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a. The act or process of producing and recording words in a form that can be read and understood: At first, most students find writing difficult.
b. The occupation or style of someone who writes, especially for publication.
2. Written form: Put it in writing.
3. Handwriting; penmanship: writing that has many flourishes.
4. Something written, especially:
a. Meaningful letters or characters that constitute readable matter: erased the writing on the blackboard.
b. A written work, especially a literary composition: collected all the author's writings.
5. Writings(used with a sing. or pl. verb) Bible The third of the three divisions of the Hebrew Scriptures, composed of Psalms, Proverbs, Job, Song of Solomon, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Daniel, Ezra, Nehemiah, and Chronicles. See Table at Bible.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. (Letters of the Alphabet (Foreign)) a group of letters or symbols written or marked on a surface as a means of communicating ideas by making each symbol stand for an idea, concept, or thing, by using each symbol to represent a set of sounds grouped into syllables (syllabic writing), or by regarding each symbol as corresponding roughly or exactly to each of the sounds in the language (alphabetic writing). See also ideogram
2. (Printing, Lithography & Bookbinding) short for handwriting
3. (Literary & Literary Critical Terms) anything expressed in letters, esp a literary composition
4. (Literary & Literary Critical Terms) the work of a writer
5. (Literary & Literary Critical Terms) literary style, art, or practice
6. (Printing, Lithography & Bookbinding) written form: give it to me in writing.
7. (Printing, Lithography & Bookbinding) (modifier) related to or used in writing: writing ink.
8. writing on the wall a sign or signs of approaching disaster
[sense 8: allusion to Daniel 5:5]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈraɪ tɪŋ)

