How to Create a New Word

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Some of the best stories in history have words that the authors made up themselves. Think about Harry Potter and the words “muggle” and “squib.” Think about the Lord of the Rings. J. R. R. Tolkien not only created words, he created languages.

Have you ever thought about creating a new word to use in your story? Here are two ways to create a new word.

O Canada

A very fidgety gosfij. Photo by jurvetson 

The Randomizer Approach

One way to create a new word is to use what I like to call “The Randomizer Approach.”

Take 26 pieces of paper and write down one letter of the alphabet on each piece of paper; all twenty-six letters of it. Now close your eyes and point to five different letters. If you want a longer word, point to more than five letters. Make sure you have some vowels.

Now write down those letters on a different piece of paper and mix them around until it forms a word you like. Pretend that you’re creating a whole new word in the dictionary and write up a definition for your word. Be creative. Use your imagination. Here’s an example:

“Gosfij. Noun. A fidgety goose.”

Voila! You have a brand new word to use in your stories!

The Mush Approach

Another way to create a word is by using what I call “The Mush Approach.”

Pick any two words—you can choose two words that you like or you can flip through the dictionary and pick two random words to use. Take the two words and pretend you’re cutting them each in half. Use a half from each word and put them together. Create a definition for your word. Here’s another example from a different word I made up:

Sizzle + Bubble = Sizbub

Sizbub. Noun. A magical creature that tends to use lots of onomatopoeias while in conversation.

And there you have it! You’ve just made another word. (Joe here: This trick is also called portmanteau, but I like “The Mush Approach” better, don't you?)

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PRACTICE

Use one of these techniques to create a new word.

Then write for fifteen minutes using that word as often as possible in your story. Make sure your readers understand what your word means.

Have fun!

Joe Bunting is an author and the leader of The Write Practice community. He is also the author of the new book Crowdsourcing Paris, a real life adventure story set in France. It was a #1 New Release on Amazon. Follow him on Instagram (@jhbunting).

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90 Comments

  1. jennastamps

    I hope it’s okay for me to post something that I wrote recently instead of something I wrote today… I wanted to share this because it includes a word I made up for my story: “normalquake”.

    —-

    Through all of this togetherness, Neal and I grew closer once again.
    With him feeling secure in his long-distance relationship with Cindy, he seemed more mature now in his friendship with me. I took it
    all in stride, remembering his “unavailability” and being happy with my
    current dating circumstances, and yet I held fast to my pondering of
    what would happen “if only he would give me another chance”.

    Strong feelings for Neal crept back in like children sneaking out of bed
    at night…hoping not to be discovered, and yet with a severe lack of
    ability to remain concealed. I feared that my defiantly obvious
    feelings would push him away again. But those worries were in vain.
    Fortunately, our bonds of friendship managed to supersede any awkward
    emotions despite their unwanted interference. I was grateful for the
    freedom to express my affection to him once in a while.

    If only those silly relationship worries had been the worst of my fears…but no. Another terrible normalquake was impending and fast approaching; it would threaten to destroy the normalcy of my most treasured friendship. This time, Neal was going to be the worst kind of victim.

    Neal started noticing a frequent twitch in his eye. The twitch eventually went away, but then something was
    going wrong with his hands, and he couldn’t even write comfortably. He did
    feel it necessary to go to the doctor, but decided not to wait around
    for the results, as he had an important trip planned–he was off to
    Canada for Spring Break, to see his Cindy, whom he hadn’t seen for 7
    months.

    “Jenny, have you heard what happened to Neal?” Neal’s cousin Andy asked me during a brief visit while I was at work.

    “I heard about him going to the doctor, but I don’t know anything after
    that. What’s going on?” I asked, not wanting to hear any bad news,
    though I had a feeling it was coming.

    “After seeing the results to Neal’s CAT Scan, they sent the highway
    patrol out to get him and bring him home,” he reported somberly.

    “What!? Why?”

    “He has either a large tumor or a hemorrhage in the motor part of his brain, which is what was affecting his movements.”

    I started to cry.

    “What are they going to do now?” I asked.

    “He’s been checked in to the hospital near where they stopped him, in
    Salt Lake City. We’ll find out soon if or when he’s going to have
    surgery.”

