Can someone tell me the meaning of 'writes circles around' in this sentence?:

'If I say that he writes circles around everyone else in Comics, it's not simply to put him in a rare class with Gilbert Hernandez and Art Spiel ...' (found in the introduction of 'The Sandman Vol.2 - The Dream Country').

I've seen this other question here Meaning of "Circle around with" but I'm still not clear about this:(

  • "Activity Xs circles around" is a set phrase/idiom, meaning simply that the person is fast and adept at activity X compared to his peers.
    – Hot Licks
    Apr 4, 2015 at 12:29

1 Answer 1


It's a variation of the idiom "run rings around."

When you say that someone "can run rings around" someone else, its means they're a much faster runner, to the point that they could literally run around another person in a race and still be faster.

As it's generally used, it means someone who's much better at something.

"Runs circles around" is a slight variation and then "writes circles around" is used in this case since the quote is talking about authors.


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