Saturday, September 24, 2011


Bear has, for a very long time, been a writer, a broadcaster, a journalist. An award winning journalist, even.

So, from that perspective, Bear tends to treat his blogs as if they are journals of sorts.

Just the facts, ma'am, and stuff like that.

Solid, well-thought-out, well-expressed. Even the spelling is (usually) good.

Yada, yada, yada.

And kind readers leave the odd, thoughtful comment. Not that their comments are odd; they're not. They are delightful! (Then, there's the Blog Fodder, but that's another story entirely.*)

Anyhow, I did something different.

I published a light, fluffy piece, including a picture of Bear with a baby. (While I did that, I sat quaking, fearing my Writer's Licence would be revoked for doing such stuff and nonsense).

And what happened?

I've received more comments to that than to anything else that I've written. And, I've still got my Writer's Licence!

Well, then.

I understand that each literary type has it's own style, it's own conventions. Poetry and newspapers have very different styles. You know that.

Has journalist Bear not really understood the conventions of blogging? Has Bear be writing a blog like a journalist, instead of like a blogger? Should Bear be making changes? Should Bear work in multiple styles, on different blogs? Hmmmm.

I'm not sure where this will go, but it seems this is time to reconsider.

The story is told of a career sailor, who eventually retired from the Navy.
At the time of his retirement he thought back on his time as a painter.
On board, he had worked in the aft section of the ships on which he had served.
So he said he had left no stern untoned.

*The Blog Fodder is the only blogger who has met Bear in person. And that was decades (yes, decades) before there were such things as blogs, or Facebook, or Twitter. Meaning that BF knows way too much about Bear. Though, to tell the truth, he has been very gracious.


The Blog Fodder said...

Journalistic skills simply mean you should (and do) write well. Some blog entries can be fact and some fiction (like news stories?); some heart warming, some blood chilling. You are allowed to mix 'em up. Theme blogs are highly over rated. Keep 'em guessing.

Besides it was an awesome good picture of an old bear with cub.

And I would never tell anyone you once worked for a radio station that played only country music.

Jackie said...

Ooooooh! Kuntry Music! Get outa here!!! No way...!!
I love some country songs....they have heart...yep, they do.
As for your blog, it's your blog...write and/or post whatever pleases you, my friend. We bloggers are here with you because it pleases us....
The Bear with Baby photo you posted was just tooooo cute...You know how it is with a bear and a cub, Rob...can't resist commenting on them. Makes us feel like family and friends to see our Blogging Buddy's photo!!
Continue with your style of writing...whatever you feel like saying or sharing. We'll be right here.... (strummin' along with that country beat)....reading and commenting....and lovin'it!!

Karen Jones Gowen said...

I must have missed that post! Blogging is really an interesting thing. Is it showcase writing? Journaling? Chatting with friends? To me it's all of these things, which is why I love it!

Rob-bear said...

® Blog Fodder: Thanks for the ideas.
But why not tell them that our country music station rose to the top station in our area while I worked there? We were good.
Sadly, I don't think the station is as good now, even if it is still at the top.

Rob-bear said...

® Teacher's Pet: Strangely, country music is about the only kind of music to which I am not drawn by inclination.
Which is really weird, because the radio stations at which I've worked were country music stations.
I much prefer classics, for example, or folk.
Thanks for the comments, Jaquie. As I say, the people who follow my blots are among the smartest folk in the blogsphere. I am so fortunate that way!

Rob-bear said...

® KarenG: What you missed was something called "This is the Week that Was." It is two before this one on reconsidering.
I think blogging is fascinating. It encourages me to keep writing, and interacting with folks all around the world, and with really interesting people at that.
Thanks for your note.

ReformingGeek said...

It bears thinking about.


Just write from your heart and they will come.

John Teal said...

Hi, Rob-Bear, I'm new here and intrigued to know more. Hence I have become your newest follower.

As for writing styles, I'm with ReformingGeek. Write in your own style whatever that is on the day. People will like it or not. They are getting your wisdom for free so they can hardly complain now can they :)

The Blog Fodder said...