1. the act of a person or thing that writes.
2. matter written with a pen or the like: His writing is illegible.
3. written form: Put the agreement in writing.
4. a legal document, as a contract or deed.
5. an inscription.
6. literary or musical composition.
7. the style, form, quality, etc., of such composition.
8. the profession of a writer.
9. the Writings, Hagiographa.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. the use of a symbol to represent phonetically the initial sound (syllable or letter) of the name of an object, as A is the flrst sound of Greek alpha.
2. the use of the name of the object as the name of the symbol representing its initial sound, as A in Greek is called alpha “ox.” Also called acrophony. — acrologic, adj.
the act of writing something by hand. — autographer, n.autographic, adj.autographically, adv.
the art or science of analyzing handwriting, especially that of manuscripts with the purpose of establishing their authorship or authenticity. — bibliotist, n.bibliotic, adj.
an abbreviated writing; shorthand. — brachygraphic, adj.
1. bad handwriting. Cf. calligraphy.
2. the possession of poor spelling skills. See also orthography. — cacographer, n.cacographic, cacographical, adj.
1. the art of beautiful penmanship.
2. handwriting in general.
3. good handwriting skills. Cf. cacography.
4. a script of a high aesthetic value produced by brush, especially that of Chinese, Japanese, or Arabic origin. — calligrapher, calligraphist, n.calligraphic, calligraphical, adj.
1. the penmanship of a person, especially when used in an important document, as in an apostolic letter written and signed by the pope.
2. the art of beautiful penmanship; calligraphy. — chirograph, chirographer, n.chirographic, chirographical, adj.
1. the art of writing in inks containing gold or silver in suspension.
2. the gold writing produced in this way. — chrysographer, n.
1. the science or study of secret writing, especially code and cipher systems.
2. the procedures and methods of making and using secret languages, as codes or ciphers. — cryptographer, cryptographist, n.cryptographic, cryptographical, cryptographal, adj.
the representation of things or sounds by means of their pictures instead of by symbols or words, as in hieroglyphics or a rebus. — curiologic, curiological, adj.
1. a document or other piece of writing in a large, bold hand.
2. a formal document, as a proclamation, suitably written in a calligraphic hand and often illuminated. — engrosser, n.
Shorthand, a word that is represented by a single symbol or character.
the reading of character or personality from a person’s handwriting. Cf. graphology. — graphanalyst, n.
Linguistics. the study of systems of writing and their relationship to the systems of the languages they represent. Also called graphonomy. — graphemic, adj.
the art or craft of writing or delineating. — graphiologist, n.
the study of handwriting, especially as regarded as an expression of character. Cf. graphanalysis. — graphologist, n.graphologic, graphological, adj.
an obsession with writing.
Psychology. the study of handwriting as a symptom of mental or emotional disorder. — graphopathologist, n.graphopathological, adj.
a dislike for writing.
1. writing in excessive amounts, sometimes incoherently.
2. extreme wordiness in writing.
a form of divination involving the examination of a person’s handwriting.
the accidental omission in writing or copying of one or more adjacent and similar letters, syllables, words, or lines, as tagme for tagmeme.
the study of hieroglyphic writing, or a system employing a conventionalized pictographic script, esp. that used by the ancient Egyptians. — hieroglyphologist, n.
sacred writing or a sacred character or symbol. — hierogrammatist, n.hierogrammatic, hierogrammatical, adj.
Rare. sacred writing; hierograms and the art of writing them. — hierographer, n.hierographic, hierographical, adj.
the process of using a distinct character to represent each sound. — homographic, adj.
a form of writing regarded as midway between picture writing, as hieroglyphics, and phonetic writing in which the names of the symbols are not the names of the objects they depict but phonetic elements only. — iconomatic, adj.
a form of writing in which a written symbol represents an object rather than a word or speech sound. — ideographic, ideographical, adj.
Rare. the imitation of another person’s handwriting. — isographic, isographical, adj.
the avoidance of a certain letter or syllable in a text. — lipogram, n.
the act or process of representing with letters.
a sign or symbol used to represent a word, as $ for dollar. Also logograph.logographic, adj.
a method of reporting spoken language in longhand, esp. one using several reporters taking down a few words in succession. — logographer, n.logographic, adj.
abnormally large handwriting, often the result of a nervous disorder in the writer.
an apparatus used for miniature writing or drawing. — micrography, n.
the art or technique of writing with extremely small characters. — micrographic, adj.
Pathology. physical difficulty in writing. — mogigraphic, adj.
two or more letters, as initials, formed into a design to be placed on clothing, notepaper, etc., or as a crest. See also ornamentation. — monogrammatic, monogrammatical, adj.
excessive use of or fondness for, or incorrect use of the letter m and the sound it represents. Also mutacism.
Rare. a new or novel way of writing.
a writing frame designed for use by blind people.
a form of divination involving the examination of letters, possibly from a graphological standpoint. Also onomancy.
1. an alphabetical script originally used for inscriptions in the Irish language from the 5th to the 10th centuries.
2. any of the 20 characters of this script.
3. an inscription in this script. — oghamist, ogamist, n.
1. the practice of writing on both sides of the object used as a surface, as papyrus or stone.
2. the writing done in this fashion. — opisthography, n.
1. ancient forms of writing, as in inscriptions, documents, and manuscripts.
2. the study of ancient writings, including decipherment, translation, and determination of age and date. — paleographer, palaeographer, n.paleographic, palaeographic, adj.
a flourish or other embellishment made after a signature, either as idiosyncrasy or to protect against forgery.
1. the art or skill of handwriting or writing with a pen.
2. a particular person’s manner or characteristic style of handwriting.
a symbol or character, as in shorthand, that represents a word, syllable, or sound.
1. any system of phonetic shorthand, as that of Pitman.
2. phonetic spelling, writing, or shorthand. — phonographer, phonographist, n.phonographic, adj.
a character or symbol, as in shorthand, that represents a phrase. Cf. phraseograph.
a phrase that can be represented by a phraseogram. Cf. phraseogram.
the use of pictorial symbols to communicate; picture writing with symbols that may be either ideographic or phonetic in function. — pictograph, n.pictographic, adj.
the knowledge of runes and their interpretation; skill or expertise with runes.
the study of runes and runic writing. — runologist, n.runological, adj.
an instrument for writing when unable to see.
1. illegible handwriting.
2. the work of an inferior or untalented author.
a mania for writing
Rare. handwriting, especially a particular style of handwriting such as that of a particular person or period.
the art and practice of the scrivener or copyist. — scrivener, n.
the use of symbols other than letters in writing. — sematographic, adj.
1. a system of symbolic notation. Also semiography. — semeiographic, semeiographical, adj.
Rare. the art of writing and deciphering cuneiform characters. — sphenographer, sphenographist, n.sphenographic, adj.
1. the practice of chiseling commemorative inscriptions in pillars, tablets, and stelae.
2. any inscription so done. — stelographic, adj.
the art of writing in shorthand. — stenographer, stenographist, n.stenographic, stenographical, adj.
a phonographic shorthand in which alphabetic letters, produced by hand or a special machine, are used to represent words and phrases. — stenotypist, n.stenotypic, adj.
the art of drawing, writing, or engraving with a stylus or similar instrument. — stylographic, stylographical, adj.
1. a table of syllables, as might be used for teaching a language.
2. a system of characters or symbols representing syllables instead of individual sounds. Also syllabarium.
1. the use of characters in writing that represent syllables rather than individual sounds, as in the Cherokee syllabary.
2. a division of a word into syllables.
1. the ancient Greek and Roman shorthand systems.
2. cursive writing. — tachygrapher, tachygraphist, n.tachygraphic, tachygraphical, adj.
the transmission of writing or drawing such that the movements of the receiving pen copy those of the transmitting pen or pencil, yielding a facsimile reproduction at the receiving end. — telautograph, n.telautographic, adj.
a form of large, rounded script found in Latin and Greek manuscripts from the 3rd or 4th century until the 10th century. — uncial, adj.
-Ologies & -Isms. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.




