5 Sci Fi Writing Prompts – Novums
Indie authors: Murky biz advice, gray legal issues

A quick lesson: Suped up vs. souped up

Among the Auto-2934064_1920more interesting idioms in our language is souped up, which describes a car that has been modified to go fast. On its face, the idiom makes no sense – soup hardly is “fast,” after all.

Indeed, suped up seems to make more sense, as you can modify a car to go faster by using a supercharger, an air compressor that allows your engine to burn more fuel, hence giving it more power.

But that’s just the kind of mistake writers with little knowledge about cars would make.

Souped up is the correct spelling (and gets more search engine hits than suped up, at that). The term souped up predates the invention of superchargers and initially referred to any horse that had been injected with something to increase its speed. In fact, any concoction that packed a lot of power – including nitroglycerine – was called a “soup.”

While referring to a brew that increases power as a “soup” has fallen out of favor (pun intended), the variant souped up, meaning an object that has been modified for increased power, remains, at least with cars.

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