The plan was simple: write a swift, introductory blog post today. Yet, as so often happens with writing, my ideas led me from a meandering mental stroll to delving down a rabbit-hole. Unearthed at the bottom of that cave of quandary? Heteronyms.
It began innocently enough, typing my post’s title: ‘Minute Musings.’
Now I had a title but no content. How many times has that happened to me as a writer: a snappy title in my head but the graft of writing the damn thing has been far from fleshed out?
I repeated it aloud a few times: ‘Minute Musings.’
Wait. Is that ‘minute’ meaning small or ‘minute’ denoting time? Am I producing a bitesize piece in terms of word-count or was it written in sixty seconds? And does it even matter? No.
But volleying this pronunciation debate in my head proved a useful jumping-off point, instantly generating content. I needn’t stare at a blank screen, I’ll simply post about heteronyms.
So…want to brush up on your vocabulary of words that are spelled the same but pronounced differently? Perhaps you have once shot an arrow from a bow off the bow of a boat. Or the desert was so hot, you felt determined to desert it.
Oh–but my rabbit hole expanded, leading to the consideration of another confusing word concept: enter the alternative homonym, a word spelled and pronounced the same but contrasted in meaning. Consider a kind of monkey notorious for being kind. A stalk of broccoli who you stalk on a dark night. A rose in your mother’s garden which rose to greet the sun every morning last summer. The man who lies to his wife, then lies back in his comfy chair.
[Actually, the mere exercise of compiling a list of heteronyms and homonyms (above) served as useful story prompts. Already this blog has netted abundant uses.]
For years, my favourite medium for writing had been notepad and a slick-rolling pen.
Then I conquered Word at speed.
But a blog has thus far proven an elusive means for expression.
Whether mi-NOOT or typed in a MINN-utt, I am grateful to you for having read–or for taking time to read–my musings.