  1. The act of writing itself is done in secret, like masturbation —Stephen King
  2. Alliteration is like ivy, some of it is poison —Delmore Schwartz
  3. As a baker bakes more bread than brown; or as a tumbler tumbles up and down; so does our author, rummaging his brain, by various methods try to entertain —Henry Fielding
  4. An author at work is like an oyster, clam-quiet and busy —Rumer Godden
  5. An author introduced to people who have read, or who say they have read his books, always feels like a man taken for the first time to be shown to his future wife’s relations —Jerome K. Jerome
  6. An author is like a baker; it is for him to make the sweets, and others to buy and enjoy them —Leigh Hunt
  7. Authors are like cattle going to a fair: those of the same field can never move on without butting one another —Walter Savage Landor
  8. Authors, like coins, grow dear as they grow old; it is the rust we value, not the gold —Alexander Pope
  9. An author who speaks of his own books is almost as bad as a mother who talks about her own children —Benjamin Disraeli
  10. Being an author is like treading water in the middle of the ocean; you can never stop, you can never stop treading water —Delmore Schwartz
  11. Being a writer in a library is rather like being a eunuch in a harem —John Braine, New York Times, Oct. 7, 1961
  12. A biographer is like a contractor who builds roads: it’s terribly messy, mud everywhere, and when you get done, people travel over the road at a fast clip —Arthur Wilson
  13. Churn out books as though his days were numbered —Michiko Kakutani, New York Times, February 14, 1987

    In reviewing Anthony Burgess’ autobiography, Little Wilson and Big God, Kakutani uses this simile to introduce her recounting the story of how Burgess began writing when he thought that his days were in fact numbered.

  14. Clear writers, like fountains, do not seem so deep as they are —Walter Savage Landor

    The simile is followed by this about the less-than-clear: “The turbid look the most profound.”

  15. A collection of essays is a collection of variations —Elizabeth Hardwick
  16. The essayist is kind of poet in prose —Alexander Smith
  17. Every author, however modest, keeps a most outrageous vanity chained like a madman in the padded cell of his breast —Logan Pearsall Smith
  18. For the blocked or hesitant, the advent of the computer is like the advent of spring: the frozen river surges, the hard earth flowers —Edward Mendelson reporting on computers for writers, Yale Review, 1985
  19. Getting a book published without a literary agent is like swimming dangerous waters without a shark repellent —Rae Lawrence, New York Times Magazine, July 5, 1987

    Lawrence’s simile serves to introduce her experience in finding and choosing a literary agent for her first novel.

