Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Word of the Day: scripturient

scripturient (adj)

Having a violent desire to write.

"And as for the 'lady novelist,' who supplies the circulating libraries with endless small reading, one feels that she is a curious product of this scripturient age. No doubt she fills some useful, or necessary, purpose in the subtle economy of this mysterious universe; but what it is, besides making a little money for herself, and providing a stimulus to the trades of paper-making, printer, and binding, one must wait to know until the 'great day' when all secrets will be revealed."
--G.W. Foote, "The Mighty Atom", in Freethinker, May 17, 1896

My, how sexist. It should be noted, however, that Foote was comparing the "lady novelists" of his own day to Charlotte Bronte ("a Titaness") and (Ms.) George Elliot ("full of intellect and power"), whom he called "mighty predecessors".

I can't say I've ever experienced a "violent" desire to write -- though judging from the frequency of posts here, I think you could say I have a strong urge, bordering on obsession. But violence? Let's say you were some kind of busybody censor who somehow inserted yourself into my circle of acquaintance. Would I hit you over the head with my thesaurus if you tried to prevent me from pounding the keys? Maybe, if you were insistent and persistent about it. And it might not be such a terrible thing. Hell, it would give me something exciting to write about.

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