“Hobbiest” makes me quiver every time I see it, like it is more than a simple spelling error, more than a stand-alone, single-word error.

First, it shows an ignorance of the “-ist” suffix, meaning a person who does something, such as “hobbyist”, “pianist”, “artist”.

Second, ignorance of the “-est” suffix, as a superlative, such as “greatest”, “meanest”, or “dumbest.”

Third, pronunciation ignorance.  The short “e” and short “i” are distinct sounds, as in “mist” and “nest.”

Fourth, misapplication of the y-to-i rule that turns “knobby” to “knobbier” and “knobbiest”, “funny” to “funnier” and “funniest.”

And fifth, “hobbyist” is a slightly unsual word; it should stick in your head.  Especially if you are a hobbyist, and you are thinking about, reading about, and writing about (in the blog comment that is boiling my blood) the state of being a hobbyist, or the strengths, weaknesses, and practices of the hobbyist.

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