The secret reason I spell Denyer with a ‘y’

hhw1.jpgA comment on a previous post (by a Denyer) claimed, “You are the only person on the internet spelling denyer with a y.” You can tell this person is a Denyer not just by the rest of their post, but also because they made a glaring error of fact that could have been avoided by spending five seconds on the internet Googling “Global warming Denyer.”

Denyers, however, are not particularly interested in knowing the facts before they make their wild claims.

That said, most people spell the word Denier — and I used to. Why did I change? To annoy the Denyers? While that would be a good enough reason, the actual explanation is much simpler.

The copy-editor for my book Hell and High Water recommended that change for clarity’s sake, and I asked a few people, including my editor, and they all thought it was a good idea. So the secret is now officially out!

6 Responses to The secret reason I spell Denyer with a ‘y’

  1. Well, a lot of people of Denyer as a surname. And “denier” is either frilly clothing or coins.

    …hmm. Denialist? Denialite? Denialian? Denyling? Denyist? The problem is the pronunciation: de-ny. Any more letters and I have a tendency to to read “den-”

    Yet, this is a small issue in the grander scheme. Time for me to go watch “Waterworld” again…

  2. Albert says:

    I’m with you on the issues. That is, I’m not a denier or a denyer, but I don’t see how a spelling error makes for clarity rather than confusion.

  3. Albert says:

    I should also have mentioned that when I first read it I thought Denyer was someone’s name.

  4. Joe says:

    The point is to emphasize Deny. All I can say is that it was Morrow’s copy-editor — whose job is spelling and grammar — who recommended the change. And if you google it, you’ll see I am not alone. Hopefully, the spelling annoys the Denyers more than the realists.

  5. wotzi says:


    Heck Joe, and I always figured it was denyer to avoid misunderstanding/s with the denier value/s of nylon stockings..

    guess not, huh..

  6. wotzi says:

    oops – correcting my url..