    —-
    The story continues…and just so you know, he recovered fully from the removal of his benign tumor : ).

    Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      That’s good to here. 😀 I was getting worried for a second there. Great use of similes. I liked your word. 😀

      Reply
      • themagicviolinist

        Oh my gosh! I meant to say HEAR not HERE. Yikes. Sorry about that.

        Reply
    • Su Williams

      I loved the simile of the little kids getting out of bed… That was very clever.

      Reply
    • Ruth

      I like the little kids sneaking out of bed, too. A great comparison and the whole not wanting to be detected part, right on.

      Reply
  2. Suzie Gallagher

    I just conjure them up in my head and then check them through google that they don’t exist. That is how Talenkynic got her name. If you google it: it comes to my blog. Zylmor is another example – again it comes to my blog.
    My practice though for this goes something like this
    Mwenga huddled her children together in the back of the open pick-up. Tarpaulin covered her feet ready to be kicked over them if she heard the soldiers. Tanba, the eldest girl was of an interesting age to the vicious appetites of them. But it was Cylenya she worried for.
    Cylenya was eight but had the wisdom of eons of women, the Government soldiers were afraid of the ageless ones. In each generation there were eight and Cylenya was the last survin=ving in the continent. It was time for them to congregate in the Desert of Shur-da-Limae at the old temple ruin. Mwenga had got word that Hastic and Neuverd ones were on their way.
    She sang lullabies in the old religious tunes, hushing the children to a whisper, she was so blessed to have a priesis in the family. If they got to the meeting place all her family would be safe. She thought back to the moment when Cylenya at five years of age recited the holy words of the old language, aramaic. Mwenga who like all from her area had been instructed during her pre-marriage course as to how to recognise a priesis. Most of the information was bogus she discovered. Cylenya already had the knowledge needed.
    Last year Mwenga was told by her dote of a daughter to prepare to travel. Special clothes had to be made woven from lambswool, vellum and reeds. The reeds perished in the heat leaving perfect tiny holes for ventilation. Cylenya had to cut her hair with the same iron scissors used to cut the fleeces from the lambs.Once the process began it was tough to keep her hidden from the nosy villagers.
    She didn’t mind most of them but Bazofezzilli was always watchful trying to boost her family’s position and that meant grumgossing with local polthugs. She shivered as she thought of her dear neighbour Mwenko who’d been whipped based on that grumgossing dobber. The poor woman never again left her home, preferring the company of her chickens to humans, even going out to the well at the dead of night. Mwenga would miss her.
    So many changes …

    priesis – priest-sister
    grumgossing – grumbling – gossipping
    polthugs – police – thug

    Reply
    • Karl Tobar

      I like your words.. I kind of chuckled though at “priesis” as to me, it sounds like a U.S. southerner trying to say “priestess.” What a neat story though, the traveling, speaking in tongues, everything.

      Reply
      • Suzie Gallagher

        thanks Karl, didn’t know the Southerners had priestesses, apart from to the god Mall

        Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      I loved your names and your words. I said some of them out loud because they were so fun to say. Like “Bazofezzilli” and “grumgossing.”

      Reply
      • Suzie Gallagher

        the best bit about making up a word is getting a list of one on google! both the ones you pointed out link back to this only. I teach people how to limit results and can get from +millions down to one, never had one to start before
        Great post magic!

        Reply
  3. Karl Tobar

    What a fun exercise. Here’s my practice:

    The throwing axeman wandered across the landscape for days after the battle. The fight had seen all his colleagues killed, fallen to the ground in a bloodbath of rivalry and he’d been the last one standing. Both sides failed, there was nothing to fight for and though the enemy was defeated there was no victor to claim ownership of territory.

    He’d wandered across an open field toward the mountains. The sun sank behind a hill far into the distance and daylight had dimmed to an eerie orange glow over the grass under his feet. He walked toward a faint white dot in the distance and as he grew closer, the speck grew larger, he recognized it as a human skull. It sat atop a pole, its dull gray surface cracked in places and the jawbone long gone. “To ward off invaders” he thought. That meant there were people behind it and he was hungry.

