Notes from Crew Quarters: Word Choice
This week, we asked our editors: what are your favorite and least favorite words?
Jacque Boucher, Spoken Word Poetry
Favorites: Loquacious, vivisect, shoulder, guts
Least Favorite: Lover, twitch, slit, lure
Amy Hansen, Associate Poetry Editor
Favorite: till as in to plow
Least favorite: lover
Jen Howard, Editor-in-Chief
I do not like when things or people quiver, though it's a solid enough noun when used to indicate an arrow holder. I love suss. Why does Microsoft Word always red-squiggly underline it? It's a real word!
Jason Teal, Associate Nonfiction Editor
Favorite: bricky, irregardless, JCPenney's.
Least: poignant, quirky
Hayli Cox, Associate Nonfiction Editor
Favorites: revel, savor, luminescent, cling, visage, and crave. I dislike vague words (though I like the word vague) and the words cry, tears, and suddenly.
Sarah David, Associate Fiction Editor
I really like how all these words look and sound: blizzard, revel, ambiguous, horizon, telepathy, moonlight, autumn...I have more favorites, I'm sure. I don't like "moist" or "whine" (though I like wine).
Matt Weinkam, Managing Editor
My pet peeve is any version of the word "thrum." It's pretentious and calls attention more attention to itself than it does to the sound it attempts to describe.
Monica McFawn, Fiction Editor
I love the word "bluff," this definition:"good-naturedly direct, blunt, or frank; heartily outspoken." I like people like that, too, and there isn't really another adjective that describes that quality. It's an archaic usage but should come back. Words I hate? Probably the two word combo "years before" Bothers me when it is used as a transition, and I don't like the sound, either.
John LaPine, Associate Nonfiction Editor
Favorites: orbit, zenith, cells, sluice, crush, sunbeat, apex, salacious
Least: "in today's society," "most people believe"
Willow Grosz, Associate Fiction Editor
least favorite: gray
Ashely Adams, Associate Nonfiction Editor
There's an under-appreciated poetry in scary science words/phrases (yeah I'll cheat a little). Some of my favorites are: Laurentia, coronal mass ejection, extirpation, penumbra. Also hellbender (a species of giant salamander) and warmouth fish. As for least, I wouldn't say I HATE this word but I've always struggled saying the word three. As a kid I'd always turn the "th" sound into an "f" and make it free and I was super insecure about it. I still trip up on it today.
Sara Ryan, Associate Poetry Editor
Favorites: bone, illusion, grip, bread, blood
Not favorites: foam, slit, rut, glob
Alex Clark, Associate Nonfiction Editor
My favorite is persnickety...it's a nice descriptor and it feels really satisfying to say.
My least favorite is solicit. I don't know why.
Patricia Killelea, Poetry Editor
Least favorites: "hegemony" and "jubilant"
Favorites: "stone" and "gruntled"