Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Tenebrific – Wordplay Wednesday™ 10/21/2020

Darkness there and nothing more …* 

Only ten days until our “once in a Blue Moon” full moon Halloween! Are you already beginning to nervously whip around corners, seeing nothing, but left with a feeling of spinetingling spookiness?

Our third week of weird Halloween Wordplay lurks in the shadows to make your days eerie and your nights …

TENEBRIFIC (,te-nɘ-ʹbri-fik; 1785) adj. – 1) gloomy; 2) causing gloom or darkness. [WW #291]

What a great word for your horrific fiction or even discussing the tenebrific horrors of our election! Sorry, couldn’t resist.

As we slip-slide through pumpkin pulp into the latter half of October, we run around the corner headlong toward the tenebrific shadows of All Hallows Eve.

Create your own creepy story with an ominous character … “Quick! Turn away! Its tenebrific stare will turn you to stone!” Or into a bat … or a donkey … heehee.

Tenebrific need not be associated only with Halloween or evil monsters. Everyday writing can benefit from its dark connotation.

“He stepped from tenebrific murkiness to bright sunlight and cheers, after two weeks lost in the cave.”

My thought is to leave the tenebrific mood of the past several months at Halloween’s doorstep. Let Samhain swallow the last of our gloom-and-doom. Rejoice in the light and love of Thanksgiving and Christmas … and a New Year that represents (and may even celebrate) the many changes in all our lives.

Word Challenge: TENEBRIFIC. Be it gloomy or just dark, wrest your mind from the shadows as you fit tenebrific into your week of transformative writings and creepy conversations.

*From Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven” (1845)

Learning knows no prejudices or boundaries, and it isn’t fattening! Expanding your mind is a no-cost, simple joy. Do you feel that way too? What’s your inspiration? Share your creative genius and Wordplay Wednesday comments below.

Write first for yourself … only then can you write for others. (L.Rochelle) 

Cheers to learning a new word today!


Wicked Witch of the West

@PenchantForPen

@Irishwriter

[LinDee Rochelle is a writer and editor by trade, and an author by way of Rock & Roll. She has published two books in her Blast from Your Past series (of three) about pioneering R&R Radio DJs. True behind-the-mic tales make GREAT Holiday and anytime Gifts available on Amazon (eBook and print): Book 1Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The First Five Years 1954-1959; and Book 2Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The Swinging Sixties. Coming soon … The Psychedelic Seventies!]

LR Notes: 1) Dictionary definitions are quoted from Webster’s New World College Dictionary. Yes, we sometimes present them out of “official” context—but that’s half the fun! Think of it as “creative context.” 2) a] Recent dictionary additions to definitions include a date of first use, if known; b] words in small caps indicate “see also.” 3) Neither I (LinDee Rochelle) nor Penchant for Penning are responsible for how you use information found here, that may result in legal action.

E-N-Dzzzzzzzz  

 

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Barghest – Boo! Wordplay Wednesday™ 10/14/2020

What a Cute Black Puppy! Until He Isn’t …

Halloween’s gaggle of goblins, witches, moans and groans are more fun than frightening, and a welcome relief to real horrors of life. Especially if you’re into fiction writing that can delve into this month’s gamut of wicked words. Another ghastly ghoul for your vocabulary list awaits …

"Black Shuck" church of Bungay
BARGHEST (bärʹgestʹ) n. (Eng. Folklore) – a doglike goblin whose appearance supposedly foreshadows death or bad luck. [WW #290]

Though an entry in the 2014 Webster’s dictionary,* barghest is not in the 2020. So be it. It’s folklore … I doubt that it’s just going to go away.

The Northern English folk myths generally depict the barghest as a black dog with oversized teeth and paws with claws to match his monster-sized body; but he can in some geographical tall tales, appear ghostly or as an evil elf.

Over centuries of terrifying tellings, a barghest is generally regarded as a bad omen and may show up as a horrifying shapeshifter. In recent accounts it has come to mean any malevolent black dog. That covers a lot of territory!

Like
cacodemon, last week’s wicked word, barghest is rooted in pop culture. Its canine creepiness can be found in the usual online fantasy games, and mentioned in novels like Roald Dahl’s The Witches. (See its 1990 movie remade for a 2020 HBO film. Believe it or not, it’s a comedy!) And for another TV movie think the Karpf 1978 film, Devil Dog: The Hound of Hell and a dog named “Lucky”—not so much.

Meet "Lucky"

In addition to a howl-o-ween wicked word for fun and fright, barghest is an enticing reference for your fantasy fiction and beyond. Give your writing a scream!

