serious work of fiction.”
Pleasure, n. 1. An excuse for reading poor fiction. 2. A reason for reading good fiction. See oxymoron.
Reading, n. This phenomenon is most commonly associated with one’s Facebook feed. Prolonged reading requires concentration, which may cause furrows to appear in the forehead, and is generally discouraged for cosmetic reasons.
Romance, n. The literary genre in which bad titles result in higher library circulation.
Thriller, n. Genre designed to increase adrenaline while one slouches on the sofa.
Western, n. A literary genre frequently written and read by people who have never ridden a horse. See wish fulfillment.
Wish fulfillment, n. Achievable by fairy godmother.
Young adult, n. An adolescent under the delusion that he is growing up, but ought to be treated as if he had grown up already. That this is strictly a delusion was made clear by the marketing of Twilight as young adult fiction.