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"Making up your own words shows vision and creativity! Visiotivity!"
Barney Stinson, How I Met Your Mother

When a character tries to be cool by "enhancitizing" his speech patterns with what he thinks are Perfectly Cromulent Words or phrases.

Can be used to show that a character is dorky and self-absorbed; also a common characteristic of Cloudcuckoolanders and characters with mental disorders: in this case, it is a type of Cloudcuckoolanguage, and may overlap with Talkative Loon. It may result in a character speaking entirely in a language of his/her own invention. The same characters will often sprinkle in Gratuitous Foreign Language alongside their own glossarizzle, often horribly-pronounced.

Compare Delusions of Eloquence, Forced Meme, Malaproper, Personal Dictionary, and You Keep Using That Word.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Karen of Kiniro Mosaic speaks mainly broken Japanese. She also uses custom words like "Ohayou goshaimashu" (Good Myowrning), which her class then copied from her because they found it cute.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Gretchen Wiener from Mean Girls is constantly trying to turn the word "fetch" into a teen slang word meaning "cool". It doesn't work.
    Regina: Gretchen, stop trying to make 'fetch' happen! It's not going to happen!

  • This is a lot of the words in the poem Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll. Seriously, pick a noun in that poem, and you have a greater than even chance that Carroll made it up.
  • William Shakespeare is believed to have coined a large amount of the common idioms and words in the English Language.note  They pervade the language to such an extent that most people don't even know they're quoting. For example, among the vocabulary he's contributed are obscure, niche phrases such as "advertising", "bedroom", "blanket", "eyeball", "radiance", "torture"...
  • In The Dresden Files book Summer Knight, Harry refers to a creature as a "chlorofiend" mostly because he doesn't want to have to say "plant monster". It doesn't work out for him; every time he uses it his friends ask "What's a chlorofiend?", then after he explains they tell him he should have just said "plant monster" in the first place.
  • Nicholas in Frindle, who created the titular word as an experiment. The implications behind his made-up word actually catching on spiral out of his control and spark the events of the plot.
  • Gail Carson Levine's The Princess Tales: In The Fairy's Return, Robin's brothers do this all the time, and their father thinks they're very clever for it. At one point, Robin tries in an attempt to fit in, only for his brothers to dismiss his efforts.
  • In Shadow Play by Charles Baxter, the main character's insane mother Jeanne tends to make up words like "corilineal" and "zarklike".
  • Stain: Lyra's cousin Wrathalyne has a habit of coining words because she believes it will make her look more intelligent. All it does is make her look, shall we say, idiosensical.
  • Tales of Pirx the Pilot: while the man's not an "on-screen" character, in one story Pirx reminisces about a professor who had a tendency to do that. To prepare for an exam, Pirx dug up and memorized all the silly neologisms the man unsuccessfully tried to push through to get into his good graces. It worked.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Blackadder, Doctor Johnson is boasting of having written the first English dictionary and that he has taken care to include every English word. Blackadder discomforts him by spontaneously introducing several completely made-up words and putting them into plausible contexts.
  • Doctor Who: The Doctor, particularly his tenth and eleventh incarnations, is fond of inventing nonsense Techno Babble words on the spot to see what sticks. He liked "Timey Wimey" enough to keep using it consistently.
  • Gus from Drop the Dead Donkey spoke like this almost to the point of unintelligibility as part of his "management speak". The character was a parody of all the phrase-coining 90s managers who seemed to believe making up new expressions would change the workplace. Sadly for Gus, it never worked.
  • Barney in How I Met Your Mother is constantly coming up with new words and expressions that he tries to popularize. He claims that doing so shows vision and creativity — "visiotivity".
  • Britta in Community indulges in this:
    Britta: That's called a COMPLISULT, part compliment, part insult, he invented them, I coined the term. See what I just did there. That's an EXPLANIBRAG.

  • "Professor" Stanley Unwin's spoken narrative links in the "Happiness Stan" cycle of The Small Faces album Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake. Unwin makes full use of his trademark garbled English he called "Unwinese" or "Basic Engly Twenty Fido".
    Now, like all real life experience stories, this also begins once a polly tito, and Happiness Stan, whose life evolved the ephemeral colour dreamy most, and his deep joy in this being the multicolour of the moon. Oh yes. His home a victoriana charibold, the four-wheel folloped ft-ft-ft out the back. Now, as eve on his deep approach, his eye on the moon. Alltime sometime deept joy of a full moon scintyladen dangly in the heavenly bode. But now only half! So, gathering all behind him the hintermost, he ploddy-ploddy forward into the deep complicadent fundermold of the forry to sort this one out.
  • Rapper E40 has a claim to originating a lot of slang from calling weed "Broccoli" to saying something "Slaps". As he boasts in "Tell Me When To Go"
    "I'm from the Bay where we hyphy and go dumb
    From the soil where them rappers be getting their lingo from"

