- the act of a person or thing that writes.
- written form: to commit one's thoughts to writing.
- that which is written; characters or matter written with a pen or the like: His writing is illegible.
- such characters or matter with respect to style, kind, quality, etc.
- an inscription.
- a letter.
- any written or printed paper, as a document or deed.
- literary or musical style, form, quality, technique, etc.: Her writing is stilted.
- a literary composition or production.
- the profession of a writer: He turned to writing at an early age.
- the Writings, Hagiographa.
- writing on the wall. handwriting(def 4).
Origin of writing
- to trace or form (characters, letters, words, etc.) on the surface of some material, as with a pen, pencil, or other instrument or means; inscribe: Write your name on the board.
- to express or communicate in writing; give a written account of.
- to fill in the blank spaces of (a printed form) with writing: to write a check.
- to execute or produce by setting down words, figures, etc.: to write two copies of a letter.
- to compose and produce in words or characters duly set down: to write a letter to a friend.
- to produce as author or composer: to write a sonnet; to write a symphony.
- to trace significant characters on, or mark or cover with writing.
- to cause to be apparent or unmistakable: Honesty is written on his face.
- Computers. to transfer (information, data, programs, etc.) from storage to secondary storage or an output medium.
- Stock Exchange. to sell (options).
- to underwrite.
- to trace or form characters, words, etc., with a pen, pencil, or other instrument or means, or as a pen or the like does: He writes with a pen.
- to write as a profession or occupation: She writes for the Daily Inquirer.
- to express ideas in writing.
- to write a letter or letters, or communicate by letter: Write if you get work.
- to compose or work as a writer or author.
- Computers. to write into a secondary storage device or output medium.
- write down,
- to set down in writing; record; note.
- to direct one's writing to a less intelligent reader or audience: He writes down to the public.
- write in,
- to vote for (a candidate not listed on the ballot) by writing his or her name on the ballot.
- to include in or add to a text by writing: Do not write in corrections on the galley.
- to request something by mail: If interested, please write in for details.
- write off,
- to cancel an entry in an account, as an unpaid and uncollectable debt.
- to regard as worthless, lost, obsolete, etc.; decide to forget: to write off their bad experience.
- to amortize: The new equipment was written off in three years.
- write out,
- to put into writing.
- to write in full form; state completely.
- to exhaust the capacity or resources of by excessive writing: He's just another author who has written himself out.
- write up,
- to put into writing, especially in full detail: Write up a report.
- to present to public notice in a written description or account.
- Accounting.to make an excessive valuation of (an asset).
Origin of write
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for writing
True, this may not be what James Madison had in mind when he was writing the Bill of Rights.Why We Stand With Charlie Hebdo—And You Should Too
January 8, 2015
Both Ney and Abramoff have reentered the public spotlight following their sentences, writing books about their experiences.Abramoff’s Advice for Virginia’s New Jailhouse Guv
Tim Mak, Jackie Kucinich
January 7, 2015
I started just writing these songs, at first it felt like a project or something.Deer Tick's John McCauley on Ten Years in Rock and Roll
January 2, 2015
I wish I could be writing to you under better circumstances, but unfortunately those avenues have closed up.Dear Leelah, We Will Fight On For You: A Letter to a Dead Trans Teen
January 1, 2015
Before his writing days, London used the Oakland establishment to conduct his studies.The Bars That Made America Great
December 28, 2014
"I told your father that this morning," and he resumed his writing.
"This is my address," said the merchant, writing it in pencil, and handing it to Robert.
They possessed a system of writing of their own which they thought vastly superior.
All the systems of writing of the ancient people of Asia had one thing in common.
He walked home with Hester Paine last evening from the writing school.
- 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
- short for handwriting
- anything expressed in letters, esp a literary composition
- the work of a writer
- literary style, art, or practice
- written formgive it to me in writing
- (modifier) related to or used in writingwriting ink
- writing on the wall a sign or signs of approaching disaster
- to draw or mark (symbols, words, etc) on a surface, usually paper, with a pen, pencil, or other instrument
- to describe or record (ideas, experiences, etc) in writing
- to compose (a letter) to or correspond regularly with (a person, organization, etc)
- (tr; may take a clause as object) to say or communicate by letterhe wrote that he was on his way
- (tr) informal, mainly US and Canadian to send a letter to (a person, etc)
- to write (words) in cursive as opposed to printed style
- (tr) to be sufficiently familiar with (a specified style, language, etc) to use it in writing
- to be the author or composer of (books, music, etc)
- (tr) to fill in the details for (a document, form, etc)
- (tr) to draw up or draft
- (tr) to produce by writinghe wrote ten pages
- (tr) to show clearlyenvy was written all over his face
- (tr) to spell, inscribe, or entitle
- (tr) to ordain or prophesyit is written
- (tr) to sit (an examination)
- (intr) to produce writing as specified
- computing to record (data) in a location in a storage deviceCompare read 1 (def. 16)
- (tr) Compare underwrite (def. 3a)
Word Origin and History for writing
"system of human intercommunication by means of conventional visible marks," c.1300, "written characters; words, sentences," verbal noun from write (v.). From late 14c. as "action of composing in characters; craft of writing; one's own handwriting."
Old English writan "to score, outline, draw the figure of," later "to set down in writing" (class I strong verb; past tense wrat, past participle writen), from Proto-Germanic *writanan "tear, scratch" (cf. Old Frisian writa "to write," Old Saxon writan "to tear, scratch, write," Old Norse rita "write, scratch, outline," Old High German rizan "to write, scratch, tear," German reißen "to tear, pull, tug, sketch, draw, design"), outside connections doubtful. Words for "write" in most I.E languages originally mean "carve, scratch, cut" (cf. Latin scribere, Greek grapho, Sanskrit rikh-); a few originally meant "paint" (cf. Gothic meljan, Old Church Slavonic pisati, and most of the modern Slavic cognates).
For men use to write an evill turne in marble stone, but a good turne in the dust. [More, 1513]
To write (something) off (1680s) originally was from accounting; figurative sense is recorded from 1889. Write-in "unlisted candidate" is recorded from 1932.