For my entries in the 2012 A to Z Challenge, I will be focusing on writing elements that I find important and that I want to incorporate into my work.
Today, the topic is LEXICON.
Here’s a shocking revelation: Writers use words.
So to be an effective writer, I have to effectively apply words. That’s all that writing is, really – choosing the right word at the right time and using it correctly. Then repeating that process until I reach “THE END.”
Sounds simple, doesn’t it?
Well, it’s simple in the same way that all Michael Jordan had to do was put a ball through a hoop, or all DaVinci had to do was pick the right color splotch and put it on the right place of the canvas.
Writing is a matter of craft. A master craftsman may have a vast number of tools in his collection, but he doesn’t use them all on everything he creates. He may have several preloaded toolboxes and, depending on the job, he’ll grab one of the toolboxes and maybe a few special tools and he’s off to the job site.
This is what I mean by ‘Lexicon’. It’s the collection of words that I choose to use on a given story. To be the best writer I an, I want to have as huge a vocabulary as possible, but I’m not going to use every word I know on every story. It just wouldn’t work.
Different stories need a different set of words. My setting, plot, style, and characters will all guide me towards which words to use. My lexicon for the story is then is the toolbox full of words needed for this particular job. How I put them together is a matter of craft, and the result will be the ‘voice’ of the story (TEASER: Wait for V-Day for more on this).
I love learning new words and adding to all the tools I own as a writer. But not every word I learn is going to added to a given story’s lexicon. Some may only gather dust up on the pegboard.
Thanks for visiting -- see you the rest of this month for more alphabetical fun!
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