One Word Prompts: Secret – Writing 101

5186_16e7I have secrets. I live with secrets. I’m filled with secrets. I love to keep secrets. I hate to keep secrets. Secrets are part of being a woman still living at home. Secrets are what make a writer considering we don’t have time, nor the inclination to discuss all of what is going on in our heads.

I exist sometimes on secrets. Things I have done that no one knows. Secrets I have shared with one person. Secrets of my own thoughts. I can’t share everything about me, nor do I want to, but when I have to, it’s very hard to keep a secret. Especially at Christmas or Birthdays. Then I feel like I need to explode.

In today’s prompt about a one word inspiration, there was a list of words to choose from, ‘Secret’ being the one I picked.   Then there was the suggestion :

If you like these one-word prompts, consider a Prompt Box: an offline well of inspiration that you can draw from on a rainy day. Andrea Badgley keeps prompts on slips of paper in a Chinese tea tin; I use an old jewelry box I bought from a market in Italy. In whatever vessel you choose, add slips of paper with single words, as we’ve practiced here. Short phrases work well, too.

I want to have jars of prompts. And jars of secrets. Jars of places I want to go. Jars of quotes  important to me. Jars of things I want to do with a man…. That’s where the secrets come in. A wish jar. Jars of wishes, hopes and dreams. Jars of secrets.

ce0623ea7abe8a8aebe6a5ba4384d8a0_2_largeIt sounds exotic and wonderful. A little bit sexy, a little bit naughty, and a whole lot of magical. Can you imagine if you, my reader could reach your hand into any one of these jars and pull out a slip and read what I had written? There would be all kinds of things you could find out. Thank goodness for my secrets.

My journal is filled with secrets. Things I would never tell anyone. My journal is dangerous and I would hate for it to get out. But at the same time, sometimes I wish I could share my secrets with someone. Ah, someday.

Secrets are a thing I like so much that I have several songs with the word in the title.  My favorite would be One Republic’s ‘Secrets’, and The Piano Guys cover of the same song.  Second favorite is Maroon 5’s ‘Secret.  That one. Whew… steamy.  But there are several others that have just hit me over the years.

One day I think I’ll have a row of apothecary jars filled with all my secrets. They will be lined up on a mirrored shelf, behind locked glass doors.  One can look and get a glimpse of the secret, but not the whole thing…..

Word of the Day – Arch

Seven_of_nineShe arched a brow. His brow arched in question.  Arched, as in, brow raise in question, disbelief, sarcasm… or whatever other reason you would arch a brow. I don’t know, just ask Seven of Nine. She did it all the time!  I use arched now instead of cocked because my dictionary doesn’t recognize ‘cocked’ as being a word. Go figure, because something can be cock-eyed, but not a brow. So now I use arched. And when I say I use it…. I mean ALL. THE. TIME.  I probably go overboard, but since I can do it so well with my left brow, I figure every one of my characters should.



noun \ˈärch\

: a usually curved part of a structure that is over an opening and that supports a wall or other weight above the opening

: the raised area on the bottom of the foot that is formed by a curved section of bones

: something that has a curved shape

Full Definition of ARCH

:  a typically curved structural member spanning an opening and serving as a support (as for the wall or other weight above the opening)

a :  something resembling an arch in form or function; especially :  either of two vaulted portions of the bony structure of the foot that impart elasticity to it

 b :  a curvature having the form of an arch
3:  archway
Enhanced by Zemanta

Word of the Day – Murmur

Murmur; murmured.  There are only so many words to use for someone talking softly.  And in an intimate situation, murmur is the perfect word. All my characters murmur at some point. I probably over use the word.


noun \ˈmər-mər\

: a low sound made when many people are speaking

: a quiet expression of an opinion or feeling

: speech or a way of speaking that is quiet and soft

1:  a half-suppressed or muttered complaint :  grumbling
2a :  a low indistinct but often continuous sound

 b :  a soft or gentle utterance
3:  an atypical sound of the heart typically indicating a functional or structural abnormality
I use definition 2b as my meaning of the word, though as I happen to have a minor heart murmur, I suppose when I talk with my doctor, I do use that…..  Moving on.
My hero murmurs into the heroine’s ear.  My heroine murmurs her agreement. I literally use murmur all the time instead of just ‘said’ or ‘said with some adverb’  (Damn you Stephen King for making me restrain myself with adverbs!)
If anyone has another good synonym for ‘murmur’ I’d love to know!
Writing on

