Thursday, January 27, 2011

Update. No New Content Today... Yet.

I received a Kindle for Christmas from my son and his wife. (Actually, I am pretty sure that it was mostly from my daughter-in-law. She's sweet like that.) I am excited about the prospect of getting the grammar of TN into a Kindle-friendly format so that I can have an easily portable reference.

I need to update the grammar, and then I might create a "cheat sheet" version for the Kindle.

This afternoon, I plan on working out a simple Teliya Nevashi phrase book in order to have some useful conversational items together in one place.

I've been having a strong urge to start a new conlang, one that has the explicit purpose of being a personal auxiliary language (i.e. a conlang designed for everyday use in the real world by me... and anyone else interested). All my languages have this purpose, to some extent, but this is what I've been thinking about specifically for a new conlang now.

I'll try to resist, planning to redirect that energy toward TN, but I am not making any promises.

Monday, January 3, 2011

The Fourth Annual State Of The Language

Happy New Year! Welcome to 2011!

Let's get right into this, shall we?

This year was another slow one for TN. I've actually spent a lot of time thinking about it, but not very much time actually writing those thoughts down. I feel like my current documentation of the grammar is really out-of-date and in need of revision, but still usable, if not particularly user friendly. The vocabulary continues to grow. It is up to almost 450 words, although this total number also counts alternate forms of the same word and words derived from other words. But, hey, I never turn down a good number!

I have come to the conclusion that I need to approach the language differently. Neglecting it really isn't doing much to improve it.

This is going to be the year of translations and composition for TN-- to work out the bugs in the grammar, expand the lexicon, and get myself a lot more comfortable with using it. I had wanted to post some audio files in 2010, but that idea fell through the cracks. This year, I am going to make some recordings, and hopefully have some other people make recordings as well. I predict some fairly major revisions coming to the grammar, and possibly to the phonology as well, as the language gets used more on paper and aloud.

I realize that this is pretty much exactly what I said last year, but it didn't pan out in reality, and it all still needs to happen if the language is going to get up off the paper and get some life into it, if you know what I mean.

On a completly trivial note, this blog (which is also the "official site" for the language) is getting a new look. I am tired of the old one, and the light green on dark green has been getting a little hard on my eyes.

And that's pretty much all I have to say about where TN is at and where it is going. Now it is time for me to go take a nice hot bath as a reward for getting in here for the fourth year in a row to post a "State of the Language". And on time, too!

Nashvi: A Vocabulary Installment

I have had this stuck among my draft posts for a while, so now I am winding it up and posting it. I have spent an inordinate amount of time thinking about the Nevashi words for flatware (nashvi), mainly because I think of the words I want to use when I am walking to the store or in the shower or washing dishes, and then I forget them before I get a chance to write them down, so I have to invent them all over again later.

keb, to cut, slice
kebvi or kevvi, knife, blade
kebviozh or kevviozh, dagger, sword, machete (Anything in the large-to-very-large blade category)
vankebvi or vankevvi, scissors

The two forms shown are a matter of indecision on my part. It's my gut feeling that the 'bv' in this combination would eventually become 'vv', but I haven't decided if it is really going to do that at all, or if it would be spelled kebvi and pronounced kevvi, or be both spelled and pronounced kevvi. I haven't decided if this is some sort of general rule that might apply to other cases (e.g. would a hypothetical word kekxi become kexxi also?), if it is specific to that affix, or if it is sort of a weird thing about words for cutting-related tools. I haven't even formulated what the rule might be. That's something bubbling away on the back burner.

mek, to skewer or impale
meknash, fork
mekvi, skewer, spear

tum, to shovel or spoon (lift and move or measure with a shovel or spoon)
tumvi, shovel
tumviet, spoon

erhush, stir, mix together

luca, plate, disc
svado, bowl, dish
kalo, cooking pot, pan
iozina (or, alternately/more properly, iotzina), table (or board or plank; literally, "flat wood")

When I went to add these to the lexicon file, I found that I already had a word for "dish, bowl" (svado), which left kalo an orphan, so now it means a pan or pot for cooking. I was going to use it for table, but it sounded more bowl-shaped to me, so I decided to go the board=table route for table. I had to make a word for "wood" and then "flatwood" (because that sounded better than "cutwood" when I looked at both) and (SHAZAM!) we have a word for table.