Hi Writers,
Thanks to all who contributed to “Words We Hate” (see my previous post). Back on this language sensitivity issue, though, I’ve been feeling a bit like an uptight English teacher who’s picking on the bad kids without acknowledging the good ones.

So in that spirit, I’d like to share with you “Words I Love” and I’d like you to share your darlings, too.

I love words that have double oos:
oomph (even though it’s an onomatopoeia and I hate the word onomatopoeia)

I love French menu sounding words, and try to work them into my writing whenever I can get away with it, without sounding pretentious (which is a challenge):

I love almost all words that begin with a Z:

I don’t know why I like these words–maybe one of our resident linguists can tell us why.

So let’s hear it: What words make your heart beat faster?

Keep Writing,

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10 thoughts on “WORDS WE LOVE

  1. Michael Levy

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  2. Elizabeth McQuern

    I have always had a strong affection/obsession for words and phrases that include "dog" and "cat." When I was a little word-obsessed girl, I would talk myself through situations that made me nervous by silently reciting lists of such words: "Dogma. Catalyst. Dog-eared. Catatonic. Dogged. Cat-tail." And so on. Good thing I grew up to be a writer. In what other profession would that be helpful in the least?

  3. Mary Ann

    Words/expressions that make my heart beat faster:

    Steep Grade Ahead (with the picture of the truck going nose-first down grade)
    Wide Load – as a truck pile of logs that don’t look secure lumbers on in front of
    you down a two-lane highway.
    I’ve been meaning to tell you something.
    I can’t find the passports!
    Made in China (food)
    Who ate my last candybar?
    You didn’t want to save that, did you?

    All for now. Mary Ann

  4. Ellis

    For some reason I’m crazy for words like "behooves" and "plethora". Other delicious words are pleasure, stealth, intoxicate, luxury, incumbant, equinox, zealous, gladiola, tangerine and interloper.

    Does anyone find certain letters or words friendlier than others? Z, a, v, j and q always appear happy to me. 🙂

  5. Tom Bentley

    I have some of your same tendencies: I like some double consonant sounds, like "bollixed" and "flummoxed" And I do like the word "beignet" too, though I think I like a real beignet even better. Few pleasures can exceed a well-crafted, fried sugar-bomb.

  6. Debbie

    Although I’m not a professional linguist, I will venture an amateur opinion: you love those words because they are sensuous. They affect your senses on primitive levels and simply make you feel good. What better criterion for love!

  7. siobhan gallagher

    are you still planning to eventually post the Jodi Picoult podcast from the writing conference earlier this summer? Just wondering as I keep looking for it. thanks!