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VocabuLeery
Take Ten for Writers Exercises : VocabuLeery

Take Ten for Writers • No. 95

VocabuLeery

By Bonnie Neubauer

Look at the words below, numbered 1 though 10. Pick one that appeals to you and, even though you probably don’t know the definition, make up a definition for it. Write the number, the word, and the definition on the top of your paper.

  1. Bombycid
  2. Endemic
  3. Yardages
  4. Scalping
  5. Gulag
  6. Allonym
  7. Bolides
  8. Roux
  9. Echoless
  10. Peculiar

Use this word as you have defined it in the first half of your story, starting with:

Although I was a bit leery about what might be behind it, I went ahead and …

Now TAKE FIVE minutes (or half of your writing time or page count) and WRITE until you are at the middle of your allotted time or page count … and then STOP and return to this book. THEN …

VocabuLeeryGo to the VocabuLeery list below to find the same number you chose earlier. Beside it is the real definition to use in the second half of your writing. Use this definition word for word, exactly as it is written in italics (but don’t use the actual word).

VocabuLeery List

Find your number here. Beside it is the real definition to use in the second half of your writing. Use this definition word for word, exactly as it is written in italics (but don't use the actual word) to complete the second half of your story.

  1. Bombycid: pertaining to silk
  2. Endemic: of foreign origin
  3. Yardages: monks who wander from monastery to monastery
  4. Scalping: an ancient Greek trumpet
  5. Gulag: the empty part of a partially filled liquor container
  6. Allonym: ghostwritten
  7. Bolides: a shooting star
  8. Roux: semi-rotten
  9. Echoless: sickness resulting from overcrowded living conditions
  10. Peculiar: cup-shaped

Now TAKE FIVE minutes and WRITE to complete the second half of your story using the italicized definition (but not the actual word).

Take Ten for Writers by Bonnie NeubauerDownload VocabuLeery Exercise (PDF)
This printable writing exercise is published with permission from Take Ten for Writers © 2009 Bonnie Neubauer. All rights reserved.

TAKE TEN Take-Away

When it comes to VocabuLeery, a thesaurus is a writer’s best friend. January 18 is Thesaurus Day, in honor of Peter Roget, author of Roget’s Thesaurus, born on said date in 1779. Mark your calendar now so you can throw a party (bash, do, shindig, soiree, wing ding, festivity, affair, banquet, celebration, dinner, fete, gala, reception) for all your word-loving friends to party (revel, carouse, frolic, blow off steam, kick up one’s heels, let loose, live it up, raise Cain, paint the town red, whoop it up, make merry) the night away. •

Next: Super Wordacious »

Bonnie NeubauerBonnie Neubauer is the inventor of the Story Spinner and author of the revised and expanded deluxe edition of The Write-Brain Workbook. More »

10/18/13