What Needs to be Said

There’s a fine line between a stream of consciousness and a babbling brook to nowhere. –Dan Harmon

Communication is an innate human necessity. We learn how to express our ideas from an early age, crying and pointing and grunting. These skills are developed, in most, as we get older. Some humans are quiet and only speak when absolutely necessary, while others communicate just be making noise; the former tends to get the correct amount of reception. Writing holds the same value.

Many years ago, I use to sit with my grandfather at his farm. He spoke very little, but would answer the hundreds of questions I threw at him. Even as a child, I would wonder why a man could know so much and be quiet about it. He had lived through the Great Depression, fought in World War II as a tanker with General Patton, raised a family, manged a farm, rose through the ranks of textile mill, and settled into a quiet retirement. I remember how everyone turned to him when he spoke, conveying that it must be important if he had something to say.

Of the many, many blogs that I follow, I tend to see the same trend; after all, it is still communication. Many post to be posting something, and others post only when something is good enough to communicate. Blogging is a finicky thing. Don’t post enough and the blogger won’t be noticed enough to attract new followers. Post too much and the readers click “like” and move on. I have been blogging now for almost a year. I don’t have even 200 followers, but I can’t force myself to blog just to be blogging. Maybe the quality of what I write isn’t up to par. Maybe I bounce too much and don’t stick to one subject area. I guess it just comes down to quality over quantity. I truly want to write well and use my time to hone my skills as a writer. There are blogs that when something is posted I savor, for example The Drunken Cyclist and Northern Bike and Fossil Cycle and Ashley Nicole and others.

I appreciate quality things, like having one Luminox watch over having thirty different Timex watches. The same goes for writing: Words placed in the right area at the right time are golden. Yes, there are the rare birds like Henry James who can discuss a man’s shirt button for three paragraphs, but 99% of us are not Mr. James. We, as writers, must search for that perfect word, sentence, or topic . . . and if not found, remain quiet. Don’t “speak” just to make noise. The art of communication can’t be lost in a sea of words. We must continue to learn the craft.




9 thoughts on “What Needs to be Said

  1. My biggest difficulty is when I write angry. Political season always causes me trouble… So much junk out there, fodder for ignoramuses, it drives me up a wall. Ah well, a fella like me can’t have everything perfect. God forbid, I’d probably try to take a month off to enjoy it and watch everything fall back to disrepair. Nice post brother. You got me thinking.

    1. Thing is Jim you have variety, that is, lots to write about be it politics, stuff for noobs, adventures. Dont stop-except maybe the politics ;o)

      1. Funny thing is, I was a poli-sci major in college, for about two weeks – roughly until I found out my professor was slightly to the left of Gorbachev. There was no chance I was passing that course.

  2. I’m with you chief, I don’t post too often and usually it’s sporadically. I’m also a hack at writing, I tend to write as I think out loud…
    Sometimes a bit disconnected or unorganized. But that’s okay with me!
    (the pay really stinks! lol)

    Keep up the solid work!


  3. your mention of henry james and shirt buttons as a reflection on how the mundane can be beautiful in the right hands seems perfectly timed for the 100th birthday of dylan thomas.

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