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Welcome to my self-indulgent location for the stories (good and bad) that I can't prevent myself from writing. All comments and criticisms welcome. I post on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Frak (#atozchallenge)

Welcome to today's post on the A-to-Z Blogging Challenge. My challenge, as I have chosen to accept it, is thus: I have asked on my Facebook and Twitter accounts for people to contribute random words beginning with today's letter. From Random.org, I have selected one of these words, and will below challenge myself to connect said word to writing.

For the letter F, I received 63 suggestions. Random.org selected number 10: frak.


Frak

What the frak am I talking about? Frak's not a real word. How could this end up as the topic of my blog post today?

Frak, as you may or may not know, is the swear word of choice for the characters from Battlestar Gallactica. According to Wikipedia, I can mean any of our three main 4-letter words (you know, starting with F, S, and D, respectively) for the poor victims of the Cylon Wars. And the best part about the word "frak"?

It doesn't get bleeped.



Creating terms for our fiction can be useful, especially with profanity, as it's not as necessary to define it. The meaning of expletives can be gleaned by the reader by context alone, without lengthy exposition. For example, in my own fiction, my characters have two main swear words: "sprick" as in "that sprickin' jerk" or just plain "Sprick!" and "frut", which is more of a noun and less a verb.

Other words may require greater explanation. In my own personal writing journey, I recently discovered this during the Nature of Magic Blogfest, hosted by Tessa Conte and Laura Diamond In this excerpt, my character "veiled" herself. In my mind, that was perfectly clear—she used magic to create a false image around her (in this case, the image of nothing at all), kind of like putting a jacket on a book. What I hadn't anticipated was that other people would read this as meaning "invisibility cloak". What does that mean? I didn't define my term well enough.

Back to the drawing board for me :)

Do you coin new terms in your fiction? What kinds of terms? Profanity, or basic penny words?

PS--Today I'm taking suggestions for J. Have some? Leave them below. 

14 comments:

Talli Roland said...

I LOVE frak! It's so expressive.

Hm, I'm struggling to think if I've created any new words. None that I'm aware of!

Elena Solodow said...

I love coming up with new slang for my fiction - it's a lot of fun! But I don't know if I can ever beat Frak!

Christine Murray said...

Wow, I'd never even heard of that. I'm going rob it as my word of the day, though. I love it!

Lily of Darkness said...

My fave J words?

JUXTAPOSITIONS
JOSHED
JOWL
JELLYBEANS
JAVA
JAVELIN
JAUNT

ok, those are my fave J words. Yes I have a list of fave words. By letter.

And I like the use of made up words as curse words. I used to have a very bad potty mouth (toned down a lot these days) and it took me what felt like forever to get used to saying "Cheese and Crackers!" instead of other things when I was mad.

Marjorie said...

It's like gorram in the Firefly series. :-)

Margo Lerwill said...

Serious double standard on this issue! :) In sci-fi, we have frak and gorrum. In fantasy, editors usually won't let us make up swear words. Hmm, maybe because ours don't come out sounding quite as cool as frak and gorrum. Ah, perhaps I grok... :)

TheyCallMeVarmit said...

Frak is an awesome word. Good "F" post!

Matthew Vanacore said...

Great post and I love that it's interactive. It may not be an official word, but that doesn't undermine its shear awesomeness. Frak the dictionary anyway.

Heidi Windmiller said...

I like Frak!

I always use the word "sype" in my novels. It annoys me because it comes up as different things. In one novel, the characters use it like cool. In another, it is a kind of drug that can render you unconscious.

I've started to use sype when talking to people not in my novels--as in "Wow, that's totally sype." No one ever says anything about it.

Claire Goverts said...

I love the word Frak, BSG made up a good word to use for cursing.

I haven't made up any words yet for my novels, though I probably will at some point.

nutschell said...

Hey rosie! Thanks for dropping by my blog. I just followed you bec. i forgot to do that the first time i visited. anyhoo, I don't remember if I've ever created a new word for my book--but since I write MG fantasy, I've definitely come up with several new words to describe new places and experiences.
nutschell
www.thewritingnut.com

Jules said...

Well my frakken cell phone died. I forgot that one :) "J" as in Jules or Jewels (LOL)
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

doreen said...

Frak is a word I use often. I really enjoyed your post and the creative way you chose the word. I cannot wait to switch to fiction writing!

Jerri said...

I knew immediately because I'm a big fan of Battlestar Galactica.....started watching the very first one. Almost wrote about Cylons for the C word.

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