Word of the Day — Desultory

James Jones (From Here To Eternity)

James Jones (From Here To Eternity)

I found this word while reading Who the Hell is Pansy O’Hara? by Jenny Bond and Chris Sheedy.  It was in the chapter about James Jones and thank goodness I had my dictionary handy.


adjective \ˈde-səl-ˌtr-ē also -zəl-\

: not having a plan or purpose

: done without serious effort

1:  marked by lack of definite plan, regularity, or purpose <a dragged-out ordeal of…desultory shopping — Herman Wouk>
2:  not connected with the main subject
3:  disappointing in progress, performance, or quality <a desultory fifth place finish> <a desultory wine>
A quick look in my Websters said a synonym was ‘random’, which is what I filled in the sentence with instead of desultory.  It had to do with college classes on writing.  Honestly, I doubt I will remember what this word actually means.  It is probably one that I need to write a small definition in the margins.  I do that occasionally.  With a pencil, mark what a word means. Especially if I plan to come back and read the book later.
Have you run into any fun or forgettable words this week?  If so, post them in the comments. I’m always on a lookout for odd words.
Signing off


Enhanced by Zemanta

Word of the Day — Ill

i-hate-to-waste-sick-days-being-sick-funny-posterIll. Sick, unwell, evil, suffering, distress.  One three letter word that has nothing going for it other than we all pretty much know what it means.  Now that I’m interested, ill always makes me thing of Virginia Woolf‘s essay  ‘On Being Ill‘, though I have yet to read it. I want to, but haven’t found a copy yet.



adjective \ˈil\

: not well or healthy : sick or unhealthy

of health : not normal or good

: harmful or damaging

worse worst

Full Definition of ILL

1a chiefly Scottish :  immoral, vicious

b :  resulting from, accompanied by, or indicative of an evil or malevolent intention <ill deeds>

 c :  attributing evil or an objectionable quality <held an ill opinion of his neighbors>
2 a :  causing suffering or distress <ill weather>

  b comparative also ill·er superlative also illest (1) :  not normal or sound <ill health> (2) :  not in good health; also :  nauseated
3a :  not suited to circumstances or not to one’s advantage :  unlucky <an ill omen>

 b :  involving difficulty :  hard
4a :  not meeting an accepted standard <ill manners>

 b archaic :  notably unskillful or inefficient
5:  unfriendly, hostile <ill feeling>
Why a sick word today?  Good question. Probably because I am ill myself. Ill with a cold.  At least I’m not the ill of my mother…. pneumonia.
Signing off
Enhanced by Zemanta

Word of the Day — Livid

When I think livid, I think angry, but it can mean a color as well.  Who would have thought of using it to describe gladiolas… see below in the definition?  I wouldn’t have. I always think livid and someone is ready to scream, blow up, or storm out of the house.  He was livid, and she knew that if she didn’t shut up, the house was going to come crashing down.


adjective \ˈli-vəd\

: very angry

: having a dark purplish color

1:  discolored by bruising :  black-and-blue <the livid traces of the sharp scourges — Abraham Cowley>

2:  ashen, pallid <this cross, thy livid face, thy pierced hands and feet — Walt Whitman>
3:  reddish <a fan of gladiolas blushed livid under the electric letters — Truman Capote>
4:  very angry :  enraged <was livid at his son’s disobedience
I don’t often write about someone that was so angry they could be described as livid, but I love thinking in terms of that. Go figure.
Signing off
Enhanced by Zemanta

Word of the Day — Bevy

I need a bevy of Owl Posts

I need a bevy of Owl Posts

I could have sworn there was a chapter in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone titled ‘A Bevy of Owls’.  Apparently not.  Bevy. It’s one of those words that means a large group… So for me, a lot of owls, with letters included, means a bevy.  A bevy of deer.  Though apparently it’s more birds that is bevy than large mammals.  Either way, bevy always brings to mind the mass of letters Harry receives from Hogwarts. Wonderful wax sealed letters.


noun \ˈbe-vē\

: a large group of people or things

plural bev·ies
:  a large group or collection <a bevy of girls>
:  a group of animals and especially quail 
You know? I’d like someone to send me a bevy of owls bearing letters from people, friends, acquaintances, people who I know nothing about. Did I ever mention I love getting letters in the mail?  On a side note, I’m not as good at replying to said letters…
Signing off
Enhanced by Zemanta

Word of the Day — Ism

Ism.  A small word that’s more of an ending in some instances than an actual word. However, a word it is.