  20. Good writing is a kind of skating which carries off the performer where he would not go —Ralph Waldo Emerson
  21. Grammar is an art. Style is a gift. You are born with your style, just as you are born with your voice —Anatole France
  22. The great writer finds style as the mystic finds God, in his own soul —Havelock Ellis
  23. Hiring someone to write your autobiography is like hiring someone to take a bath for you —Mae West, quoted in Bookviews, February 11, 1977
  24. I can get a kind of tension when I’m writing a short story [as compared to a novel], like I’m pulling on a rope and know where the rope is attached —Alice Munro, quoted New York Times Book Review, September 14, 1986
  25. I get a thing I call sentence-fever that must be like buck-fever; it’s a sort of intense literary self-consciousness that comes when I try to force myself —F. Scott Fitzgerald
  26. (I enjoy the hell out of writing because) it’s [writing] like an Easter egg hunt. Here’s 50 pages and you say, “Oh, Christ, where is it? Then on the 51st page, it’ll work” —John D. MacDonald
  27. Like thrifty French cooks, waste nothing —Leslie Garis, New York Times Magazine, February 8, 1987

    Garis used the simile to describe Joan Didion and John Gregory Dunne’s extensive note taking.

  28. A long preface to a short treatise is like a high hat crowning a low brow —Zevi Hirsh Somerhausen

    Paraphrased for more modern English usage from “Like a high hat crowning a low brow is a long preface to a short treatise.”

  29. Long sentences in a short composition are like large rooms in little houses —William Shenstone
  30. Method in writing is like ceremony in living too often used to supply the want of better things —Thomas Killigrew
  31. Minor characters [in scripts] are rather like knights in chess: limited in movement, but handy in their capacity for quick turns, for fixing situations —John Fowles
  32. A narrative is like a room on whose walls a number of false doors have been painted; while within the narrative, we have many apparent choices of exit, but when the author leads us to one particular door, we know it is the right one because the door opens —John Updike
  33. Nobody can write a real drama who hasn’t smelled the grease paint; it’s like somebody composing who’s never played an instrument —Mary McCarthy
  34. Novels, like human beings, usually have their beginnings in the dark —Rita Mae Brown
  35. People who write books take as much punishment as prizefighters —Norman Mailer
  36. A pin has as much head as some authors and a great deal more point —George D. Prentice
  37. The profession of book-writing makes horse racing seem like a solid, stable business —John Steinbeck
  38. The profession of writing is wrong, like smoking cigarettes, bad for your health, a diminisher of life expectancy —William Saroyan
  39. Prose as smooth and burnished as well-oiled furniture —A. R. Gurney Jr., New York Times Book Review, 1985

    The author of this smooth prose is Louis Auchincloss.

  40. Prose consists of … phrases tacked together like the sections of a prefabricated hen-house —George Orwell
  41. Prose is like music, every word must be placed for sound, color and nuance —James G. Huneker
  42. A sentence should read as if its author, had he held a plough instead of a pen, could have drawn a furrow deep and straight to the end —Henry David Thoreau
  43. Sometimes writing a recipe takes me a whole day … to communicate it correctly. It’s like writing a little short story —Julia Childs
  44. To inclose him (a fictional character) as irradiantly as amber does the fly and yet the while to preserve every detail of his being has, of all tasks, ever been the dearest to me —Stefan Zweig

    In his foreword to a collection of stories and novelettes, Zweig used this simile to explain that he considers his short fiction as much an accomplishment as his more “spacious” works.

  45. Typing your own manuscript for submission is a lot like dressing to see that old lover who left you five years ago —Ira Wood

    In his novel, The Kitchen Man, Wood expands the simile as follows: “Ready to walk out the door you stop one last time at the mirror, just to be sure they’re going to regret what they walked out on. Well, maybe the belt is wrong, you think, throwing it on the bed, pulling out another. No, these old shoes won’t do, too dowdy. After an hour, you’re stripped to your socks and in tears, absolutely sure now that you are the perfect mess they said you were. And so your manuscript will be if you don’t fight every urge to better every sentence.”

