Portrait of William Shakespeare looking spry and intellectual.

BatyrAshirbayev98 via Wikimedia Commons

Inspiring Brave Urgent Necessary Essential Powerful Penetrating Unflinching Concise Articulate Eloquent Scintillating Pugalistic

Big Brain
Descriptors Used to Praise Writers, Ranked

Public flattery is the lifeblood of writers, pundits, and other professionals who pontificate for a living because they all have or once had very low self-esteem that needs constant puffery in order to function. The best way to do this is to retweet their work accompanied by compliments that convey just how much of a big brain they are, while also conveying how much of a big brain that you, as the reader of such cerebral work, are, as well. Of course, not all adjectives are hefty enough to bear the weight of this dual purpose. If you’re going to kiss intellectual ass, might as well make it count — here’s a handy lexicon of descriptors to use, in order of worst to best:

25. Inspiring

24. Brave

23. Urgent

22. Necessary

21. Essential

20. Powerful

19. Penetrating

18. Unflinching

17. Concise

16. Articulate

15. Eloquent

14. Scintillating

13. Pugilistic

12. Astute

11. Trenchant

10. Something about their “prose”

9. Luminous

8. Clear-eyed

7. Rare talent

6. Extraordinary

5. Brilliant

4. The Bard reincarnated

3. Certified genius

2. Incisive

1. Sharp