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Getting into the intro game

From:Stephen DeGrace <stevedegrace@...>
Date:Tuesday, May 14, 2002, 8:06
Well, since Walter went I suppose I will too :).

I'm 27, masters student in chemistry at Memorial
University of Newfoundland in St. John's,
Newfoundland, Canada, currently living in
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. These are both
fairly rural-ish islands off Canada's east coast. I'm
a native Anglophone although I have had a lot of
exposure to French. Despite the name I am about 100%
ethnically an English/Scottish/Irish mix (British
Isles mongrel :) ), although I say I'm half ethnic
Newfoundlander :P.

I've had the conlanging bug since I was a kid, I
think, and knew about this list for a fair while but
only recently started to realy seriously try reading
it. Probably on account of too much workload to handle
the list traffic, plus interests wandering elsewhere.
Since I subscribed to the digest, tho, I've been
really getting a lot out of it. I find engaging in
conlanging-type things really teaches you a lot about
language (and your assumptions!), and there is
something even more to be gained to watch people talk
about doing it :). I've gotten to see some really neat

Anyway, I've always had weird interests. Mostly I've
been interested in scripts and orthographies, although
for some bizarre reason I was fascinated for a long
time with non-base-10 counting :P. Always had an
interest for this stuff but not so much of a talent I
suppose. My interests are too fickle for me to get
really good at anything.

My most complete conlang was one I did when I was a
teenager - I think it was caled "Sprexan". It works
from the idea of there being two kinds of dictionary
words - "rutansz" and "relatwordansz" (sz transcribed
the plural ending which was a made-up letter that
varied its pronounication), borrowed heavily from bits
and pieces of languages I knew some of, quite
shamelessly, really, on the principle that all that
mattered was to have some vocab, showed a complete
inattention to prosody and phonotactics, and had a
verb system that lacked any concept of "aspect" :P.
Everything depended on derivational suffixes that
marked the part of speech - verbs marked by their
conjugational ending, all nouns ending in -an, etc.
Now that I think of it, rather reminiscent of
Esperanto, which rather indicates I didn't know what I
was doing ::ducks:: ;). Later versions of the language
had a few derivational affixes that derived nouns from
roots, creating several de facto grammatical genders,
I suppose. Structurally it all rather unimaginatively
went with my ideas of what was "natural" I got form my
two-language sample of English and French :P. Sprexan
had no purpose, other than I suppose as a personal
secret langauge and as something I found deeply
satisfying to do. It didn't even have a fictional

I did another one a couple years ago that was really
weird, I just chucked out the whole rulebook and
invented all my own terminology to see what sort of
funky shit I could come up with. A lablang that
tragically died on the operating table - I don't even
remember if it had a name :).

My major bit of conlanging hobbyism I have permitted
myself is NGL/Tokcir. That's been fun. I've recently
gotten back into that after a long hiatus - I'm right
now engaged in a major project of dusting off a bunch
of the old "modules"/compositions, revising them,
rendering them as HTML, and putting them in the group
files area. Almost done too, whew! I'm not sure what
we're doing right now, but I think we have a
collective agreement to fiddle with verb systems for a
while. I get the sense that there's a philosophical
divergence on the project, so it's probably just as
well to take some time to explore the possibilities of
that (all though I wasn't good about it to start with
:P). I'm looking forward to getting all my
self-appointed clean-up work done, anyway, so I can
get down to considering new things, maybe doing some
new compositions. I'll tell you one thing, some of my
older compositions will never see the light of day
again if I can help it, you want to talk bad... but my
more recent stuff is not too bad, I think.

At the risk of revealing what a crazed person I am :),
here is my web site:

Anyways, I know my appearance on this list was
half-silly, but I really am reading the discussions as
much as I can get time to and getting a lot from it.
So carry on... :)


Find, Connect, Date!


Christophe Grandsire <christophe.grandsire@...>
Jan van Steenbergen <ijzeren_jan@...>
John Cowan <jcowan@...>
BP Jonsson <bpj@...>