    The path led him into a forest of errody trees, their gray branches grew to up instead of out. The tips of the branches sprouted errod leaves; thick purple orbs full of juice but he was far too tired to climb. Betwixt the trunks a faint glow illuminated a clearing up ahead and he went to it. A man sat at a fire there. “You ignored the skull,” said the tribesman. The axeman said “It wasn’t that scary.” The tribesman belted a hearty laugh and said “I told them that thing wouldn’t work. Well you know what they say. If one wants to remove a head, one will remove a head. Come sit.”

    The axeman explained he was a lost traveler and he was very hungry. The tribesman handed him a plump errod bulb. Its thin, sweet juice trickled down his throat; a cool liquid that refreshed his dry insides. “I’m lost,” the axeman said. “The last one standing from a great battle. All my men are dead, my family, my friends.” The tribesman said, “You need to know what to do now.” and the axeman nodded. “Look at this” said the tribesman. He held a wooden disc in his hand. “This comes from the trunk of an errod tree,” The axeman looked around at the trees surrounding him and nodded. “Makes sense,” he said.

    “This represents the pata, the fate, of the last person to touch it. Set it near the fire,” he extended the disc, the axeman took it and set it down. He looked at the tribesman expecting him to explain but he said nothing. The axeman noticed how old the other man looked; the sky darkening overhead and the fire lit the ground around them casting a glow that seemed to cover the exact radius of the clearing. On the tribesmans face shadows and orange light swam around, highlighting his frown lines and his furrowed brow. He pointed a finger down to the ground at the disc.
    Orange embers crackled and jumped from the fire into the air, tiny sparks that burnt out mid-fall. They landed on the disc. The tribesman began tsk tsking and shaking his head. “This is not good for you” he said. He traced a finger around the wooden disc; its blue rings that indicated how old the tree had been reminded the axeman of the targets he was trained with.

    “This ring represents your sinpata,” “My what?” “Your sinpata. Accumulation of bad deeds. All the ashes are landing in this ring, notice how the bugs do not bite you.” Even as he said this, he slapped a flysquito on his cheek. “Ten or more ashes in this ring indicate certain death.”

    With this the axeman threw his head back and laughed, a manic cackle that the tribesman shared not. The axeman said, “Your magic disc says I’m going to die? That pata is going to kill me? Thanks you for the juice, my friend. I think I’ll find my own way.” The tribesman looked into his eyes, no, he looked through the axeman. Said, “I didn’t say it was ‘pata’ that would kill you. Ginsa! Morhu kin shava!” he belted with his deep voice. The axeman noticed other tribesman emerging from the tents in the clearing.

    P.S. I cheated and wrote for 20 minutes because I wasn’t done. 😛

    Reply
    • plumjoppa

      You worked in several great words and explained them effortlessly. Have to admit that I double-checked a few, to be sure they were made up, because you used them so convincingly!

      Reply
    • Juliana Austen

      I am in awe of people like you Karl who can conjure up not just new words but whole new worlds! I love the way you build the tension, the underlying unease and danger of this place. For me there is a little too much description in the second paragraph but then I confess to being a minimalist! And I noticed the “mania” extra Brownie points!

      Reply
      • Karl Tobar

        Thanks for the critique. You’re right the descriptions weren’t necessary.

        Reply
      • Karl Tobar

        I have to ask will these brownie points be redeemable for actual brownies?

        Reply
    • Giulia Esposito

      Well, I want to know more of the story please! I hate being left in medias res. Awesome practice, you had used worked those words with ease into your story.

      Reply
      • Karl Tobar

        That’s all I have Giulia, I’m sorry! Except, well he doesn’t die. I can tell you that much because I want to make him his own story. Eventually.

        Reply
        • Giulia Esposito

          Maybe I’ll get to read that some day then 🙂

          Reply
    • Debbie

      Gosh darn it! Things have not been going well for me recently. I have an errody tree in my back yard. It’s full of flysquitos. Last week my landscape guy told me that they were messing with my pata, but he had no idea what to do.

      Reply
      • Karl Tobar

        What kind of landscaping guy can’t help you with pata!? I hope you checked his references.

