Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Reviewing A Thesaurus

A Most Important Tool For Writing

writing desk
Writing Center image courtesy of Pixabay.com
My decision to review a thesaurus in today's post might seem a little lame at first glance. Stick with me for a bit and you will see why I think that every home and office should have at least one available.

I, along with the other reviewers here at Review This, do quite a lot of writing. Most of us write a post here each week while maintaining our own sites in other locations on the web. It would not be far-fetched for me to assume that each of us probably has at least one thesaurus that we refer to often. Mine is sitting right here next to me as I compose this post. I pick it up and use it several times every single day.

Now, I realize that not everyone considers themselves writers, as we do, but that isn't exactly the case. Adults frequently need to compose a letter or a report pertaining to their jobs. (You should know that I just picked up my thesaurus to find a better word for often and decided on frequently in that last sentence.) College students are required to write a term paper for some of their classes. A thesis might be required for many degrees. High school, middle school and even elementary school students will need to write reports about different subjects during the years that they attend school. In all of these instances the person is temporarily a writer. 

Certainly, we all have the option of looking up words (synonyms or antonyms) on an online thesaurus. Those have been available for quite a while. My preference is an actual book that I can pick up and search through quickly. I don't have to open a new window or switch screens. My writing is still in front of me and I can return to it swiftly. (I just used my thesaurus again choosing swiftly over quickly.) See how that works?

Personally, I think that if we encourage our young students to get into the habit of using this tool for their writing needs; we are also helping them practice searching for words in alphabetical order along with spelling skills. Adults will be better adept at this but even they learned at one time the order of the alphabet when looking a word up. Whether the writer is very young, middle-aged or even elderly their finished product will be a much better piece if they have taken a few minutes to find a variety of words to use in their text. Can anyone remember a paper returned from the teacher with several red marks and a note that says, "You used this word 15 times! Choose different words from time to time."

As a writer, it is my desire, to create a pleasant reading experience for anyone who might read what I have written. I don't want to sound repetitive or appear that I have a very small vocabulary. I think whether it is a conscious goal or not; most people who are writing something want it to be received well. A thesaurus can be invaluable for that very purpose.

It is probably no surprise that I think that giving a child a tool that will help them write better is a very good idea. They may not be looking to make a career out of writing but they will from time to time be required to write something. That "something" will be better if they know how to find synonyms to use to say the same thing in a different way. A by-product is that they will have a much better vocabulary.

As I stated before; I use my thesaurus regularly each day. I have found it extremely helpful as I work on my soon to be published mystery book. 




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

5 comments:

  1. A thesaurus is definitely a book that is an absolute must in every home! I use mine daily. Even if I am just writing a note card to someone, I find it helpful so my comments and words are not redundant.

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  2. A great tool to have Bev. I use mine all the time that is built into my Word software. I'd say a thesaurus is a must have for anybody. Thanks! Great Review as always :)

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  3. I can still remember the first time I ever saw a thesaurus, it was my first year of high school and my best friend brought a Roget's Thesaurus into English class......in no time at all I had popped down to the local bookstore and brought my own and found myself lost in it as though it was a new novel!

    Well that sounds a little nerdy! I don't use my book much these days as I use the thesaurus that's built into Word, but I think it's a must have for every household.

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  4. I agree. A thesaurus is definitely a necessity in every household. My grandfather gave me one when I left for college to major in journalism. It was... and continues to be to this day... a most helpful tool.

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  5. It's a tool we have handy in our home as well. Used it many times, and the boys too when they were in school. These days I'll use the online thesaurus quite often.

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