Help Wordnik hunt for a million missing words by backing our Kickstarter!


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. One who scribbles, especially an author regarded as very minor, untalented, or disreputable: a scribbler of sentimental verse.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. One who scribbles; a hasty or untalented writer or artist.
  • n. A machine for coarse carding or teasing of wool.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. One who scribbles; a petty author; a writer of no reputation; a literary hack.
  • n. A scribbling machine.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. One who scribbles or writes carelessly, loosely, or badly; hence, a petty author; a writer of no reputation.
  • n. A machine used for scribbling cotton or woolen fiber.
  • n. A person who tends such a machine and is said to scribble the fiber.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a writer whose handwriting is careless and hard to read
  • n. informal terms for journalists


scribble +‎ -er (Wiktionary)


  • David Aaronovitch criticises the "melange of questionable statistics, assertions dressed as facts and straightforward scapegoating cranked out by Migration Watch UK and its main scribbler, Anthony Browne", and attacks the 'lies, damned lies' of the anti-immigration lobby.

    The Writing On The Wall

  • (The scribbler was a reporter for the Detroit News, which ran a front-page story about that Helms-Ellis-Bauman confab in the next day's late editions.)

    Dream Ticket Memories

  • A scrivener is a public copyist, but that noun has fallen into disuse except among notaries public; a scribe, once “a copyist of biblical texts,” is now used jocularly to mean “journalist,” and a scribbler is a put-down of a writer.

    No Uncertain Terms

  • "For whom did it concern to know that one or another scribbler was a dunce?"

    Dr. Johnson and His Circle

  • The subject itself had nothing generally interesting, for whom did it concern to know that one or another scribbler was a dunce?

    Lives of the English Poets: Prior, Congreve, Blackmore, Pope

  • [249] Yet Johnson, in his _Life of Pope_ (_Works_, viii. 276), seems to be much of Boswell's opinion; for in writing of _The Dunciad_, he says: -- 'The subject itself had nothing generally interesting, for whom did it concern to know that one or another scribbler was a dunce?'

    Life of Johnson, Volume 2 1765-1776

  • If "scribbler" is a writer, why could not "bad writer" be omitted?

    Assimilative Memory or, How to Attend and Never Forget

  • "Accursed scribbler!" cries the wretch, whose false

    The Lake of Geneva

  • But it would be a mistake to think of Mr. Ferry as just another scribbler in a Left Bank café.

    How to Think About How to Live

  • Madmen in authority, who hear voices in the air, are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler of a few years back.

    Matthew Yglesias » Nobody Wants to Lose an Aircraft Carrier for Their State


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • In Hollywood, it's slang for a TV writer.

    August 26, 2009