The station did play good C&W for sure. I only like hurtin' music when I am in the mood. Mostly I like easy listening but every FM station that played easy listening, a cross section of everything that was easy on the nerves and nice to listen to has closed down. Why?

Also you notice every one ignored your dreadful pun? In some cultures you could be stoned for that. In other cultures you have to be stoned to enjoy it.

cheshire wife said...

Write however you want to. It is your style. There is no point in trying to be something that you are not.

Frances said...

Bear, what fascinates me about blogging and reading blogs is that this format really frees folks up to do what they wish, to express themselves in whatever way strikes them at the moment they click submit.

Lots of us have so many interests, curiosities, talents, experiences, etc., that do not always get aired in our daily walking around lives. Blogging really can help stretch us in many ways.

And so, please do write what pleases you! (I am actually not at all a fan of country music, except for some very old traditional tunes, but if you ever write about it, I might learn something.) I usually do learn something from your posts!


potsoc said...

A blog belongs to the blogger who shares it with other bloggers and even non bloggers, such as Dafna for instance. The beauty of it is that you are not restricted, save for decency reasons of course, to one style or theme or subject.
Write what you feel like writing and we will keep coming.

Diana said...

My daughter was a journalist. And I enjoyed reading her work however her work did not let us see her. The real person behind the writing.
Your posted photo gave us a glimpse of who you are Bear. And I think as Bloggers we're all a bit nosy!!
Love Di ♥

Rob-bear said...

® Reforming Geek: Thanks. You're very helpful, and your comment Bears noting.
I think the challenge is that, more often than not, I write with my head instead of my heart. That makes a very profound difference.

® RJR: Thanks for coming by and following along.
I confess that when I saw RJR I thought "Nabisco." Shows you where my brain is. Sorry.
Things may seem a bit crazy here. Even the notion of a Bear writing a blog is a bit, well, odd.
As for writing my own style, I'm beginning to wonder what that is. So many things are changing in my life.

Rob-bear said...

® BF: C&W music is, um, "different." It sure isn't Bach, or Stan Rogers. Can't tell you about easy listening stations.
As for the pun, one has to be cultured in a certain way to enjoy them. You and I certainly are; others, not so much, apparently. Maybe not at all. (They're missing so much!) For exmple, I keep thinking about Americans forces, caught between Iraq and a hard place.

Rob-bear said...

® Cheshire Wife: Great to see you back! I hope you're well, and that cottage renovations are coming along. Sorry, too, about your MIL.
As I said earlier, a lot of things are changing in my life, and I'm not quite sure about a lot it, or them, or whatever.

® Frances: Thanks you for sharing your thoughts. Not sure what I'm doing. I'll let you know when I've figured it out.
BTW, you can borrow my soap box any time you want. Or, bring yours here.

Rob-bear said...

® potsoc: I will certainly keep on writing. How I do that remains to be seen.

® Diana: You've hit the point precisely. As a "just the facts" journalist, I'm always careful to not let "me" get too involved. Though from the selection of facts involved, you can gather my position.
Maybe it's time for me to let "me" out a bit more, or give "me" more freedom. Hmmmm.

Jackie said...

Must add a footnote...
Loved your pun. I love puns in general....and usually groan with a smile after I read them. Keep on keepin' on....

Rob-bear said...

® Teacher's Pet: With comments like yours I can Bear the though or Bear-ing on, and do it.

Golden Eagle said...

I don't think there are really conventions when it comes to blogging. There are all different kinds of people who blog, with different sides; a lighter post in among the serious ones might change the overall tone or feel of a blog, but certainly not in a negative way.

And whatever you write, we will still be checking out your posts. :)

Chatty Crone said...

Okay - I think you should never give up - write from the heart and you will learn to grin and 'bear' it.


Rob-bear said...

® Golden Eagle: Thanks.
Just a thought, though. Bear, once thoroughly ensconced, is hard to get rid of. (OK, that should be, once ensconced, it is hard to get rid of Bear. No ending sentences with prepositions! You know Churchill's line.)

® Chatty Cone: Thanks. I'll keep writing. That is not in question. Just what and how. Hmmmm.

Rubye Jack said...