  46. A well-written life is almost as rare as a well-spent one —Thomas Carlyle
  47. Words flowed from his pen like sparkling spring water —Yoko Ono, about husband John Lennon’s writing
  48. A writer may take to long words, as young men to beards, to impress —F. L. Lucas
  49. Writers, like teeth, are divided into incisors and grinders —Walter Bagehot
  50. The writer’s work is a little like handwriting. It comes out to be you no matter what you do —John Updike, New York Times, January 18, 1987
  51. The writer who draws his material from a book is like one who borrows money only to lend it —Kahlil Gibran
  52. Writes like a comrade, the kind of friend with whom it is a pleasure to dispute —Jacques Barzun about H. W. Fowler, the author of Modern English Usage, New York Times Book Review, December 12, 1986

    Reviewer John Gross in his turn applied the simile to Barzun’s book, A Word Or Two Before You Go.

  53. Writing a first draft is like groping one’s way into a pitch dark room, or overhearing a faint conversation, or telling a joke whose punchline you’ve forgotten —Ted Solotaroff
  54. Writing for a newspaper is like running a revolutionary war; you go into battle not when you are ready but when action offers itself —Norman Mailer
  55. Writing for him was as hard work as catching fleas —Ivan Turgenev
  56. Writing is akin to fortunetelling … you look into someone’s life, read where they have been and predict what will happen to them —Marcia Norman, quoted New York Times Book Review, May 24, 1987
  57. Writing is like building a house —Ellen Gilchrist
  58. Writing is like pulling the trigger of a gun: if you are not loaded, nothing happens —Henry Seidel
  59. Writing is like religion. Every man who feels the call must work out his own salvation —George Horace Lorimer
  60. Writing is like serving a jail sentence, you’re not free until you’ve done time on the rock-heap —Paul Theroux
  61. Writing is like writing a check … it’s easy to write a check if you have enough money in the bank, and writing comes more easily if you have something to say —Sholem Asch
  62. Writing … it is rather like building a house, every separate word is another brick laid into place, cemented to its fellows, and gradually you begin to see the wall beginning to rise, and you know that the rooms inside will take their shape as you intended —Vita Sackville-West
  63. Writing without publishing gets to be like loving someone from afar, delicious for fantasies but thin gruel for a living —Ted Solotaroff
  64. Wrote not without puzzlements and travail, nevertheless as naturally as birds —Cynthia Ozick
  65. You become a good writer just as you become a good joiner: by planing down your sentences —Anatole France
  66. Your article should be like a lady’s skirt: long enough to cover the essentials, and short enough to be interesting —editorial advice to free lancers, PhotoGraphic, January 1987
Similes Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1988 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.writing - the act of creating written workswriting - the act of creating written works; "writing was a form of therapy for him"; "it was a matter of disputed authorship"
verbal creation - creating something by the use of speech and language
adoxography - fine writing in praise of trivial or base subjects; "Elizabethan schoolboys were taught adoxography, the art of eruditely praising worthless things"; "adoxography is particularly useful to lawyers"
drafting - writing a first version to be filled out and polished later
dramatisation, dramatization - conversion into dramatic form; "the play was a dramatization of a short story"
fabrication, fictionalisation, fictionalization - writing in a fictional form
historiography - the writing of history
metrification - writing a metrical composition (or the metrical structure of a composition)
novelisation, novelization - converting something into the form of a novel
redaction - the act of putting something in writing
lexicography - the act of writing dictionaries
versification - the art or practice of writing verse
indite, pen, write, compose - produce a literary work; "She composed a poem"; "He wrote four novels"
write about, write of, write on - write about a particular topic; "Snow wrote about China"
profile - write about; "The author of this article profiles a famous painter"
paragraph - write paragraphs; work as a paragrapher
dash off, fling off, scratch off, toss off, knock off - write quickly; "She dashed off a note to her husband saying she would not be home for supper"; "He scratched off a thank-you note to the hostess"
rewrite - rewrite so as to make fit to suit a new or different purpose; "re-write a play for use in schools"
write copy - write for commercial publications; "She writes copy for Harper's Bazaar"
dramatise, dramatize, adopt - put into dramatic form; "adopt a book for a screenplay"
draft, outline - draw up an outline or sketch for something; "draft a speech"
author - be the author of; "She authored this play"
co-author - be a co-author on (a book, a paper)
ghostwrite, ghost - write for someone else; "How many books have you ghostwritten so far?"
annotate, footnote - add explanatory notes to or supply with critical comments; "The scholar annotated the early edition of a famous novel"
reference, cite - refer to; "he referenced his colleagues' work"
write out, write up - put into writing; write in complete form; "write out a contract"
script - write a script for; "The playwright scripted the movie"
2.writing - the work of a writer; anything expressed in letters of the alphabet (especially when considered from the point of view of style and effect); "the writing in her novels is excellent"; "that editorial was a fine piece of writing"
