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Old 04-14-2016, 09:00 PM   #1
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I'm running out of synanoms

I notice I have a pattern of saying "moan" and "pleasure" a lot in my stories. I also use "ecstasy" a lot as well. Anyone have any better words?
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Old 04-14-2016, 09:12 PM   #2
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I'm surprised you found any word choices under "synanoms" at all.
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Old 04-14-2016, 09:15 PM   #3
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My mom used to mix synanoms and suger to put on our toast.
I thought I was in ecstasy so I moaned with pleasure.
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Old 04-14-2016, 09:17 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sr71plt View Post
I'm surprised you found any word choices under "synanoms" at all.
sounds like it says... synanoms... haha

Ok... we're dam'ed to hell for that.
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Old 04-14-2016, 09:23 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by ChibiFangirl View Post
I notice I have a pattern of saying "moan" and "pleasure" a lot in my stories. I also use "ecstasy" a lot as well. Anyone have any better words?
Here's a thought... rather than describe a vocal cue... describe her body cue.

For example:

As he slide his cock deep insider her, her body began to quiver from the orgasm that was beginning to release. Her mouth opened, her breath panting. Fingers clenched to the bed... her back arching for a deeper filling...
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Old 04-14-2016, 09:26 PM   #6
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Do this:

1. Type synonym pleasure into Google.

2. Look at the list of words in the search result page that comes up: happiness, delight, joy, gladness, glee, satisfaction, gratification, contentment, enjoyment, amusement.

3. Realize that none of them will do.

4. Rewrite in such a way that you don't need to say "pleasure" over and over or read ItalianStyle's better suggestion above, submitted while I was typing this bullshit.
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Old 04-14-2016, 09:30 PM   #7
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To respond to the OP, though, I heard John Grisham respond to that at a luncheon last month. He's putting together an article on writing pointers (saying his publisher wants a book like other authors are doing but that he doesn't have that many pointers to give, so he's only working on an article). One of his pointers was just not to do what you are trying to do. He says to throw the Thesaurus away and not find a new word for every concept each time you use it. He said readers are comfortable with natural writing just as they are comfortable with natural speaking.

I laughed yesterday when someone commented on the first chapter of a story I'm not running on Lit. I was praised for having the guts to use "cock" four times in a paragraph and having it drumming away at the reader.

In another look at it, if you're trying to go far afield from your own word set, you're probably not producing good writing. Maybe you should be putting some effort into expanding your natural word set (and or being really creative and interesting within the word set that you control).
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Old 04-14-2016, 09:45 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by sr71plt View Post
I laughed yesterday when someone commented on the first chapter of a story I'm not running on Lit. I was praised for having the guts to use "cock" four times in a paragraph and having it drumming away at the reader.
Coolest of metaphors. What a joy to be the drum!
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Old 04-14-2016, 09:51 PM   #9
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Thanks. The comment was by Nanobot, who writes great story comments, and the applicable quote from that comment was: "In one singular paragraph, sr71plt deploys the word cock four times, each use like a rhythmic thrust, the words pressing, covering and squeezing lubing up the action until climax and yet- like Mozart, he can't quite end until he's well and truly explored the last element of emotion."
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Old 04-14-2016, 10:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ItalianStyle View Post
Here's a thought... rather than describe a vocal cue... describe her body cue.
I like the advice here, between what ItalianStyle said and what Pilot said. You can use a word repeatedly for good effect, but if you aren't doing that intentionally and you find yourself looking for a thesaurus then there are other problems. You might not need more vocabulary, you might need a different way of describing things. Instead of describing the sound, describe the action; instead of describing the sound, describe the sensation. Instead of describing the sound, describe the effect.
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Old 04-15-2016, 12:01 AM   #11
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The thesaurus is your friend.

Like all friends, it should be ignored at times.

Take it home after it drinks too much and barfs on your feet.
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Old 04-15-2016, 12:49 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sr71plt View Post
John Grisham says to throw the Thesaurus away and not find a new word for every concept each time you use it.

If you're trying to go far afield from your own word set, you're probably not producing good writing.
I use the thesaurus all the time, not for finding new words, but for zeroing in the right word---the word with the precise meaning or connotation that I'm looking for. It's not really going out of my word set, it's that the set of words I'm familiar with from reading is quite a bit larger that the set that come readily to mind when I'm sitting at the keyboard.

Authors often need to go beyond their customary word set to describe a particular cut of clothing or exotic setting or technical situation. This involves some research on their part. It's kind of like that for me when I try to write in a more "literary" register.

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Old 04-15-2016, 01:21 PM   #13
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Well, yes, every time you go to the thesaurus, you're going out of your word set--or at least to the fuzzy end of it. Yes, you have to go looking for the right word now and again--but this isn't what the OP posed. Let's not go moving the goalposts in contradicting previous posts.

