Monday, 3 November 2014

A Right Old Shemozzle

I’ve been busy undertaking my Uncle responsibilities this weekend, and my six-year-old nephew has been challenging me with word games. One of his favourite is making as many new words as you can using only the letters found in another particular word or phrase.

It was lovely showing him how to look up words in a dictionary and then watching him read the definitions. And there were times when I came across words I hadn’t heard before. It reminded me of a discussion we’d had at one of the writers’ groups I go to, where we chatted about words that were great to say out loud, or had unusual meanings. Our choice of words in our writing is often quite narrow from the broad vocabulary we know, so it’s a good idea to get the dictionary out and look for new words. (I love the built in dictionary on my computer. Every time I come across a new word now all it takes is a couple of keystrokes to look it up.)

And when you start looking, there are some fantastic words out there. Here are two that put a smile on my face at the writers’ group:

- Shemozzle

- Kattywhompuss

Look them up in the dictionary if you don’t know what they mean. And while you’re there, why not look up a couple of other new words too?

Good luck!

1 comment:

  1. I used to love that game. I remember sitting down with my mum ( I was about seven, I think) with the dictionary on my lap. Of course it was an enormous Oxford Dictionary which was the appealing factor at that age. And the very first 'big' word I learned and used every day at school was 'ambiguous'. I probably irritated my teacher to death as everything was ambiguous. I still have that large dictionary sitting next to my more up-to-date one. I don't think the word twerking appeared back in the 70s. What a lovely memory. Thanks for that.