bowdlerisation, bowdlerization - written material that has been bowdlerized
title - (usually plural) written material introduced into a movie or TV show to give credits or represent dialogue or explain an action; "the titles go by faster than I can read"
black and white, written communication, written language - communication by means of written symbols (either printed or handwritten)
cryptogram, secret writing, cryptograph - a piece of writing in code or cipher
rewrite, revision, rescript - something that has been written again; "the rewrite was much better"
literary composition, literary work - imaginative or creative writing
literature - creative writing of recognized artistic value
literature - published writings in a particular style on a particular subject; "the technical literature"; "one aspect of Waterloo has not yet been treated in the literature"
matter - written works (especially in books or magazines); "he always took some reading matter with him on the plane"
literary criticism, criticism - a written evaluation of a work of literature
section, subdivision - a self-contained part of a larger composition (written or musical); "he always turns first to the business section"; "the history of this work is discussed in the next section"
epilog, epilogue - a short passage added at the end of a literary work; "the epilogue told what eventually happened to the main characters"
paragraph - one of several distinct subdivisions of a text intended to separate ideas; the beginning is usually marked by a new indented line
diary, journal - a daily written record of (usually personal) experiences and observations
inscription, lettering - letters inscribed (especially words engraved or carved) on something
manuscript, ms - the form of a literary work submitted for publication
autograph - something written by one's own hand
treatise - a formal exposition
adaptation, version - a written work (as a novel) that has been recast in a new form; "the play is an adaptation of a short novel"
essay - an analytic or interpretive literary composition
editing, redaction - putting something (as a literary work or a legislative bill) into acceptable form
religious text, religious writing, sacred text, sacred writing - writing that is venerated for the worship of a deity
screed - a long piece of writing
document, papers, written document - writing that provides information (especially information of an official nature)
dramatic composition, dramatic work - a play for performance on the stage or television or in a movie etc.
dithyramb - a wildly enthusiastic speech or piece of writing
plagiarism - a piece of writing that has been copied from someone else and is presented as being your own work
transcript - something that has been transcribed; a written record (usually typewritten) of dictated or recorded speech; "he read a transcript of the interrogation"; "you can obtain a transcript of this radio program by sending a self-addressed envelope to the station"
3.writing - (usually plural) the collected work of an author; "the idea occurs with increasing frequency in Hemingway's writings"
body of work, oeuvre, work - the total output of a writer or artist (or a substantial part of it); "he studied the entire Wagnerian oeuvre"; "Picasso's work can be divided into periods"
plural, plural form - the form of a word that is used to denote more than one
black and white, written communication, written language - communication by means of written symbols (either printed or handwritten)
patristics, patrology - the writings of the early Church Fathers
4.writing - letters or symbols that are written or imprinted on a surface to represent the sounds or words of a languagewriting - letters or symbols that are written or imprinted on a surface to represent the sounds or words of a language; "he turned the paper over so the writing wouldn't show"; "the doctor's writing was illegible"
black and white, written communication, written language - communication by means of written symbols (either printed or handwritten)
orthography, writing system - a method of representing the sounds of a language by written or printed symbols
coding system - a system of signals used to represent letters or numbers in transmitting messages
capitalisation, capitalization - writing in capital letters
typewriting, typing - writing done with a typewriter
printing - text handwritten in the style of printed matter
handwriting, script, hand - something written by hand; "she recognized his handwriting"; "his hand was illegible"
hieroglyph, hieroglyphic - writing that resembles hieroglyphics (usually by being illegible)
skywriting - writing formed in the sky by smoke released from an airplane
printing process, printing - reproduction by applying ink to paper as for publication
notation, notational system - a technical system of symbols used to represent special things
5.writing - the activity of putting something in written formwriting - the activity of putting something in written form; "she did the thinking while he did the writing"
activity - any specific behavior; "they avoided all recreational activity"
coding, steganography, cryptography, secret writing - act of writing in code or cipher
handwriting - the activity of writing by hand; "handwriting can be slow and painful for one with arthritis"
inscription - the activity of inscribing (especially carving or engraving) letters or words
notation - the activity of representing something by a special system of marks or characters
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


