One of my dreams is to have an impressive and extensive vocabulary. What about you? Words are magical and just the right word can make a story come to life. The English language is complex, yet beautiful. Don’t rob yourself of the joy of knowing it by always using grade school words. Did you realize that a lot of the books that used to be read in grade school are now a challenge for those who are in high school to read?
Writers should have an extensive vocabulary at their disposal, even if they don’t intend to use it. Always have a dictionary and a thesaurus at hand, but it is so much quicker if you know the right word yourself to use. Push yourself to learn more words.
The first step in learning more words is to search for and find words that you don’t already know. Each and every time you write, keep both a dictionary and a thesaurus within easy reach. Besides that, there are several online sites that will send you a new word to learn each day. Use your Google search engine and type in ‘a word a day’ or ‘word of the day’. It should bring up several different sites for you. Also available online are several different vocabulary quizzes.
Besides learning a new word each day, try reading books that have a more difficult vocabulary. For example, books by Charles Dickens and Mark Twain may challenge your vocabulary a bit. When you run across a new word, look it up and try to incorporate it into your daily vocabulary.
Now that you have learned a new word, the next step is to learn how to use it so that you can incorporate it into your arsenal of words. To do this, it helps to learn the etymology of the word and how it has been used down through the years. Review the words with flashcards and self-made tests to help you with memorization. If you still have trouble remembering what a word means, try using memorization tricks, such as singing the definition.
A fun way to learn new words is to play word games. Scrabble is one of my favorites. Crossword puzzles, especially the hard ones, can prove challenging, but they help you remember very short definitions of new words.
Work at learning new words and before you know it, you will be integrating them into your everyday speech. Once these words are part of your everyday vocabulary, it will be easy to use them when you write.