2012 in a Vocabulary Nutshell

In a Nutshell2012 has been an interesting year. I’ve worked with a diverse bunch of clients, discovered some wonderful writers and rekindled my passion for creative writing.

I thought it would be fun to sum up the year with a list of my 10 favourite words from 2012. These words either appeared in manuscripts I worked on, something I wrote or something I read that struck a chord.

1. Rhizome (noun): an underground rootlike stem bearing both roots and shoots.

  • Betty held the thick, twisted ginger rhizome out in front of her; unbeknownst to Betty, vampires don’t have a problem with ginger.

2.  Delinquent (noun): an offender (juvenile delinquent).

  • Generally speaking, there isn’t much difference between an adolescent werewolf and a juvenile delinquent.

3. Optimism (noun): a tendency to take a favourable view of circumstances or prospects; confidence.

  • Despite the oozing red bite on her arm Sally was confident she wouldn’t become a zombie. Her optimism was boundless.

4. Idle (adjective): (of a person) not working, doing nothing.

  • When Stephen saw the undead horde spill across his lawn, he too was idle no more.

5. Thanadoula (noun): A person who provides end of life care to people who are dying. Combination of the Greek words thana (death) and doula (servant).

  • Having been undead for several years, Amelia decided to pursue a career as a thanadoula. Assisting the dying was something she had a knack for.

6.  Logistics (plural noun): the detailed organization and implementation of a plan or operation.

  • In order to survive a zombie apocalypse, it is essential that your logistics are foolproof.

7.  Catalyst (noun): a person or thing that precipitates a change.

  • When Alastair saw the vampire emerge from the shadows, he knew her fangs were a catalyst for his life.

8.  Gruelling (adjective): extremely demanding, severe, or tiring.

  • Decapitating vampires and zombies was gruelling work; Sam had definitely earned his cold beer.

9.  Resolve (noun): resoluteness; steadfastness.

  • Watching the adolescent werewolves pee on her petunias strengthened Cecily’s resolve. She had to get rid of them, so she reached for her box of silver bullets.

10. Erstwhile (adjective): former; previous.

  • As an erstwhile human, Harold was surprised by how much he wanted to eat one.

Note: All definitions, except thanadoula, come from the Second Edition of the Oxford Canadian Dictionary (2006).

Do you have a favourite word that sums up 2012 for you? Please feel free to share if you do.

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Image credit: © Comugnero Silvana / Photoxpress.com

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