The keyword in this title is another. Most people who have kept the books they used in high school probably own a dictionary. All writers should, especially if they live outside of America—Australian spelling is different and Google doesn’t put applicable sites higher in their search.
So maybe you have a dictionary. Maybe you have a thesaurus, too. A dictionary of classical mythology is an excellent find at an op shop. Who could say no to a dictionary of idioms?
Okay, we’re getting a bit carried away, here. Even someone who has edited at a professional level, like me, only really needs the one dictionary. Are you even going to use any of these? They’re almost novelty items at this point.
Imagine a future in which dictionaries dangle from keychains and are accessorised in particularly ostentatious hats. In which children trade them in school corridors with all the seriousness of a drug deal that’s occurring just a little too close to the local PD for comfort, but hey, that’s where the dealer said to meet and who are you to argue with a professional?
Although, it’s not as if you’re specifically seeking them out. You happened to see a dictionary of Australian slang at a church book sale and like hell you were walking past that. And actually, a dictionary of names could be very useful. Names are hard!
No! Walk away from that dictionary of quotations and proverbs! You do realise that your dictionary collection is almost an entire shelf now? I think you have a problem. An addiction. This isn’t cute, anymore.
Okay, but a dictionary of abbreviations might actually be useful.