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  • Writer's pictureTracey Lee

The 'W' Words

For those of you who read the Lily O’Hara series it would be hard not to note that the titles all begin with the letter W. What Remains, Wither and the upcoming Welter are named to provide a sense of Lily’s experiences in the time and place she finds herself. Welter means to rise and fall or be tossed about in the waves or to be in turmoil. It certainly works in the context of the novel.

You may ask why ‘W’? I certainly ask myself that question because the ‘w’ words are somewhat troublesome and sometimes hard to find. The first three have been reasonably easy but the test is to find other suitable ‘W’ words for the books to follow. Two others in the series are planned.

I’m not convinced that words such as WHANGSBY or WARZLEMENT or WITWANTON have the gravitas I might imagine the next book should have. What about WHANGAM or WHEEPLE or WIDDERSHINS? Perhaps something with more depth – WINSOME, WHIMSICAL, WAYWARD, WRETCHEDNESS?


Perhaps my pursuit of the W series is something of a WHIGMALEERIE


Kind wordsmiths have offered several suggestions for other ‘W’ words and they have been gratefully received. I think some believe there’s some kind of prize if I use their word for the titles. There isn’t! Possibly an acknowledgement.

Welter should be released in the next few months. Number 4 early in 2024.

For your edification:

Whangsby (to beat) Warzlement (wheedling flattery)

Witwanton (irreverent wit) Whangam (an imaginary animal)

Wheeple (whistle feebly) Widdershins (counter clockwise)

Wunderkammer (cabinet of curiosities) Wunderkind (wonder child)

Wunschdenken (wishful thinking) Whigmaleerie (fanciful gimmick)

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