1. script, hand, print, printing, fist (informal), scribble, handwriting, scrawl, calligraphy, longhand, penmanship, chirography It's a little difficult to read your writing.
2. documents, works, books, letters, titles, opuses, publications, literature, compositions, belles-lettres Althusser's writings are focused mainly on France.
writing on the wall omen, sign, warning, signal, portent, forewarning, ill omen We should have seen the writing on the wall and guessed what was coming.
Related words
like graphomania, scribomania
fear graphophobia
"Writing, at its best, is a lonely life" [Ernest Hemingway speech, accepting the Nobel Prize for Literature]
"I think writing does come out of a deep well of loneliness and a desire to fill some kind of gap" [Jay McInerney]
"Would you not like to try all sorts of lives - one is so very small - but that is the satisfaction of writing - one can impersonate so many people" [Katherine Mansfield letter]
Collins Thesaurus of the English Language – Complete and Unabridged 2nd Edition. 2002 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995, 2002
pisavapisemski papirpismenorokopiszapis
bài viết


A. N
1. (= handwriting) → letra f
I can't read your writingno entiendo tu letra
2. (= system) → escritura f
before the invention of writingantes de la invención de la escritura
3. (= letters, words) there was some writing on the pagehabía algo escrito en la página
I could see the writing but couldn't read itpodía ver que había algo escrito pero no podía leerlo
in writingpor escrito
I'd like to have that in writingme gustaría tenerlo por escrito
to put sth in writingponer algo por escrito
to see the writing on the wallvérsela venir
he had seen the writing on the wallvio lo que se le venía encima
the writing is on the wall for the president/the companyel presidente/la compañia tiene los días contados
4. (= written work) the essay contains some imaginative writingel ensayo tiene secciones redactadas con imaginación
Aubrey's biographical writingslas obras biográficas de Aubrey
it's a brilliant piece of writingestá maravillosamente escrito
5. (= activity) → escritura f
writing is his hobbysu hobby es la escritura, su hobby es escribir
he earns quite a lot from writinggana bastante escribiendo
a course in novel writingun curso sobre redacción de novelas
B. CPD writing case Nestuche m para material de correspondencia
writing desk Nescritorio m
writing materials NPLartículos mpl de escritorio
writing pad Nbloc m
writing paper Npapel m de escribir
writing table Nescritorio m
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005


(= act of putting words on paper) → écriture f
He has problems reading and writing → Il a des problèmes avec la lecture et l'écriture.
(= written or printed words) → mots f écrits
There's some writing on the other side → Il y a quelque chose d'écrit au verso.
Joe tried to read the writing on the opposite page → Joe tenta de lire les mots écrits en regard.
in writing → par écrit
to put sth in writing → mettre qch par écrit
the writing is on the wall (fig)les signes sont là
[novelist, poet] → écriture f
The book contains some brilliant writing → Le livre recèle des passages brillamment écrits.
(= as job) → écriture f
(= handwriting) → écriture f
I can't read your writing → Je n'arrive pas à lire ton écriture.
in my own writing → écrit(e) de ma main writings
npl [author] → écrits mplwriting case nnécessaire m de correspondancewriting desk nsecrétaire mwriting pad nbloc m de papier à lettreswriting paper npapier m à lettres
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


