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actorI use the word “actor” to mean one who creates works (of art), in whatever medium. I doubt this is a standard usage, because I invented it myself—I needed a word with that meaning, and, as I will now explain, “actor” was the best I could come up with.
The first word I considered was the obvious one, “artist”, but according to both my intuition and my dictionary, it has implications about the medium.
One who creates works of art, esp. a painter, sculptor, or musician.
Since the works I am concerned with are mostly books and movies, this was not ideal.
The next word that came to mind was “agent”, i.e., the agent by which a work is created. Unfortunately, while that's a valid meaning for the word, it wasn't the one that jumped to mind in this context—I kept thinking of “agent” as an artist's agent, i.e., one who arranges, or acts as a proxy.
However, looking at “agent” wasn't a total loss. The word “agent” is derived from Latin—it comes from the present participle of the verb “ago”, to do, and so means basically “one who is doing”. This suggestion of activity in the present wasn't exactly what I wanted; I was looking for something more along the lines of “one who does”. Fortunately, there's another part of speech that has exactly that meaning, and the corresponding word is “actor”.
Even the word “actor” isn't quite perfect, because it brings to mind the idea of an actor in a play or movie, but I'm sticking with it because it has a sound basis in Latin.
I did also consider using “creator” or “worker”, but each of these has its own problems.
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@ March (2000)