A Word is A Word is A Barrage of Idiosyncrasies


One cannot deny the brilliance of Words and the people they come from (everyone!) One cannot deny the effects they can have, the lasting nuances they can have, whether positive or negative. It’s almost impossible to define the word “Word” in and of itself, because the Word encompasses nearly everything. It’s like trying to define a dictionary. Life is a dictionary.

A Word can tell you everything you need to know about somebody. Whether they are crazy, calm, quaint, an idiot or just idiosyncratic. A Word can warn you of danger or tell you that you’re safe. A Word can describe a time, a day, a life, a song, a sequence or a kazoo. They can rhyme, they can reason, they can define and they can sing.

In fact, Words are a song all of their own.

And knowing how to place them is key.

(Flashback story time): I used to belong to a writer’s group and attended meetings regularly (almost religiously) and participated in events and activities as much as possible. One night, we had a guest speaker. A pretty famous guy who talked about all his published works, fiction and non, and all the things he had done in his life to put him where he is today. He even wrote a text book that is required reading in some colleges, and he’s done some research of grade-level reading. For various reasons I will not give a name, as I am unhappy with some advice he gave and do not want to discredit him in any way, he is a great writer and an awesome guy. Anyway, his advice was this: “If you want to make it as a writer, don’t write anything above a third grade level.” I GET where he is coming from on this. Hell, the New York Times and major science magazines write between 3rd-5th grade levels. Our average reading level in this country IS… 3rd grade.

I was at a 12th grade reading level when I was 8 years old. I’ve spun words since I was 9. I’ve been writing full size novels since I was 14. One of my proudest accomplishments at an elementary school level was being able to read full chapter books by the time I was 7 (six, if you count Baby Island.) His advice was ATROCIOUS to me.

Not just in that it goes against everything that writing and reading is all about, but that he would discredit SO MANY PEOPLE, to say that people won’t understand our writing unless we write so that an elementary school student can understand? How INSULTING.

To me, writing and reading is about EDUCATING. You want to write so a school kid can understand, then that’s ok. But in my opinion, you better be writing a children’s novel.

I learned most of the words I know by reading, and reading beyond my grade level. If you write with the confidence that your readers are smart enough to understand, it doesn’t matter if you’re writing at a 3rd grade or college level. Here’s what I did when I came across words I didn’t know: I looked them up (remember dictionaries? Google nowadays?). Reading at an early age is the reason why I love words and use them. They’re the reason why growing up my two favorite books were a Dictionary and Thesaurus.

Think of it this way. If your reader didn’t love to read and learn, they wouldn’t be reading. Don’t insult them and yourself by bringing down the “intelligence level” of your writing. You’re all brilliant, some may just have never been told so.

So I’m telling you so.

Keep on reading everything you can. Get your children to read. Continuing the education and development and expansion of the human mind is dependent on reading. Don’t be afraid to try reading new things- You never know what you may learn!



“I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity”

-Edgar Allan Poe


cover    For more information on my published novels, click here!

thevillagepoetpress  Visit The Village Poet Press (My publishing company)


Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s