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Is there a single word to describe someone who loves to talk/chat about lots of different things? The words I've found are all derogatory and I'm looking for a word that means it in an endearing way.

thanks :)

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    Talkative and many of its synonyms (thesaurus.com/browse/talkative) are not derogatory. Is it in particular a word for talking about lots of different things? Not just talking a lot? – Avon Jul 11 '15 at 9:56
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    Thank you - not necessarily about lots of different things, but just someone who likes to chat about stuff - I guess the closest term I can think of is 'chewing the cud' = chatting in an aimless manner. Just wittering away about any topic. – Donna Jul 11 '15 at 10:40
  • Occasionally derogatory, but more often stated with amusement is "Chatty Cathy", the name of a popular girl's doll in the 60s. – Hot Licks Jul 11 '15 at 11:55
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Most words that describe someone who talks too much are slightly derogatory - due to the fact that it is seen as an annoyance. The nicest word you can use is: chatterbox. (Usually when describing an obnoxious child to it's own mother.)

  • That's far from the nicest word you can use. Read on...,, – Brian Hitchcock Jul 11 '15 at 13:15
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"Loquacious," is possibly not used enough to have any derogatory connotations.

"Sarah was certainly a loquacious woman."

The OED lists it as such:

  1. Given to much talking; talkative.

Although I particularly like the more poetic sense 2, which is (in my opinion) an entirely positive attribute.

  1. transf. Of birds, water, or the like: Chattering, babbling. Chiefly poet.
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I'd go for directly to "talkative" and "chatty" -- I wouldn't consider either of these inherently derogative, although people who dislike such people will obviously see it that way.

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You could say she is a good conversationalist. Merriam-Webster online defines this as

a person who likes or is good at conversation

So on the one hand it can refer to somebody who enjoys talking, but on the other hand it has the positive connotation of somebody who possesses the skill to hold forth on a variety of topics (particularly polite or refined conversation) - something you might attribute to a diplomat or courtier, for example. That's the kind of usage of the term here:

Good small talk makes us likable, but it's easy to get rusty — how to avoid dominating and being dominated in a conversation – subtitle of piece by Elizabeth Bernstein, "How to Be a Better Conversationalist", Wall Street Journal (12 August 2014)

A later section in the piece is quite relevant for you too:

There is an art to elegantly starting, sustaining and ending a dialogue with strangers or friends. Experts call it conversational intelligence. Others call it the gift of gab. Hard as it may be for chatty people to believe, not everyone is born with it. For many, it takes study and practice.

"Conversationally intelligent" is more about skill in the art of conversation than enjoyment thereof, but might still be useful for your purposes. "Gift of (the) gab" would work very well for you. (In British English the "the" is conventional.)

the gift of the gab (British, American & Australian) also the gift of gab (American): an ability to speak easily and confidently and to persuade people to do what you want. An Irishman, he had the gift of the gab. You might hate what he said but you had to listen.The Free Dictionary

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The Dutch language uses the expression "Spraak waterfall" a waterfall of speach for someone that is so busy talking that it is difficult to get a word in.

How about "Verbally gifted" as a term of endearment ?

Or "Communication wizard"

"Retorical talent"

"Multitalend Chatter"

"Chatting animal"

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    Thank you Nikita I love the term 'waterfall of speech' :) – Donna Jul 11 '15 at 10:41
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I don't think that loquacious has a negative connotation.

Characterized by or showing a tendency to talk a great deal.

thefreedictionary.com

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If one is trying not to offend, the trick is to use a word just rare enough that most people will not conjure up any negative connotations. For example, "glib" is no more negative, by definition, than the others below; yet, because it is better known, more people have a negative impression.

Or, one might use a word that has another meaning that seems neutral

Or, one can use a euphemism:

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