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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Conniption Fit

I grew up hearing about these from my parents.

“Don’t throw a conniption fit!”

“You don’t want me having a conniption fit and whoppin your butt!”

I am of the age that my parents were Baby Boomers, that group of children born during World War II. The group that got the distinction of living their teenage years in the Golden Nostalgic 1950’s and early 60’s. The Golden Age of Rock and Roll.

Today’s Dictionary Word from Dictionary dot com, is conniption!

conniption \kuh-NIP-shuhn\, noun:
A fit of hysterical excitement or anger.

Conniption is actually an invented word. It first appeared in America in 1833 and may be related to the word corruption which was use in the sense of "anger" in the early 1800s.

What makes this word so special to do blog post on it?

I am glad you asked!

It ties together the concept I mentioned in an earlier post about asking questions about the things you run across in everyday life. It deals with English, the supply and tools we writers use to craft our stories together with, and even though I may spin a fair tale, I struggle with English. Let me rephrase that. I have trouble using English correctly through my ignorance of the rules accorded to what is considered proper usage.

Read the definition above again.

Aren’t all words, invented words? Somebody somewhere in our past had to have made the word up and described it’s meaning to somebody else.
I’ve read the Bible and it doesn’t say anywhere in Genesis that God created the Dictionary. Man created, invented, made up every word of every language.

Somebody later who was more OCD than me decided we needed them written down into a book. A groups of people who were so full of it and themselves decided what was correct and proper and how to judge good from bad. Then this was assembled in other books and taught in school. While many people throughout history and even today get the benefit of a full spectrum well-rounded education, but most people of the world do not. Most of the people doing the writing and reading don’t have a college education. Through time we have adjusted the rules to include what is widely used and accepted into the rule system. So just after 1833 the use of conniption may have been considered slang, uncouth, and not proper English, it is in the dictionary today and most people have heard the word and know what it implies.

Frankly I don’t think before today I have ever used the word in writing.
It catches me as humorous, that many of the Great Writers were not considered Great at the time of their works being published but years later were read and accepted as Classic or Great Authors! Could it be that the authors were like myself and could tell a good tale but their English skills were not up to snuff for those that grade works on aspects of English at that time; but when enough bad English becomes good English over time the way the work is viewed changes as does our vocabulary. Hell, I may be a classic author someday when the language degrades to the point my writing is a shining example of literary work.

With the state of Education in Kansas City, which at the end of 2011, lost its accreditation as a public school system, my work may make Masterpiece Status in my lifetime!

I joke about English, but I do take the errors in my books seriously and plan to have them re-edited at the earliest opportunity. I don’t have the skills myself at this point to determine what is correct and what is not. I am studying English and learning more every day, so that by the time I hit the million word mark my work will be Great. Not good, not just acceptable, but Great and will do the Great stories I have in store for my readers the justice they rightly deserve. As writers part of honing our skills and polishing our craft is providing the best work we can to our readers. Unfortunately for my readers and followers what you’re reading is my best, but I am getting professional help, and being schooled. I hope the stories make up for the English deficiencies.

In fifty years the way they are they will seem much better! I crack myself up sometimes!


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