Here’s a useful article from lifehack.org. I learned so much from this.
My favorite is item #20: plethora.
What you think it means: A lot of something.
What it really means: More than is needed.
Plethora simply means that there is more of something than is needed. For instance, you may think that 5,000 people is a plethora of people. However, when you put them into a hockey arena that seats 13,000 people, it’s actually less than half capacity and therefore not a plethora. If you had 13,500 people in that same arena, that would be a plethora of people.
Read on and weep.
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From “The man who can’t stop writing” written by Ruel S. De Vera for the Philippine Daily Inquirer
The Write Stuff
Prolific and versatile wordsmith Ed Maranan on how to keep those ideas going and your words flowing
1. Be aware of, and be sensitive to, what is happening in your country and in the world. Read up on the themes and issues of our times: the environment and climate change, poverty and development, crime and conflict, politics and corruption, etc. This means reading the dailies, listening to the radio, watching the news and commentaries to stock up on materials for your writing.
2. Keep a journal or a diary that record your thoughts and ideas. Jot down notes, observations about life, impressions of places and people you meet, and reactions to day-to-day events. Again, they can become the source of future writing projects.
3. Read as often and as diversely as possible: literature and the arts, science and social science, articles and reviews. Less expensive is browsing the web for literature and history websites.
4. Write something every day, wherever you are. It could be a six-word, 55-word, 100-word short story (there are actually websites and competitions for these variant forms!), a short essay commenting on the issue of the day, or a short poem (a haiku or a tanaga). Re-read and revise what you have written. If you write in English, check out manuals on writing good prose by Jose Carillo, Jose Dalisay, Cristina Hidalgo and other authors.
5. Do any or all of the following: join a writing workshop or a writers’ group, show your written work to friends, relatives or teachers and ask for their critique. Cross-register or audit in creative writing, literary history and theory classes, start a blog where your creative output can be read and judged by the public, participate in poetry readings and yes, you can put to the test what you’ve written by joining a literary competition: the Carlos Palanca, the Free Press and the Graphic, the Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino, among many others.
“When in doubt, take it out.”
(Barbara DaCosta, Resort to Murder: Thirteen More Tales of Mystery by Minnesota’s Premier Writers)
2. Write more.
3. Write even more.
4. Write even more than that.
5. Write when you don’t want to.
6. Write when you do.
7. Write when you have something to say.
8. Write when you don’t.
9. Write every day.
10. Keep writing.”
(Brian Clark, author of Whose Life Is It Anyway?)
Mark Nichol writes about 100 beautiful and ugly words at Daily Writing Tips.
He says these words enrich the poetry of prose by providing precise connotation while also evoking emotional responses. “One of the many fascinating features of our language is how often words with pleasant associations are also quite pleasing on the tongue and even to the eye, and how many words, by contrast, acoustically and visually corroborate their disagreeable nature — look no further than the heading for this post.”
Amorphous: indefinite, shapeless
Cascade: steep waterfall
Cashmere: fine, delicate wool
Chrysalis: protective covering
Cinnamon: an aromatic spice; its soft brown color
Coalesce: unite, or fuse
Crepuscular: dim, or twilit
Crystalline: clear, or sparkling
Desultory: half-hearted, meandering
Epitome: embodiment of the ideal
Ethereal: celestial, unworldly, immaterial
Etiquette: proper conduct
Exuberant: abundant, unrestrained, outsize
Felicity: happiness, pleasantness
Filament: thread, strand
Idyllic: contentedly pleasing
Incorporeal: without form
Incandescent: glowing, radiant, brilliant, zealous
Ineffable: indescribable, unspeakable
Languid: slow, listless
Lilt: cheerful or buoyant song or movement
Lithe: flexible, graceful
Lullaby: soothing song
Luminescence: dim chemical or organic light
Mellifluous: smooth, sweet
Mist: cloudy moisture, or similar literal or virtual obstacle
Murmur: soothing sound
Myriad: great number
Penumbra: shade, shroud, fringe
Quintessential: most purely representative or typical
Redolent: aromatic, evocative
Resonant: echoing, evocative
Rhapsodic: intensely emotional
Sapphire: rich, deep bluish purple
Somnolent: drowsy, sleep inducing
Sonorous: loud, impressive, imposing
Spherical: ball-like, globular
Sublime: exalted, transcendent
Succulent: juicy, tasty, rich
Suffuse: flushed, full
Symphony: harmonious assemblage
Talisman: charm, magical device
Tessellated: checkered in pattern
Zenith: highest point
Cacophony: confused noise
Cataclysm: flood, catastrophe, upheaval
Chafe: irritate, abrade
Coarse: common, crude, rough, harsh
Cynical: distrustful, self-interested
Decrepit: worn-out, run-down
Disgust: aversion, distaste
Grimace: expression of disgust or pain
Grotesque: distorted, bizarre
Hoarse: harsh, grating
Mediocre: ordinary, of low quality
Obstreperous: noisy, unruly
Rancid: offensive, smelly
Shriek: sharp, screeching sound
Shrill: high-pitched sound
Shun: avoid, ostracize
Slaughter: butcher, carnage
Unctuous: smug, ingratiating
Visceral: crude, anatomically graphic
Avoid long sentences.
(From Sylvia @ Daily Writing Tips)
Use others writer’s sentences and paragraphs as models and then emulate the syntactic structure with your own content. I’ve learned more about grammar and punctuation that way.
(From Shelley Rodrigo @ Daily Writing Tips)