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Background

Okay, so I've decided now is my personal time to shine! I have thought of a great new word, and want to add it to the dictionary. Theoretically, if enough people read my book and see this word in it, and people use it, then a lexicologist might consider making it a real word. Here's the word I've decided to make:

  • Elluient

Willing to be obedient for the sake of one's own gain (a final outcome, a reward, etc.).

Question

In my book, how would I use this word? I think that is quite self-explanatory - I can just use it in dialogue to describe one character as elluient. However...

How can I include the definition of my brand new word? Would I include it in the narrative? How would I do this?

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    If you're struggling to find a way to use it in context, then the word isn't ready to be coined yet. Sniglets are born when you have a concept which is desperately crying out for a word to describe it. – Lauren-Clear-Monica-Ipsum Nov 20 '16 at 13:41
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    Have you seen sycophancy? :) en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sycophancy – raddevus Nov 20 '16 at 16:47
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    A writer does not shine by making up words, but by using existing words well. – user16226 Nov 20 '16 at 18:23
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    That's so fetch. – user16226 Nov 20 '16 at 19:11
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    If i came across elluient in text, I'd assume you mistyped ebullient. (which is also what spellcheck wants to correct it to.) – Spagirl Nov 21 '16 at 12:31
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  1. You can just use it. Children learn most words by their usage, not explanation.

  2. Have one character ask what the other meant with that word ("What's elluient?") and that character explain it ("Elluient is if you are obedient for your own gain.")

  3. Have the narrator explain it. How you do that is up to your creativity.

  4. Words for that meaning already exist: subservient, submissive, obsequious, servile, etc.

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  • Thanks for your answer. Could you suggest some ways I could make the narrator explain it? I attempted to write a passage where the narrator defines it, but it appears slightly imperfect – Featherball Nov 20 '16 at 19:06
  • @DanielCann There are as many ways to do that as there are atoms in the universe. You need to find one that makes sense in the context of your story. If you can't find a way that seems to work for you, then maybe that is because you are trying to force an idea into your story that does not belong there. But to give an example: ... , Angela demanded. John was stunned, but he was willing to be obedient for the sake of their marriage. In fact, John was so single-minded in his obedience to his wife that I need to coin a new word to descibe it. Elluient. John was elluient without fail. – user5645 Nov 20 '16 at 21:17

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