I haven't used the thesaurus myself in years. The main reason is that it's in a bookcase behind me and I'd have to turn and roll back to it. I can find the word much faster right there in the computer where I'm working (and, no, not by bringing up an on-line thesaurus. If the word isn't one somewhere in my word set, I don't use it at all unless it's a technical word). And in most cases it's not an unfamiliar word I'm looking for it, it's how to spell it correctly--or to zero in on the precise word that's sort of fuzzy in my mind.

I still hold that if you have to plug in a different word for the same concept so that you don't repeat that word (the OP issue, which were general descriptive adjectives, not technical words for objects), your writing will be awkward at best and will come across as fake. You should be able mostly to write within your natural word set if you want the voice to be yours and not some robot's. If what then is produced seems to elementary to you, your word set is too elementary. Expand it.
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Old 04-15-2016, 02:36 PM   #14
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I think the more appropriate question would be "what is the purpose of the moans, pleasures, and ecstasies?" If they are shortcuts to show how good a time someone is having, then maybe expand it out a little. If they are to reiterate that something feels good, then maybe the point was made already and we're just beating off a dead metaphor.

Borrowing Pilot's reference to "cock", in this particular genre that is a perfectly acceptable word. Where writers can get into trouble is when they start digging for some other word to put there. Unless you are posting in the "hilarity" category, replacing "cock" with "purple headed yogurt slinger" is probably not going to pull off what you were aiming for.

Moan, for example. Do people outside of porn and bodice rippers even moan? I've heard all manner of sounds and very, very few would actually be categorized as a "moan". I've heard "grunts" and "groans". I've heard "squeals" and "mewls". And I've heard a lot of heavy panting and even some "screams" and "wails". One gal sounded like a pissed off Donald Duck. But rarely a "moan"... at least until it's all over two hours later and we are trying to decide if it's worth it to move just yet. Although, there was that one time I pulled something in my lower back and she thought I was really into it.

BUT... most people don't really want their pornotica to read like "Old MacDonald Had a Farm", or a vintage comic with "Bam", "Biff", "Pow" drawn in, so we substitute "moan". Most everyone recognizes this as a cue that "hey, she's having a really good time". The eye doesn't really catch on it, but skims over it, grabs the idea, and moves on to what's next. At least mine does.

Also, a general rule of thumb is that if you gotta look up a word as a writer, then the reader may have to as well. And more often than not, they won't bother.

Having said that, I would never discourage anyone from expanding their lexicon. And if it bothers you as the writer, then that's reason enough to go fish. I would just caution you that finding a synonym should definitely include referencing the definition as well since many words in a thesaursusussus are close, but not quite exact. Or have an alternate meaning that may turn sexy to farcical.

There was an author, and I can't remember just which one since I've read too many "How to Write" books and articles, that said that the writer should never try to impress the reader with their intelligence and command of the language but let the story impress on it's own. I'm still not quite sure what that means, but it sounds like good advice.
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Old 04-16-2016, 01:59 PM   #15
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I use the thesaurus all the time, not for finding new words, but for zeroing in the right word
This.

I often prowl around Thesaurus.com looking for the right word (not a different word). And I seldom find it. Less than one time in five, I'll bet. But I hit pay dirt often enough to keep coming back.

But I agree that it's not the right choice for alternatives to overused words. If you really are overusing a word, it's probably better to rewrite the sentence/paragraph/scene than to start throwing in synonyms and metaphors.
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Old 04-16-2016, 04:55 PM   #16
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Browsing a thesaurus is a harmless way to fill time while waiting for the right solution to come to you.
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Old 04-16-2016, 10:35 PM   #17
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I use an online thesaurus but it gives me the dumbest words. For example for moan I got "cry, beef, complain" and other words that either didn't match the definition I was going for or just weren't sexy. Also how do explain time within sex stories? Thats another thing that I wonder about. I'm pretty sure "after ten minutes of him playing with my nipples" kinda sounds half assed.
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Old 04-16-2016, 11:23 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChibiFangirl View Post
I use an online thesaurus but it gives me the dumbest words. For example for moan I got "cry, beef, complain" and other words that either didn't match the definition I was going for or just weren't sexy.
I use the WordWeb dictionary/thesaurus bundled with the free Jarte multitab editor (for WinDoze). When I invoke the thesaurus for MOAN I get:

Synonyms: complain, groan, grouch, kick, kvetch, plain (archaic), quetch, scold, sound off
Type of: emit, let loose, let out, utter, utterance, vocalization
Types: backbyte, beef, bellyache, bemoan, bewail, bitch, bleat, crab, croak, deplore, gnarl, gripe, grizzle, grouse, grumble, hen-peck, holler, inveigh, lament, murmur, mutter, nag, peck, protest, rail, repine, report, squawk

For passion, the best of those might be murmur. If I follow that I get coo, and then cry and sob. I can explore trees of possible words till (hopefully) something clicks.