    Newspaper Comics 
  • Calvin and Hobbes: In one strip, Calvin tells his dad that since the meanings of words are arbitrary, he can intentionally make dialogue unintelligible to others by replacing words with other random words. Of course, Calvin's dad knows this isn't exactly a new idea...
    Calvin: Don't you think that's totally Spam? It's lubricated! Well, I'm phasing.
    Calvin's Dad: (making a peace hand sign) Marvy. Fab. Far out.

    Video Games 
  • Fallen London has Mr. Pages, who can't get through a sentence without inventing words practically wholesale. Though he does put more of an effort than most, as his made up words have relatively solid etymological roots.
  • The second episode of Penny Arcade Adventures mentions a mental patient who only speaks in a language of his own invention.
  • The K'Tang of Star Control 3 do this in almost every sentence, and are completely unaware of how stupid it makes them sound. It is part of their self-aggrandizing cultural personality, seeing as they are actually quite puny and gullible, being puppets of the Ploxis in stark contrast to the image they try to project.

    Web Animation 

    Web Comics 
  • Homestuck has a number of insane words; "Appearifier", "Sendificator", "Transportalizer", and so on. It will never call something a "Teleporter" or a "Portal" when it can call it a "Escapilizer" or a "Transmaterializer" instead (and that's not listing other objects or concepts, like cruxtruders or ectobiology). There's also Karkat, who tends to invent insults by smushing together words, although most of his examples are distinctly not work safe.
  • Robin in Shortpacked! expresses her dislike for things by saying they're "totally babies" (or, if it's really bad, "it's so babies, it's babies Macintyre!"), despite Ultra-Car telling her that this won't become a thing, however much she says it. It catches on among Shortpacked fans, but not so much in the strip itself.
  • Penny Arcade:
    • This Penny Arcade comic shows that Neologizing and Advertising practically goes hand in hand. Behold, the N-air-G! Containing Guaranama and Balinko!
    • Still on the topic of Penny Arcade, the entirety of the Catsby and Twisp comics is composed of this kind of language.

    Web Original 
  • Internet funnyman Seanbaby has a knack for coming up with Perfectly Cromulent Words that have no definition, but sound like they should. Here's one sample:
    "If you've never tried the Power Glove, it was a lot like translating your input into Eskimo, then Korean, then back into Regular. So for example, if your impotent flailing was trying to say "WALK RIGHT," the signal that made it to your Nintendo was 'SPUCULENT HAMTASM.'"
  • The Powerthirst commercials have portmanteau such as "Manergy" and "Preposterone". Now in "Shockolate", "Rawberry", and "Manana" flavors.
  • Stampy's Lovely World: Stampy himself makes up quite a few words (e.g. 'googlies' for monsters/hostile mobs and 'Lovely Jubbly Love-Love Petals' for poppies, formerly roses), partially to keep his speech child-friendly and partially because he enjoys it.
  • This Very Wiki occasionally runs into problems with users trying too hard to invoke TV Tropes Will Ruin Your Vocabulary, which leads to frequent issues with Trope-Namer Syndrome.

    Western Animation 
  • Homer Simpson has a tendency for oddly pronouncing words in The Simpsons. Some may originate from his low vocabulary, but other times he just seems to have an eccentric dialect.
    Homer: So, what do you like, Lisa? Vio-ma-lin? Tuba-ma-ba? Oboe-mo-boe?
    • And in another episode:
      Homer: Tramempoline!
  • Shifu's father Shirong in Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness annoys Shifu by doing this.
    Shifu: Don't do that!
    Shirong: What?
    Shifu: Make up words! "Infantisular", "fortisrumpionate", "reveltrefication". Do you have any idea how confused I was as a child?!
    Shirong: I assure you, my motives were entirely oprobastian!

    Real Life 
  • Truth in Television: making up neologisms is actually a common symptom of schizophrenia, autism, and a number of other mental disorders.
  • Wilhelm Reich, a psychologist whose work hugely influenced all manner of literary and New Age and pseudoscientific circles and little of actual science, had a penchant for this. At least one of his words stuck: "orgone", a supposed form of life energy binding everything together. You may stumble on it once in a while in contexts of mad scientists and psychic powers, but even then, usually tongue-in-cheek.