How many times have you sat down to write an article or an email and cannot find the right words? No matter how much we may like to think it does, writing does not come easy for everyone. For this reason, websites like OneLook can help you become a better writer without the tuition costs.
Why Use OneLook?
The last thing you want to do is have your writing be full of repetition, phrases or words that can interrupt the flow of your writing. Identifying repeated words and replacing them with synonyms will not only help your writing become better, it will help you become a better writer. Using OneLook, you can find dozens of alternatives including nouns, adjectives, verbs and adverbs. It all depends on what you are trying to say, but with OneLook, you know there are multiple ways to say it.
How to Use OneLook
OneLook is essentially a reverse dictionary. Type the word or concept you want to say into the search bar, and it will generate a list of words or phrases that match your search.
Discover Similar Words
One of the primary use cases for OneLook is to look up similar words. For example, if you look up “Small Car” on the site, you will see “compact” as a result. OneLook offers 100 different possibilities, including some properly named small cars like “minicabs,” “sidecar,” etc. It’s here that OneLook really begins to shine, as you can try similar search results for anything you can think of and discover far more writing options than you would with any general thesaurus tool.
I’m Looking for a Word
Let’s say you are writing an email or note and absolutely cannot think of the word you are want to use. This is when the “concept” option in OneLook will be especially handy. Go to the search box and enter the concept in a few words, in a sentence or even with a single word.
For example, let’s say you are looking up the word for what kids play in with sand. In this case, you would go to OneLook and type in “*:play in the sand” and search. The first and second results are almost assuredly what you are looking for with “sandpit” or “sandbox.” You now have the word you need to keep writing.
One of the other aspects of the site is its ability to help you find words that you know the beginning or end of but not the full writing. For example, let’s say you were trying to think of the word “meteorologist” but couldn’t think of the full spelling. Using OneLook, you can type in “met????ogist,” queue the search, and it shows “meteorologist.” The number of question marks you use is directly related to the number of letters you are trying to identify. In this example, we needed to identify four letters so the search query used four question marks.
Best Way to Phrase
Another area that can get you tongue-tied while writing is how to properly phrase something. Let’s say you know the word you want to use is “car” but you can’t think of the right phrase. Head to the OneLook website and type in “**car**” and search. You will now see 100 results of phrases that include the word car in a variety of examples.
If the results are not as narrow as you may like, look toward the top right of the page and locate the yellow box. Inside this box is a great way to filter the 100 matches to better narrow down your results. In the top row, click on “Sort By: Commonness,” and watch the results rework themselves. It’s almost an entirely new list of 100 results all relating back to cars. Alternatively, you can also “Filter by commonness: Common Words and Phrases,” and try those results.
Google Docs Add-On
For those of you who spend your time writing in Google Docs, OneLook will yet again show its merits. With a dedicated Google Docs Add-On, the service becomes infinitely more valuable to integrate into your writing in real time. Instead of skipping back and forth between tabs, OneLook is directly connected to your docs, allowing you to research, define and search for any query without leaving the site. With six different function buttons, including Synonyms, Triggers, Rhymes, Complete, Adjectives and Nouns, OneLook yet again shows why it’s far more than a thesaurus.
Triggers will show you words commonly associated with your search while rhymes show you, unsurprisingly, rhymes. Complete will help complete the word you are starting to type, while adjectives show you adjectives commonly used to describe your search word. Nouns is the reverse, where it shows you words commonly described by your search term. This works best when the search term is an adjective. Bringing all of this together adds all of the best features of the OneLook.com website, as well as RhymeZone, to improve your writing in ways you could not have originally envisioned.
Putting It All Together
At the end of the day, with every search query, you will find better phrases, words or sentences you can incorporate into your writing. With each new entry, your writing will quickly improve and become clearer and potentially more successful at accomplishing your goal.
If you are looking to proofread your writing instead, try out Grammarly or MIcrosoft Editor.