A Life Of Fiction CXXVII

For those of you new to this WordPress site, this site is about me and my writing – and a little about my role-playing, as well. It gives readers a chance to sample my work; and gives me the chance to say a little about the genesis of each novel, or about the process of writing in general.


All the words that don’t rhyme: As a poet I like, occasionally, to have lines which rhyme. Not always – I do write some blank verse, and I write a lot of haikus, as well. But sometimes I like to write a good old-fashioned Shakespearean sonnet.

As a versifier I will sometimes come up with (what I feel is) a wonderful line of poetry – only to discover that I have ended the line with a word which has few, or no, natural rhymes (unless you are delving into QI depths of obscurity).

A fish jumps, armoured with scales of silver… There aren’t that many rhymes for silver. There aren’t that many for orange or purple, either. What is it with colours that there aren’t any rhymes for them?

There are plenty of other common words for which it is hard to find a rhyme. Don’t end a line describing some backwoods boy playing a banjo, as it has no rhyme with which to duel. If your verse is of a religious type then you might want to avoid lines ending with chaplain, service or worship.

Have patience in searching for rhymes. Don’t develop a phobia about this.

Yes, all of the italicised words above are ones which have few or no proper rhymes. But you already knew that, didn’t you?

Others include: agent, angel, basic, burgee, capsule, carbon, chaos, climax, dais (depending on pronunciation), decoy, fascist, fertile, garment, hazard, hostile, icon, mayhem, mistress, parent, pastel, perfect, playboy, secret, tabloid, and value. This is just a selection – there are other words without a rhyme.

Note that distress does not rhyme with mistress. They are called ‘eye rhymes’, where they look like they should rhyme when written down. But the accent on distress is on the second syllable, whereas with mistress the stress is on the first syllable.

All of the above are relatively common words. There are quite a few obscure words which don’t rhyme, as well. I’m sure that you can discover some for yourself.

Perhaps, as a poet – but not only as a poet – I love self-destructive urges. Perhaps I simply like making things hard for myself – or writing down a line which I am only going to have to change or rearrange. of course I could always write blank verse. But sometimes I like to rhyme.

Oh, well, where did I put my rhyming dictionary?


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