        Reply
    • Kate Hewson

      Excellent writing. I like the imagery of the skull on the pole, and the errody trees. I wonder whether the axeman’s fate was really bound up in the wooden disk, or if he was a dead man as soon as he walked into the clearing,…

      Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      I agree with Juliana, but I think that was because I really wanted to see what was going to happen next that I didn’t care about the description at that point. You have to be careful where you put a lot of description. Usually one or two shorter sentences in between dialogue is a good place to put it. I loved your words. I looked “pata” up on Google just because I was curious if it was actually a real word and it turns out a “pata” is also some sort of Indian weapon or tool of some sort. “Sinpata” seems to be all your own though. 😉

      Reply
      • themagicviolinist

        And I think it’s awesome you wrote for longer. 😉 That means you were really into it. I do that all the time.

        Reply
        • Karl Tobar

          Awe. I thought I made it up. Anyway though thanks for the advice, I will take that with me now.

          Reply
          • themagicviolinist

            I doubt many people know what it is. You could use it and most people would think you made it up. (Which you DID, it just happened to be a real word as well)!

            You’re welcome!

    • Thomas Petri

      Really cool story! I’m sorry I didn’t get to see the throwing axeman actually throw some axes. Next time, maybe?

      Reply
      • Karl Tobar

        Alas! In the very next practice about embracing conflict, you get to see just that. I’ve already promised myself I’d participate in writing a novel this November and hopefully this character fuels that.

        Reply
  4. Tom Wideman

    meisl: noun; a German manufacturer who makes missiles on the cheap by cutting corners. (I came up with this word with what I call the “Blind Typing” method. Just shut my eyes and randomly typed 5 keys.)

    Here’s my practice:

    It was 1945 and Hitler was desperate. Allied forces had defeated his troops and taken back some of his major strongholds in Poland and France. As his General finished briefing him on their latest defeat, Hitler stood up and quickly left the room. All the officers around the table looked at one another with grave concern. They could hear Hitler in the next room ranting and cussing to someone over the phone.

    Hitler was on the phone with his childhood friend, Hans Beiter. Hans was a missile manufacturer in the Bavarian Black Forest region. But unbeknownst to Hitler, Hans was also considered a meisl. Because of his relationship with Hitler, Hans Beiter had secured the million dollar contract with the Nazi’s missile armory. But because he was such a miserly, greedy old cheapskate, he had cut corners on his missiles that had been sent to the front lines. Consequently, before they had a chance to recall the meisl’s missiles, hundreds of them had exploded while being stored killing more troops with friendly meisl fire than from the Allies.

    Reply
    • Su Williams

      I hear a tongue twister forming with meisl’s missiles missing the mark. Good job!

      Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      That’s another good way to do it. Sometimes if my dog is sitting next to me while I type on my laptop she’ll walk right across the keyboard to sit on the other side and that makes a new word (minus the numbers she typed). I wasn’t aware that Hitler had any friends. Meisl even sounds German. Nice job!

      Reply
  5. Giulia Esposito

    This practice got my imaginative juices flowing after a while. Though I’m not sure where I’m going with this…
    ——-

    The princess lay in the leaves, her chest heaving with exertion. She had not expected the sprint to be so taxing. But now that she was in the nethadow realm, she could not rest, no matter how weary her body was. Her journey was only just beginning. But her arms and legs were heavy with fatigue, and her heart raced frantically. She lay in the leaves, the dew soaking into her tunic, and listened to the sounds of the woods. No birds sang here, and the air itself was still though it seemed to hum. She saw no insects, but the humming suggested that they were present. The princess scoffed to herself. Nothing good lived in this place.

    She heaved herself up, clutching at the stitch in her side. It had been a taxing crossing into these realms, and one that she had had to make alone. No one entered these lands expect in a time of great peril. Her reasons were entirely more selfish. So selfish that she had shunned her duty to her kingdom to travel to this cursed place. She pushed the thought away with a grimace. It was done, and she would not regret her choice, selfish or not.

    The princess tossed her hair over her shoulder and looked up at the purple sky.
    Everything was different here. She would have to watch her back. She whirled suddenly as a shriek filled the air. Her hand unsheathed the vauta and she adopted a defensive position. The shriek was manically wild, high pitched and gooseflesh broke out all over her body. The sound was so piercing she thought it would rent the earth, and just as abruptly as it had started, it died away.

    “Only for you, sister, would I brave such perils,” she whispered into the now eerie stillness. She closed her eyes briefly and then, still holding the vauta before her, began her trek into the emetre woods

    Reply
    • Karl Tobar

      Nethadow = Netherland and meadow? This was a great fantasy piece. I wonder what a vauta is.

