Thursday, October 11, 2007

When hungers pokin' at ya, pokin' at ya...

Or in this case, words are poking at your brain.

So, I think it would come as no surprise to say that I am a dork for new words, or words in general. I am that peculiar student who makes a list of words they don't know in a textbook, looks up the definition and writes it down.

I am prone to using words like thingamajig, thingamabob, whatchamacallits (haven't had that candy bar for a while though) and gall (usually not in reference to the gall bladder).

Interesting situation for me--a while back I thought I created a word--niggle. As in, "this idea is niggling in my brain." Definition somewhere along the lines of 'to simultaneously wiggle and nudge.' It came with the image of that cartoonish bookworm wiggling about as it nudged ideas or words in the cavern of my mind (yeah, I work with visualization a lot, I keep thinking it's going to help decrease my anxieties). So yesterday or the day before, I was weirdly surprised (not annoyed, but not exactly pleasantly surprised either) to see someone else use it.

And then today, I came across this post by Jessica on Bookends, LLC: The Art of Editing.

It's about the difference between copyeditors and acquisition editors with a link to a Salon article. Pretty neat stuff, and with this second mention of the word, I think I am pleasantly surprised, although I don't think I could explain why in anything even remotely resembling concision.

Then again, that's not new.

I may have to politely disagree with one point, though. In recounting a personal anaecdote, Jessica mentions to this former teacher that schools focus too much on the grammar aspect of writing and not enough about writing good papers as a whole. However, it seems to be a pretty common complaint here, in Hawai'i, that the schools don't teach grammar nearly enough, so students reach high school and don't know how to write properly, or they get to college and don't know. I'm in graduate school now and professors still take a little time in the introductory course to teach us our we should write papers for class. And there are 400-level courses on Modern Grammar. it strikes me as a bit strange to need classesd at this level of education, but at the same time, I am intrigued. I must admit I fall in that category of writer who spells well and can see when a sentence looks "wrong" but isn't able to specifically point to the parts of teh sentence which are lacking.

Anyway, check out the post. I enjoyed it.

And yay to new words, even if they aren't as new as I thought.

1 comment:

writtenwyrdd said...

Nice link. Keep on writing as you can. A busy schedule can sometimes be more motivating than too much available time!