I read a pretty good amount. Not nearly as much as a few decades back, but enough to keep me well informed regarding news and entertained. Have since I was a lot younger. Used to write a lot as well, but not nearly so much presently either.
Lately it’s become apparent that I use words in ways other people wouldn’t, usually in a non classic definition that makes sense to me, but perhaps not as much to other people.
There are two reasons for this, one is an incomplete understanding of the word itself, which stems from reading it in multiple situations and applying meaning over time. That meaning sticks with me and is flexible, it can be used in multiple scenarios that make sense to me (and that may make sense to others, but perhaps not.)
This is a common thing among most people. You learn words by hearing them spoken and reading them. Most people learn words by hearing them over and over, so their meanings are tied up in how they’ve heard them, often from people around them or television and radio. A big part of my vocab comes from reading, often classical literature and non contemporary things. Also common for many folks today.
The other reason has more to do with creativity and applying abstracts in writing. Writing in abstract and using different meanings is memorable and enjoyable as a reader in my opinion, so writing with it is a tool of sorts. Many of my favorite artists use words in ways that make you think differently. Bob Dylan, Ian Bavitz, John K. Samson, and many others do this masterfully.
It’s common for me to think, write and speak this way and evidently it comes across curious to some. Probably anachronistic to many also. However it’s so slight in most instances that I really don’t notice it; or at least didn’t until recently as it’s been made abundantly clear. Yet it is obvious upon further examination. When I really sit down and look at the definition of the word in question there’s often a true disparity, more pronounced in some places and less in others, but there it is. It’s unintentional, and sometimes it’s pretty funny.
This has been a now and again recurrence since my teenage years, though I couldn’t pin point the time. I can understand the perspective that it’s silly to use words in any other way than the agreed upon definition. I don’t agree with that perspective, to me that’s like saying music is silly or poems are frivolous and unneeded, but it does make sense that certain vocabulary should be used in certain forums. And that’s something to work. How you choose to communicate matters.