Wordspotting #4

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I’m sure someone (if not several) people have told you in your life that the more you read, the better your vocabulary gets. My problem is that I have a horrible memory. If I’m reading a book or blog post and come across a word I love, if I don’t write it down immediately, it’s gone. So in an effort to remember and use new-to-me words that strike my fancy, I’ve been jotting them down as I discover (and in some cases rediscover) them and then sharing them in an ongoing series I call Wordspotting. If you missed the first three installments, you can check them out here.
Most of the words in this post I found while doing my job, which is editing for a website called The Cheat Sheet. I read dozens of stories every day, which expose me to lots of interesting news, facts, trivia, and when I’m lucky, intoxicating words such as these.
Definitions via Google Dictionary.

1. Quotidian

quo·tid·i·an
kwōˈtidēən/
adjective
  1. of or occurring every day; daily.
    “the car sped noisily off through the quotidian traffic”
    • ordinary or everyday, especially when mundane.
      “his story is an achingly human one, mired in quotidian details”

2. Eponymous

e·pon·y·mous

əˈpänəməs/
adjective
  1. (of a person) giving their name to something.
    “the eponymous hero of the novel”
    • (of a thing) named after a particular person.
      “Roseanne’s eponymous hit TV series”

3. Swashbuckle

[By no means a complex or new-to-me word, I just love that it exists and hate that it’s so typecast. It’s not used enough outside of the pirate realm and I think it should be.]

swash·buck·le
ˈswôSHˌbəkəl,ˈswäSH-/
verb
past tense: swashbuckled; past participle: swashbuckled
  1. engage in daring and romantic adventures with ostentatious bravado or flamboyance.
    “a crew of swashbuckling buccaneers”

4. Corporeal

cor·po·re·al
kôrˈpôrēəl/
adjective
  1. of or relating to a person’s body, especially as opposed to their spirit.
    “he was frank about his corporeal appetites”
    • having a body.
      “a corporeal God”

5. Kerfuffle

ker·fuf·fle
kərˈfəfəl/

noun

BRITISH informal
  1. a commotion or fuss, especially one caused by conflicting views.
    “there was a kerfuffle over the chairmanship”

6. Castigated

cas·ti·gate
ˈkastəˌɡāt/

verb

formal
past tense: castigated; past participle: castigated
  1. reprimand (someone) severely.
    “Some lawmakers, military analysts and former soldiers have castigated both the White House and NATO for failing to understand tribal conflicts.” ~ The Cheat Sheet

    What are some of your favorite words? 

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Wordspotting #3 and Goodreads.

One of the best ways to increase your vocabulary as a writer is to simply read. I’m always making mental notes when I stumble across great words in books, but I have horrible recall skills and never remember them. So I’ve started marking pages with noteworthy words as I read through books, starting with the most recent one I finished, Sing You Home by Jodi Picoult, in which I found these three gems (definitions from Dictionary.com). A couple were new to me (As far as I can recall), one an SAT flash card flashback:

Gustatory: adjective. of or pertaining to taste or tasting. Example: “Care to share a piece of gustatory paradise from Federal Hill?”

Meretricious: adjective. 1. alluring by a show of flashy or vulgar attractions; tawdry. 2. based on pretense, deception, or insincerity. Example: “One [legal allegation] that calls me meretricious and deviant.”

Mollify: verb (used with an object). to soften in feeling or temper, as a person; pacify; appease. Example: “But hearing that Zoe hasn’t left for good seems to mollify her.”

I’ve also started a Lindsey Reading widget from my Goodreads account in the righthand sidebar. I have read more than seven books in my life, but decided recent reads and favorites were a good place to start. You can read my review of Sing You Home by clicking on the book cover in the sidebar.

What are some great words you’ve found through books? Any good book recs? I need some to add to my to-read shelf!

Grass feather.

I love looking at the world through the eyes of a toddler. While I fear the day he starts saying things like “I hate you!” and cringe at every “No!”, most of what he says amuses and amazes me.

When we registered for our wedding, we were fresh off a stay at a W Hotel and envious of their clean, modern-meets-natural decor. It showed in our registry choices as our bed and bath felt like a hotel room for the longest time (minus the Heavenly Bed, boo). We’ve evolved past a lot of that look, but have held on to some of our favorite decor, like this faux grass piece from Pottery Barn:

There were a few loose blades and Jed pulled them out. He held them up to me and said, “Grass feather!”

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Wordspotting #2

Another installment of a few fun words found around the blogosphere. Definitions provided by Dictionary.com.

Steampunk– 1. a subgenre of science fiction and fantasy featuring advanced machines and other technology based on steam power of the 19th century and taking place in a recognizable historical period or fantasy world. 2. a subculture inspired by this literary and film subgenre: the fashions and gadgets of steampunk.

“Though it’s easy to recognize (look at ModCloth’s Steampunk Style section  to get a bit of a better idea), steampunk is a bit harder to describe.” ~ Life in Style

Smattering– A small amount of something.

“And despite how touristy the monument is, there were surprisingly few Westerners present in proportion to the mass amounts of Indians in a smattering of bright, eye-popping hues who had made the pilgrimage to Agra.” ~ Camels & Chocolate

Petulant- (of a person or their manner) Childishly sulky or bad-tempered.

As in: Bill Compton’s description of his newly-made vampire, Jessica: ‘She’s petulant, dangerous, and scared.'” ~ Au Courant Columbia

Wordspotting #1

This is the first installment in a series I’m calling Wordspotting. When I spot a word on a blog that I like, I make a note of it. When I gather enough to warrant a post, I share them. I’m a writer and hence a total word nerd… comes with the territory:)

Favorite word finds from around the blogosphere this week. Definitions via Dictionary.com:

Twee – Excessively or affectedly quaint, pretty, or sentimental.                                                                  “Instead I went with cute. Like, unseemly cute. Borderline twee.” ~ Smitten Kitchen

Cloying – causing or tending to cause disgust or aversion through excess.
“…I could finish the whole bowl without the taste getting cloying.” ~ Burp and Slurp

Busker – a noun loosely meaning street performer, from the verb, “busk“-Chiefly British. to entertain by dancing, singing, or reciting on the street or in a public place.     “The first involved an African-American busker in the subway. He was playing and singing a song by Coldplay.” ~ Chloe Veltman, Lies Like Truth 

Chloe gets bonus points for using one of my favorite words in her blog title, “A Vapid Question and an Un-Politically Correct Comment.”

Vapid –  1. lacking or having lost life, sharpness, or flavor; insipid; flat 2. without liveliness or spirit; dull or tedious.

Use a word three times in one day and it’s yours! What are some of your favorite words?