      Reply
      • Giulia Esposito

        Nethadow is nether and shadow combined actually. I gave a clue for what vauta is, I hope someone picked up on it. I will tell you I just use the random method for that one though. Thanks Karl, this one was fun to write.

        Reply
        • themagicviolinist

          Well if she unsheathed the vauta I would expect it to be some kind of blade. Some sort of sword of knife. Am I right?

          Reply
          • Giulia Esposito

            Well done! See, I knew someone would infer that 🙂 I was thinking of something like a dagger rather than a sword.

          • themagicviolinist

            Ah, right. Was the vauta something you made up with the Randomizer? It’s a really cool word.

            I’ve been reading a lot of medieval fantasy stuff lately. I couldn’t miss that. 😉

          • Giulia Esposito

            It was a randomized approach, though I didn’t take all 26 letters and select at random and rearrange etc etc. I just sat with a pad of paper and made up a bunch of words that started with v and ended with a until I got something that sounded weapony to me. I also like to add y to already existing words 😉 making up words is fun!

          • themagicviolinist

            It is SO much fun! What made you pick the letters “v” and “a”?

          • Giulia Esposito

            Well, a just because it’s a vowel and v because it has an elegant sound.

          • themagicviolinist

            “V” is sort of elegant, isn’t it? Cool word! 😀

    • Kate Hewson

      Ooh, I love it! Great descriptions!!

      Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      Well now I want to know more and who screamed. You can’t just end it here! You should incorporate the next practice you do into this story so you can share more of it.

      Reply
      • Giulia Esposito

        Glad you liked it! I have no idea if I’ll continue this though, it was just something that came to me. I have some ideas for it, but nothing fully formed yet.

        Reply
  6. Debbie

    My Humpffuddle is here.
    Hurray! Hurray!
    They called me from Sneequan’s
    “It arrived today”!

    I jumped up and down.
    Oh joy! Oh joy!
    It’s the latest in vehicles.
    It isn’t a toy.

    I grabbed my Zatznum
    Name and photo. It’s mine.
    The test wasn’t hard.
    I passed it, first time.

    I put on my Yuzznuh.
    I bought it last night.
    The law says you must wear it.
    But I look such a fright.

    What is she saying?
    Her marbles are loose.
    See On Beyond Zebra.
    That sly Dr. Seuss.

    Letters beyond Z
    So cute and so corny.
    I put them together.
    And came up with this story.

    Dictionary for this Practice:
    Humpffuddle (Humpf + Fuddle) – new type of vehicle
    Yuzznuh (Yuzz + Nuh) – license necessary to operate a Humpffuddle
    Sneequan (Snee + Quan) – store where you can buy a Humpffuddle
    Zatzum (Zatz + Um) – required head covering when operating a Humpffuddle

    (This was a lot of fun)

    Reply
    • Carmen

      Haha laughed out loud, would be so cool to see what a Humpfuddle and a Zatzum looks like

      Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      I LOVED this! 😀 So cute. It reminded me of Dr. Seuss even before you mentioned him in your story. Your words were very creative. I think my favorite was “Humpffuddle.”

      Reply
    • Thomas Petri

      That’s some solid rhyming right there 🙂

      Reply
  7. Karoline

    What fun tips! I bet these are great for writing a fantasy novel. Also, I too am a young, home schooled aspiring author. Neat! asateenwriter.blogspot.com

    Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      Thank you! 😀 You’re right, these ARE great for fantasy novels. I’ve been making up words and places and names for all sorts of things in my writing since I write mostly fantasy. Something I’ve learned through the magic of blogs dedicated to writing is to never use the word “aspiring” to describe yourself as a writer. If you write, you are a writer. Good luck with everything! 😀 I want to check out your blog soon.

      Reply
  8. Abigail Rogers

    I think that the “mush approach” would be perfect for creating surnames. A clever combination could give the reader a subconscious impression of the character without using those words in a description. For example, if someone is plump and ruddy he might be Mr. Plumruddy. Or what about white and whispy? Mrs. Whitlewisp.

    Reply
    • Su Williams

      I like this idea too! I like to go to ‘old’ section of the cemetery to find given and surnames. I may have to try this idea tho.

      Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      I had not thought of that. I’m always trying to create new last names but can never think of anything. Usually I think of his or her personality and look it up in Latin. Then I use that Latin word for their last name. Thank you for the idea! 😀

      Reply
  9. Regibald Inkling

    Lovely, although I would prefer Sizzle and Bubble to equal buzzle. This would be a verb, perhaps roaming about aimlessly, meander.
    Upon arriving to this country, I corresponded with a Mr. Jackson. I had read his book, Storytale. He came up with village names and had a glossary of the words he’d made up. I inquired about the development of these words. In his response, he said for some of the villages, he would stare at his keyboard until the appropriate letters bubbled up to him, some came as combinations, as in one country called Favally, the favorite ally. Thus, it appears Jackson uses a variation of your approach.
    For now, I shall buzzle about my apartment.
    I have more.
    Regibald Inkling
    http://regibaldinkling.blogspot.com

    Reply
    • Su Williams

      LOL. This reminds me of JK Rowling’s Diagon Alley or diagonally. She is so clever.

      Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      You’re right, that would have been a good combination. But too late now. The time has passed. The word is now yours and I think “buzzle” is an excellent word that everyone should use. Have fun with it! 😀

      Reply
  10. Karl Tobar

    I remember the first practice I did here at The Practice, and it was your inner editor exercise, Violinist. You have the FUNNEST activities, you really do!

    Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      Aww, thank you, Karl! 😀 Was that really your first practice? Your practices are really good!

      Reply
  11. Su Williams

    I like these ideas on how to create new words. One of my tricks is to go to the ‘translator’ tab on dictionary.com and type in a word and ask it to translate that word into one of the languages on their list. In my second book, I needed a name for the protagonists band. She is of Irish decent and the books have to do with memories. So I asked the translator to translate the word ‘remember’ into Irish. Hence, I got the band name ‘Cuimhnigh’! Also, I needed to name the type of paranormal super(ish)humans, so I asked the translator what ‘dream’ and ‘weaver’ were in Greek. And I got ‘onar’ ‘caphar’. I love to use the translator to create new worlds, species… Isn’t writing such a grand adventure?!!!

    Reply
  12. Yvette Carol

    You know, these made-up words pack a real punch. I guess for the younger reader especially (the genre I write for). Our most famous children’s writer, the recently deceased Margaret Mahy, was well-known for making up words, like Horrokapotchkin (spl?) and in order to rhyme sentences, using words like sandified, dandified, and drowndering.

    Isn’t it funny how we all make up words for our children? It comes naturally. My oldest son I used to call Squidgems, my middle son is Tweeters, and my youngest is Natty-Patty.

    The power of made-up words can’t be underestimated. My mother’s maiden aunt used to tell her stories, and mum can still remember passages in her 80’s that she learnt by rote at the age of 2 & a half. She comes out with these pieces that sound like utterly charming goobledeegook. For instance, in my last birthday card, mum wrote; ‘put on your farthing-locum and come downstairs, for your white-faced simpkin’ etc.

    There’s something effortless and charming about it when it’s done right. I think that’s the really tricky part.

    Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      I agree with you. Sometimes the hardest part of making up a word is making it sound believable. If you use it well enough in your stories by showing what it means and using it often, your readers will accept it as a word and find themselves thinking about using it during everyday life.

      Reply
  13. Ruth

    My practice:

    Jasmine jammed the Audi into reverse and barreled through
    the barely opened garage door. Mumbling words of anger she suppressed a
    curse. Who does he think he is? After all she had invested in making plans
    for a weekend get-away, how could Clay toss it all away so cavalierly and, instead,
    accept an offer to work that Saturday?

    As she backed onto the street, her headlights swept the
    snow-covered yard. She breathed sharply and her thoughts momentarily uncurled from the rage. The koolfro was beautiful! Twinkling like the rhinestones on a dancer’s costume, Jasmine let her eyes flit over the koolfro show. She loved when
    the frost sparkled this way on the fallen snow. The thought was silly, but she
    couldn’t dismiss it’s relevance. The koolfro was winking at her. Playful winks. The way Clay winked at her when hewanted her to come close so he could tease her with some unexpected mischief.

