Bloggers and Bloviators

A fellow I read about mentioned that he hates “bloggers and bloviators” because he thought they do more to exacerbate problems rather than to help. I didn’t take offense at the “blogger” comment, because although I do have a blog, which technically makes me a blogger, I’m not a capitalized Blogger. (I actually meant I wasn’t a major blogger, a blogger with a capital B, but it is also true that I don’t capitalize on my blog since I don’t make money from it.)

I don’t have much of a following because I tend to write about simple things and stay away from the topics that attract masses of readers: politics, sex, celebrities, clothes, food. The one really important thing I write about — grief for a spouse, life mate, soulmate— is only helpful to a small segment of the population, and certainly isn’t a topic one reads for its entertainment value. And now I seldom write about even that. Mostly I write to write — for the habit of it.

As for bloviators: according to Wikipedia, ‘bloviation is a style of empty, pompous, political speech that originated in Ohio and was used by US President Warren G. Harding, who described it as “the art of speaking for as long as the occasion warrants, and saying nothing”.’

Admittedly, I often say nothing of any import on this blog since, as I mentioned above, it’s more for the habit of writing than because I have anything significant to impart, but I am definitely not pompously political. Or even non-pompously political.

What I do like is the alliteration of the words “bloggers” and “bloviators,” which, of course, is why I am going through the motions of pretending I have something to say on the subject. And since apparently I don’t have anything to say, I’m going to cut this short lest I run the risk of becoming a bloviator myself.


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator.

Drabbles and Dribbles

My guest blogger today is Sheila Deeth, author of Christmas! Genesis to Revelation in 100 Words a Day and Easter! Creation to Salvation in 100 Words a Day. Shiela writes: 

I drabble. Technically, since drabble’s a noun, I should say I write drabbles. They’re defined in Wikipedia as “extremely short” works of fiction “exactly one hundred words in length.” But however short, they’re still stories, with beginning, middle and end; and they might even be fun to read, like haiku supersized. 

Dribbles are drabbles with fifty words. And double-drabbles have two hundred. 

It doesn’t take much to write a drabble; just a paragraph or two. And once I’ve typed my mini-masterpiece I can edit something that needs only moments to read. I learn to check, where’s this going? Has anything changed? Did I repeat myself when I should’ve found a synonym? And what can I delete-adjectives, adverbs? 

I learn to choose between showing and telling with only words for one scene, selecting details to draw in the reader, and exercising the gentle art of leaving some things out. 

With a novel, I’ll want readers to keep turning the pages. With a drabble, I hope to keep their thoughts churning. And maybe some small idea will stick, till one day my book hits the stores and glues itself to their questing hands. 

I drabble, and this article is double-drabble sized. 

The drabble below is one of a series I’m posting on for Thanksgiving (though it’s probably got more to do with Hanukah). There’s a dribbled version underneath.

How do you rebuild what is broken and dirtied and destroyed? Where do you begin? 

They ripped out the altar and built it new. They set new stones to reform the walls and cleansed the undergrowth that had wrecked the pavement. They brought back the lamp and the incense and table and arranged them in their place. And they prepared the sacrifice. 

But all their labors were in vain; there was scarcely oil even to light the lamp. 

How do you rebuild? You pray to God. Then the teaspoon of oil lasted eight days long and the Temple was restored. 

…and a dribble? 

They ripped out the altar, reset the stones, and cleansed the undergrowth that had wrecked the floor. They relit lamps, burned incense, and prepared the sacrifice. But light faded, the oil was gone, the lantern burning dry. 

They prayed and the oil held out, restored, eight glorious days and nights.