Word Challenge: BARGHEST. Most wicked words are centuries old (this one as early as 1577). Think about their origins, as you fit barghest into your week of howling writings and creepy conversations.

Learning knows no prejudices or boundaries, and it isn’t fattening! Expanding your mind is a no-cost, simple joy. Do you feel that way too? What’s your inspiration? Share your creative genius and Wordplay Wednesday comments below.

Write first for yourself … only then can you write for others. (L.Rochelle) 

Cheers to learning a new word today!

Wicked Witch of the West


@PenchantForPen
@Irishwriter

[LinDee Rochelle is a writer and editor by trade, and an author by way of Rock & Roll. She has published two books in her Blast from Your Past series (of three) about pioneering R&R Radio DJs. True behind-the-mic tales make GREAT Holiday and anytime Gifts available on Amazon (eBook and print): Book 1Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The First Five Years 1954-1959; and Book 2Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The Swinging Sixties. Coming soon … The Psychedelic Seventies!]

*LR Notes: 1) Dictionary definitions are quoted from Webster’s New World College Dictionary. Yes, we sometimes present them out of “official” context—but that’s half the fun! Think of it as “creative context.” 2) a] Recent dictionary additions to definitions include a date of first use, if known; b] words in small caps indicate “see also.” 3) Neither I (LinDee Rochelle) nor Penchant for Penning are responsible for how you use information found here, that may result in legal action.

E-N-Dzzzzzzzz  


 

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Cacodemon – Boo! Wordplay Wednesday™ 10/07/2020

Playing with Weird Words of Howl-o-ween Month! 

Welcome to our 1st week of 2020’s weirdly wonderful Howl-o-ween words! In the mood to get spooky? We’re here to help …

CACODEMON [or cacodaemon] (kakʹō dēʹmɘn; 1594) n. – an evil spirit: demon. [WW #289]

Ah, this Howl-O-Ween word comes to us from the Ancient Greeks. Which makes it really old. Besides its evil spirit, a cacodemon is believed to count shapeshifting in its spooky repertoire.


As with many words of demonic implications cacodemon is often associated psychologically, with belief in spirit possession, and the host subject labeled insane. Hmmm, define insane.

Particularly appropriate for fiction, cacodemon begins the month of words that may surprise you in the many ways they’ve already been inserted into our lives. Of course, books and TV series abound with cacodemons, and we likely gloss over the word. You may recognize it, but do you truly understand its role? (Image/left: A cacodemon from 1863 Dictionnaire Infernal.)

Remember the death metal bands of the 1980s and ‘90s? “Caco-Daemon” appears in a song title … in its one-word form, it has been shapeshifted through a multitude of video games … and given evil inspiration to abstract artist, Paul Klee, whose interest in art of the mentally ill was reflected in his 1916 work, Cacodemonic. (Image right: Paul Klee's abstract art.)

Whatever your beliefs, October is a great month to explore your writing and create space for the cacodemons of this world, otherworlds and netherworlds, along with all of October’s wonderfully weird words. Horror, Sci-Fi, and fantasy buffs unite!

Word Challenge: CACODEMON. The glory of this word and its shapeshifting capabilities, is you can create its persona in any form, as you fit cacodemon into your week of horrific writings and creepy conversations.

Learning knows no prejudices or boundaries, and it isn’t fattening! Expanding your mind is a no-cost, simple joy. Do you feel that way too? What’s your inspiration? Share your creative genius and Wordplay Wednesday comments below.

Write first for yourself … only then can you write for others. (L.Rochelle) 

Cheers to learning a new word today!


Wicked Witch of the West
@PenchantForPen

@Irishwriter

[LinDee Rochelle is a writer and editor by trade, and an author by way of Rock & Roll. She has published two books in her Blast from Your Past series (of three) about pioneering R&R Radio DJs. True behind-the-mic tales make GREAT Holiday and anytime Gifts available on Amazon (eBook and print): Book 1Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The First Five Years 1954-1959; and Book 2Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The Swinging Sixties. Coming soon … The Psychedelic Seventies!]

 

*LR Notes: 1) Dictionary definitions are quoted from Webster’s New World College Dictionary. Yes, we sometimes present them out of “official” context—but that’s half the fun! Think of it as “creative context.” 2) a] Recent dictionary additions to definitions include a date of first use, if known; b] words in small caps indicate “see also.” 3) Neither I (LinDee Rochelle) nor Penchant for Penning are responsible for how you use information found here, that may result in legal action.

 

E-N-Dzzzzzzzz