    She shoved the gear shift forward, the headlights now lighting the dull gray of the salt -stained roadway. The brief run-in with koolfro had affected her mood. Tempted to entirely disentangle herself from her hissyfit , she weighed the cost. Letting go meant dropping all charges. He deserved her wrath; she couldn’t pretend it was alright. Yet, she knew he had no idea how deeply his choice had affected her.

    All the way to work, glimpses of glistening koolfro amused her. Her thoughts yo-yoed between anger and understanding. The softerfeelings of forgiveness, reminded her of the twinkling koolfro throwing its haphazard flickers of light into the darkness

    Reply
    • Carmen

      Ooh, I’m thinking koolfro is white snow intermingled with frost and ice, am I right? What a pretty image!

      Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      The koolfro sounds beautiful. And the word itself seems to twinkle as you say it. How appropriate. Great descriptions and your word choice was awesome.

      Reply
  14. Carmen

    This was good fun 🙂
    enigmopous = adj, describes an individual who captivates attention and interest, often winning affections, despite and/or as a result of an arrogant manner. (enigmatic + pompous)

    Ooh, fantastic. More indignant clamouring. I fumed silently as we walked down the main road. I only hoped that Linda, my companion, would not notice the growing audience in the square beside us…

    ‘Hey, let’s see what’s going on!’ She said excitedly, and grabbed me by the wrist.

    The gathering was larger now, around thirty people. A man on a platform in the centre seemed to be the object of the attention. A long mane of blonde hair, and waxed chest revealed by a leather vest with matching pants. Good god. ‘I am a professional,’ he bellowed. ‘Do not, I repeat, do not,’ he took a moment to pause and make eye contact with some of the crowd to emphasize his severity. ‘…try this at home.’ The crowd held its breath while the man grandly held up a zippo lighter and revealed its flame. A girl near the front gasped and he took a moment to give her a wink. In one swift movement he held it to the end of his hair, setting the whole thing alight. He stood tall for perhaps half a second, then promptly dipped his head into a waiting basin of water. The crowd erupted into applause. I snorted loudly and Linda elbowed my side. ‘Come on, let’s go,’ I said as the man pumped his fists like a rock star. ‘I’m not going to watch some fool enigmopously set himself on fire. He’s not exactly unique in his flammability, you know!’ Linda pouted as I pulled her away. ‘Ok, so I admit he was a bit of douche, but that was pretty brave! And you can’t say he’s not good looking.’ I folded my arms as she continued. ‘And hey, did you just make up that word?’ ‘Maybe,’ I admitted. ‘But you can’t deny there’s not a need for it.’

    Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      I loved your word and I loved how your character made it up in the story. I liked the ending, though the last sentence was a little confusing. I’m pretty sure it should be “But you can’t deny there’s a need for it.” or “But you can’t say there’s not a need for it.” Otherwise it sounds like your character is saying there was no need for the word.
      Was your story set it New York City? I’ve seen people do all sorts of crazy stuff like that there.

      Reply
    • Thomas Petri

      The ending made me laugh. Also a great word. I might end up using it.

      You could maybe break the story into a few more paragraphs to make it more reader friendly but that is definitely a minor thing and didn’t keep me from enjoying this anyway 🙂

      Reply
    • Carmen

      Thanks for the feedback guys! especially magicviolinist 🙂 *edits ending*

      Reply
      • themagicviolinist

        LOL. You’re welcome! I love editing and giving feedback (but maybe not as much as receiving edits and feedback!)

        Reply
  15. Christine

    Here’s my mushed contribution:
    ABSNUFFLE, verb: to absent yourself from work by calling in sick or leaving because you’re not feeling well.

    “We were pretty short-staffed at the office this morning after three of my co-workers absnuffled.” “Our boss always has a relief worker on call; she has three cafes to run and someone is always absnuffling.”

    Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      Ha ha! 😀 That’s a great word. There really should be a word for that instead just calling it “calling in sick.” Nice job!

      Reply
  16. Thomas Petri

    This went way out of hand.

    —–

    Fypsca.

    An instrument made from a treetrunk that you blow into.

    Or “fyp” into as the Boramni call it.

    It was long and ornamented with an intricate series of cuts that stood out in the dark wood.

    On the front of its long hollow shaft were several holes that you and your co-fypscai would cover to create the variety of sounds that the instrument allowed.