Quote:
Also how do explain time within sex stories? Thats another thing that I wonder about. I'm pretty sure "after ten minutes of him playing with my nipples" kinda sounds half assed.
I probably overuse "after a timeless time" but I lean towards estimations of passion-time like "after what seemed like an hour" or "till I could take it no longer". Only measure time if you're clock-watching: "S/he started sucking at 10:35 am and by noon I still hadn't cum."
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Old 04-23-2016, 07:29 PM   #19
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You want some word variety in your writing, but as others have noted here you don't want too much either. Throwing in every new word in the thesaurus usually hurts way more than it helps. That said, get yourself an erotic thesaurus if you feel the need. The Bald-Headed Hermit and the Artichoke comes to mind off the top of my head but I think there are some specialized ebook erotic thesauruses on Amazon. Or you can go a more indirect route with something like The Romance Writers Phrase Book but this is a more an idea book than something you can just cut and paste from, unless you feel like plagiarizing blatantly.

Realistically though, about the only thesaurus you will ever need is J.I. Rodale's The Synonym Finder. It's huge, it does an excellent job of categorizing synonyms by various meanings of a word, and it's great for finding that word in the back of your mind you just can't quite remember.
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Old 04-24-2016, 08:31 AM   #20
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Hi, Fan Girl. Yes, you should get a thesaurus but you shouldn't need it very often. They are useful to help cure the problem you are describing, but it's better to have a good vocabulary. It also helps to have a dirty mind.

For one thing, synonyms don't have to mean exactly the same thing. A woman can derive pleasure or joy or delight from a cock surging into her pussy, but she doesn't reach ecstasy until she orgasms. Another word for that would be rapture.

She can feel herself building toward ecstasy for instance: "As the thick cock plunged in and out of her pussy, Fan Girl could feel her pleasure mounting and knew she was on her way to ecstasy."
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Old 04-24-2016, 08:42 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChibiFangirl View Post
I use an online thesaurus but it gives me the dumbest words. For example for moan I got "cry, beef, complain" and other words that either didn't match the definition I was going for or just weren't sexy. Also how do explain time within sex stories? Thats another thing that I wonder about. I'm pretty sure "after ten minutes of him playing with my nipples" kinda sounds half assed.
There aren't a lot of good synonyms for "moan." I use sob or whimper and I'm always trying to dredge something else up from the pit of my mind.

Time has to be fairly vague. I might say something like "They continued for a long time, with his cock plowing in and out of her pussy." or: "His tongue fondled her nipples, alternating between the precious pink nubbins and spending only a few seconds at a time on either of them."
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Old 04-26-2016, 07:51 PM   #22
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more words

most dictionaries Thesaurus, words like enrapture, enjoyment,enlightenment, magnificent gay (happy) It depends on the context. There are also arcane words.

Do not forget you can you use a whole sentence like His viral, Godlike body lifted her svelte body in the air. As she breathlessly anticipated him to claim her maidenhead. His sex plunged deep into her and filled her over and over until she collapsed in a mind blowing orgasm.

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Old 04-26-2016, 10:46 PM   #23
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most dictionaries Thesaurus, words like enrapture, enjoyment,enlightenment, magnificent gay (happy) It depends on the context. There are also arcane words.

Do not forget you can you use a whole sentence like His viral, Godlike body lifted her svelte body in the air. As she breathlessly anticipated him to claim her maidenhead. His sex plunged deep into her and filled her over and over until she collapsed in a mind blowing orgasm.
Florid writing serves but to weigh down the loftiest of images with the basest of millstones.
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Old 04-26-2016, 11:15 PM   #24
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Back when authors could request Writer's Guidelines (in exchange for a SASE), one magazine that used to publish my stuff had the following advice:

"When describing a person's genitalia, pick a word and stick with it. If it's a cock, keep calling it a cock."

Maybe their editors were dealing with too much creativity for describing his turgid love muscle. That's my guess.
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Old 04-26-2016, 11:47 PM   #25
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most dictionaries Thesaurus, words like enrapture, enjoyment,enlightenment, magnificent gay (happy) It depends on the context. There are also arcane words.

Do not forget you can you use a whole sentence like His viral, Godlike body lifted her svelte body in the air. As she breathlessly anticipated him to claim her maidenhead. His sex plunged deep into her and filled her over and over until she collapsed in a mind blowing orgasm.
I hope you don't use that paragraph in a story. I get a little florid myself, but there are other problems there:

His virile, Godlike body lifted her svelte form in the air as she breathlessly anticipated his claiming her maidenhead. His cock plunged deeply into her, filling her over and over until she erupted in a mind blowing orgasm.
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