Ism. Running through the dictionary tonight after thinking about every word that ends in those three letters, I’ve yet to find a word that has a good meaning with -ism attached to it. Racism, antagonism, egotism, extremism, fanaticism, totalitarianism, alcoholism, nationalism, communism, fascism, absolutism,  sexism,socialism, Darwinism….. and some would add in Impressionism and Cubism. I would definitely agree with Cubism, I just looked it up.  Whoo, that is a bit scary.


noun \ˈi-zəm\

: a belief, attitude, style, etc., that is referred to by a word that ends in the suffix -ism

:  a distinctive doctrine, cause, or theory
:  an oppressive and especially discriminatory attitude or belief <we all have got to come to grips with our isms — Joycelyn Elders>
It’s funny how isms usually do not mean something good.  Speaking of good, if you add -ism to the end of good, does the word cancel itself out?  There are a few -ism words out there that do not mean something that is negative, but very few.  It’s amazing how such a small word can make such a big difference.
It’s like that Delta Air Lines commercial ‘Up’. As the first lines say, “Up, a short word that’s a tall order,”. Think about that. Oh, and because I love the commercial, even though it doesn’t relate to -ism, I wanted to include it.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Word of the Day — Chartreuse

Now that's a chartreuse dress!

Now that’s a chartreuse dress!

Ah, color. Apparently this is a color week what with lavender, puce, and now Chartreuse.  There used to be a Crayola crayon that was chartreuse, then I think they retired that name, but I loved using it because it was oh so French.  And a very pretty color.  Why that color today?  Well, driving to the vets yesterday, there was one field that was completely this color. A gorgeous bright spring green. Neon knock  your socks off.


noun \shär-ˈtrüz, –ˈtrüs\

Definition of chartreuse

:  a variable color averaging a brilliant yellow green

Chartreuse trademark

—used for a usually green or yellow liqueur
And another meaning of the word via Wikipedia because I’m too lazy to write it out tonight.  Plus I have All Quiet on the Western Front and a Maisie Dobbs book I want to get into before bed.

Chartreuse (US /ʃɑrˈtrz/, /ʃɑrˈtrs/ or RP /ʃɑːˈtrɜːz/;[2] French pronunciation: ​[ʃaʁtʁœz]) (the web color) is a color halfway between yellow and green that was named because of its resemblance to the green color of one of the French liqueurs called green chartreuse, introduced in 1764. Similarly, chartreuse yellow is a yellow color mixed with a small amount of green that was named because of its resemblance to the color of one of the French liqueurs called yellow chartreuse, introduced in 1838.[3]

I love using or thinking about using this color word partly because it’s fun to say. But it means some of the prettiest greens out there. Like the word mint. I love mint because it’s such a pretty color, or celery green. Yes, I love greens. So, when was the last time you thought about the color chartreuse?
Signing off
Enhanced by Zemanta

Word of the Day — Puce

I think I first payed attention to this word from Monsters, Inc. when Sully has to go find the files that Mike was supposed to file and he mentions the color puce.  Puce.  Such a fun word to say, but it brings to mind more puke than a good color.


noun \ˈpyüs\

Definition of PUCE

:  a dark red


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Puce (variant spellings: “puse”, “peuse” or “peuce”) is a dark red or purple brown color,[2] a brownish purple [3][4] or a dark reddish brown.

It’s actually not that pretty of a color and puke could be puce…..  I can see why the Origin of it is this

Origin of PUCE

French, literally, flea, from Old French pulce, from Latin pulic-, pulex — more at psylla

First Known Use: 1833
If you see fleas, they kind of have this color.  Especially when filled with blood.  Okay, so while it’s a fun word to say, I am grossing myself out.
Hi there, everyone at wordpress.  Am I getting you in the mood today?  Haha!  Below is the color. I’d say more mauve, but hey.
PuceHow to read this color infobox
About these coordinates     Color coordinates
Hex triplet #722F37
sRGBB  (rgb) (114, 47, 55)
CMYKH   (c, m, y, k) (0, 59, 52, 55)
HSV       (h, s, v) (353°, 59%, 45[1]%)
B: Normalized to [0–255] (byte)
H: Normalized to [0–100] (hundred)

So, while I’m not sure I would ever use puce, feel free to for yourselves.

Signing off


Enhanced by Zemanta