nSchrift f; (= act, profession)Schreiben nt; (= inscription)Inschrift f; at the time of writingals dies geschrieben wurde; (in present) → während ich dies schreibe; in writingschriftlich; permission in writingschriftliche Genehmigung; to commit something to writingetw schriftlich festhalten; this is a fantastic piece of writingdas ist fantastisch geschrieben; his writingsseine Werke or Schriften; in somebody’s own writing (= not typed)handgeschrieben; (= not written by sb else)in jds eigener (Hand)schrift (dat); he earns a bit from his writinger verdient sich ein bisschen (Geld) mit Schreiben; the writing is on the wall for themihre Stunde hat geschlagen; he had seen the writing on the waller hat die Zeichen erkannt


in cpdsSchreib-;
writing book
nSchreibheft nt
writing case
nSchreibmappe f
writing desk
nSchreibtisch m, → Schreibpult nt
writing materials
plSchreibmaterial nt, → Schreibmaterialien pl
writing pad
nSchreib- or Notizblock m
writing paper
nSchreibpapier nt
writing stand
nStehpult nt
writing table
nSchreibtisch m
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007


[ˈraɪtɪŋ] n (art) → scrivere m; (sth written) → scritto; (handwriting) → scrittura writings npl (author's works) → opera fsg
to put sth in writing → mettere qc per iscritto
in my own writing → scritto di mio pugno
Aubrey's biographical writings → gli scritti biografici di Aubrey
writing is my profession → faccio lo scrittore di professione
writing is just a hobby with me → scrivere è solo un hobby per me
the writing on the wall (fig) → il presagio della rovina
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995


(rait) past tense wrote (rout) : past participle written (ˈritn) verb
1. to draw (letters or other forms of script) on a surface, especially with a pen or pencil on paper. They wrote their names on a sheet of paper; The child has learned to read and write; Please write in ink.
2. to compose the text of (a book, poem etc). She wrote a book on prehistoric monsters.
3. to compose a letter (and send it). He has written a letter to me about this matter; I'll write you a long letter about my holiday; I wrote to you last week.
ˈwriter noun
a person who writes, especially for a living. Dickens was a famous English writer; the writer of this letter.
ˈwriting noun
letters or other forms of script giving the written form of (a) language. the Chinese form of writing; I can't read your writing.
ˈwritings noun plural
the collected books, poems, correspondence etc of a particular (usually famous) person. the writings of Plato.
written (ˈritn) adjective
in writing. a written message.
ˈwriting-paper noun
paper for writing letters etc on. writing-paper and envelopes.
write down
to record in writing. She wrote down every word he said.
write out
to copy or record in writing. Write this exercise out in your neatest handwriting.
Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary © 2006-2013 K Dictionaries Ltd.


كِتَابَة písmo skrift Schrift γραφή escrito, escritura kirjoitus écriture tekst scrittura 書いたもの 저작 schrijven skriving pisanie escrita писание skrift งานเขียน yazı bài viết 作品
Multilingual Translator © HarperCollins Publishers 2009


n. escritura, acto de escribir.
English-Spanish Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012
References in classic literature ?
Of course, he cautioned himself, it would be slow succeeding at first, and for a time he would be content to earn enough money by his writing to enable him to go on studying.
Besides, the very article he was writing would bring her nearer to him.
The words flowed from his pen, though he broke off from the writing frequently to look up definitions in the dictionary or to refer to the rhetoric.
I POINTED to the writing in the sketch book, and looked at my mother.
Putting the words and the writing together, the conclusion was too plain to be mistaken.
And now the ghostly apparition of her had returned as to a tried and trusted friend; had commanded me to remember her and to go to her; and had provided against all possibility of my memory playing me false, by writing the words which invited me to meet her "when the full moon shone on Saint Anthony's Well."
Having burned my ship, I plunged into writing. I am afraid I always was an extremist.
The trouble with the beginner at the writing game is the long, dry spells, when there is never an editor's cheque and everything pawnable is pawned.
Again, what is my object precisely in writing? If it is not for the benefit of the public why should I not simply recall these incidents in my own mind without putting them on paper?
Besides, I shall perhaps obtain actual relief from writing. Today, for instance, I am particularly oppressed by one memory of a distant past.
In this way I got a good many lessons in writing, which it is quite possible I should never have gotten in any other way.
And the world is sad enough without our writing books to make it sadder.