Posts Tagged ‘pet peeve’

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respect the word!

January 26, 2011

even though i have a blog, i don’t often read other blogs. i’ve only found a few i enjoy reading, even after many visits to “freshly pressed.” food, technology, politics, and sports seem to monopolize the majority of blogs, and i don’t often want to read about those (especially sports).

i’ve also noticed that many bloggers try too hard. maybe it’s really just a matter of taste, but this blog i read recently felt as if it was written in victorian times. actually, it was probably more along the lines of someone who puts every word into a thesaurus and picks a more “complicated” word at random. that really annoys me. synonyms are not created equal! words have connotations and specific uses. for example, a synonym for “exclamation” also includes “ejaculation,” but the latter term makes every normal person involuntarily picture an erupting penis. so, probably not a great choice when you’re writing about something your grandmother said.

that was an easy example. at random, a more challenging instance would be the implications of someone who “loses” during a game and one who “succumbs.” again, “succumb” is a synonym for “lose,” but succumb implies not putting up much of a fight. or “famous” versus “notorious” where the second term hints at being known for something negative. or even just understanding that some words like “vex” are out of style right now. people are “vexed” in shakespearean times. i’m sure there are situations it would still be appropriate, but you have to be careful or your writing will sound stilted or overwrought.

anyway, i guess i’ve always enjoyed writing that is simple but vivid. wordiness puts me in a bad mood. shoving an adjective before every noun does not a good writer make. certainly, it’s not easy to write and i’m not saying i know exactly how it’s done. i have, however, read a lot of beautiful, moving writing out there. stuff that makes you pause and read it again. there is an art to using the tools of word choice and sentence structure to create something that resonates. respect the word!

ok, i’m done with my little english lecture šŸ˜‰ feel free to use the comments section to share excerpts of writing you find moving.

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