    If a recorder and a didgeridoo ever decided to have kids the fypsca might well be
    the outcome.

    I stepped up on the box to reach the business end of the massive instrument. The natives urged me on to try and play while Baro, my friend and guide, smiled encouragingly up at me, ready to operate the holes of the fypsca.

    I pressed my lips firmly together as I had seen the natives do before putting their mouth to the top of the fypsca.

    With all the power I could muster, I rejected the air in my lungs and blew it out into mighty instrument.

    A small sound fell to the ground at the foot of the fypsca.

    I inhaled once more and blew fiercely.

    The end result was the same. The sound that came out barely made it to the ears of the first people in the silent circle of natives.

    The chieftain stood up and said sharp words to Baro, pointing at me while he talked.

    Baro looked
    up at me with wide eyes. “You have dishonored yourself and the fypsca. You must
    now live in the children’s hut.”

    My eyes turned as wide as Baro’s. I looked him, then back to the chieftain.

    “Baro, say something. I didn’t know.”

    I blew into the fypsca again and again. Each attempt more laughably ineffective than the one before.

    The stern façade of the chieftain crumbled and a roar of laughter erupted from him and spread to my so far silent audience who joined in. Baro was laughing too.

    A joke? I felt left out.

    They weren’t really going to put me in the children’s hut. Baro and the chieftain had, of course, duped me. They knew I could never have forced a sound from the
    fypsca. To generate the immense amount of air necessary to fill its inside,
    Boramni children practiced from they were old enough to walk, Baro translated.

    The feast continued and now had come the time for the real fypscai to show how the instrument was played.

    Two towering men, that I knew to be hunters from the markings on their chests and faces, placed the fypsca they had been carrying on the ground. The larger of
    the two stepped up on the box that had earlier been my place of honor and said
    a few words and pounded his chest with a closed fist.

    “This is what the fypsca sounds like when fypped by a tempest.” Baro translated.

    The tempest began.

    Reply
    • themagicviolinist

      Wow that was very creative. Nice ending and your word was very fun to say. 😉

      Reply
  17. themagicviolinist

    That is such a cool way to get names! Thank you so much! I always need ideas for last names.

    Reply
  18. Stephen

    Pentultimate: Like quintessential but even better. The ultimate vacation destination? How about the pentultimate vacation experience?

    Reply
    • Joe Bunting

      Great word! Except it’s so close to penultimate, which means “next to last.” I do like quintessential a lot, too.

      Reply
  19. socrates2k1

    Fancation:
    A Vacation whereby a Fan of a specific TV Show/Series, spends time with
    the Cast & Crew, watching an entire Episode or more, being filmed, on
    location. (i.e. Fan + Vacation = Fancation)

    Reply
  20. parrion

    hi my name is parrion i am a boy i am 8 years old

    Reply
  21. Nathan

    Hi guys,
    I m actually writing a book and I need a word which doesn’t exist yet.
    So, I had to create it : Let me introduce the world Toumly.

    Toumly is now an english adverb (not official yet) using to express the way of saying something that we know wrong in the objectif of make the others sad or angry.
    ex: He toumly said that he had sex with the neighbour
    ex: She toumly told him that the meal he had cooked for a few hours was disgusting.

    What do you think ?
    does it look like a word that a dictionnary would accept ?
    Should I improve it and if yes, how ?

    thanks for your help guys

    Reply
  22. Masroor

    I just thought of a new word that I’d like to share. Its called “Philosophityseus” and it could mean some kind of strange creature that is All-Knowing. Right? Anyone with me here?

    Reply
  23. Notachance

    egsidarntoday equalearteal

    Reply
  24. Notachance

    recbunentrcarseller

    Reply
  25. Sulman Shafique

    I am Web developer. I will Design your website like http://www.limocreate.com.
    Or any design you want i will design it for you because i have learned a technique from you so here is my contact (info@webolics.com)

    Reply
  26. Mckenzie

    Wow you guys are great! Has anyone created a new positive english word not in use yet? Ive been looking at some of my favorite words in english and other languages. I love the idea of inspire & aspire in english. In german fernweh. In greek meraki. In danish hygge. In sandscrit Mudita. Finally in japanese yugen. These all have very beautiful ideas to me. I can’t seem to find the right mix of words in english to express them. Any recommendations?

    Reply

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