I’ve restarted the habit of writing down any unfamiliar words and then looking them up later. Then, I copy the definition out on a separate sheet of paper to both facilitate memorization and for review later.
Sometimes I just browse the dictionary for words I don’t know. Currently, I’ve 5 pages, front and back, full of vocab words. That’s almost equal to the number of pages I had in my last vocab collection, which I had made the mistake of lending to a fucking fiend. What’s crazy is that the pages weren’t worth anything; he’s just that much of a crackhead that he’ll keep anything belonging to someone else, like a mix between a hoarder and a thief. Whatever, I’m over it now…
Anyways I like making up new vocab lists especially since getting a copy of my favorite dictionary, The American Heritage Dictionary, 5th Ed. (sorry, girls, for getting you all hot and bothered–and wet–with all this DICtionary talk…) It’s the hardcover version, too.
The vocab words are mostly for my own understanding as I come across them in reading. Although I do use a lot of five dollar words in my own writing, one of the best tips for writing that I’ve come across is to use big vocab words sparingly so as to not come across as a douche or worse, pretentious; when you do use a big word, you gotta retire it for at least 6 months before you use it again (especially in anything published).
Since I’ll never have an opportunity to use these in another scenario, here are the latest few of my favorite vocab words:
ecdysiast – a striptease artist
callipygian – relating to or having buttocks that are considered beautifully proportioned (callipygian ecdysiast has gotta be the nerdiest way to say ‘big booty hoe’)
logophile – one who appreciates & enjoys words
Panglossian – blindly or naively optimistic
noesis – the cognitive process, cognition
palingenesis- the transmigration of souls, metempsychosis