I was thinking, oops, about what I like in blogs and I suppose it is mostly the ideas people have--how they see the world, and I think, oops, this comes through in your blog. Honestly, I feel like I know you and when I saw your photo it kind of sealed the deal with that little itty bitty baby.

Manzanita said...

A punster. I love puns. My favorite form of humor. Did I read somewhere puns were the first form of humor? I don't know. No one puns anymore. You must have more puns in your pun bank. I would listen and crack a smile. That's the reaction you give to puns.

Rob-bear said...

® Towanda: Thanks so much. Yes; getting to know people through their blogs. And I think I'm getting to know you, too, by seeing your thoughts and feelings on screen.

® Manzanita: Puns may not the original form of humour, but they are the most literate.
"No one puns anymore"? Surely you jest. If you and I do, that makes two, and I remember a wonderful British woman who was good at them, too. Would that make us the three clever dears? Hmmmm.

Lydia said...

I think that what The Blog Fodder wrote sums up what I was going to say (except the part about the yee-haw music). I love your writing style, and think that your blog is simply growing along the way as you elect to share more of your life - even if that means one picture that touched the hearts of many. I think what works is you being natural!

Rob-bear said...

® Lydia: Thanks for the support.

Connie said...

I think that's the beauty of blogs--they can be anything you want them to be! You alone get to decide what you put on yours. No one can tell you it's wrong because everyone expresses themselves in his or her own way. You can tell jokes one day, post pictures of flowers the next, and write a controversial newsy-type essay the next. Thank you for stopping by and visiting my blogs today! :)

Rob-bear said...

® Daisy: Thanks so much for stopping to visit the Bear's place, and leaving your kind comments. I like good comments almost as much as I like hunny, er, ah, honey.

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

Hi bear. I'm so glad you stopped by my blog being as I'm a bear fan myself. Never known a bear who had journalistic skills before now!

Rob-bear said...

® Lisa @ Two Bears Farm: Welcome to my blog, and thank you for visiting.
If they even put me in jail (zoo) they would have to put up a sign saying, "Beware of the peculiar Bear." Because when I'm annoyed, I start growling in iambic pentameter. When I'm really, really angry, I start sounding like Glenn Beck.
I'll be back to the farm to check out the Bears, again.
BTW, did you see my picture with a (practically) newborn cub? It's two posts before this one on reconsidering.

Lins' lleisio said...

I cannot write, but I blog. I do not have the number of followers as you do. Says it all really!

I think your 'fluffy' post touched all sorts of people at many different levels. Carry on as you are Mr Bear. You have a creative beautiful soul; which shines out through your words. x

Rob-bear said...

® Lins' lleisio: Thanks for your very kind thoughts.
Having followed your blog for some time, I would say you are a great writer/blogger. (How can you blog without writing?) I love the stories you tell, about home, family, community, friends, and the land. Which is why I keep following.

Amanda Summer said...

love the joke, bear ~

your readers reacted to that photo of you with the baby because it's wonderful to get a peek inside one's private life - and photos are always a wonderful way to do that. but i agree with cheshire wife - ultimately you should write what you want. i love your style no matter what.

Rob-bear said...

® amanda: Thanks for your comments.
I'm glad you were brave enough to say you liked the joke.
And I dropped over to your sister Dorothy's blog. Fascinating.
You do raise an interesting point. Bear has always been an introvert, and a fairly private person. I've tended to treat my blogs in the same way.
Receiving all these comments has been a very significant experience.
Thanks, again. To you and other readers who have shared their thoughts.

Ivy said...

No don't change! You are who you are and you are precious to your readers.(and a lot of other people too, I am sure) It is always a pleasure to come to your blog. I don't always agree with what you write, I sometimes don't even understand what you are saying,but I love reading your blog with and without pictures and being able to put a face to your stories, or more correctly realising that for once the picture I had of you in my mind matches the reality almost 100% was very nice.

Helen said...

For starters ... I am a country music fan ... my grandmother's whistling in the kitchen inspired me. Second, I love the Bear's writing style. Third, thanks for commenting on Red Suede Shoes post .. unfortuantely that poem was written from personal experience (unbeknownst to me at the time, an acquaintance was abusing his daughter .. I remember the red shoes he gave her when she was barely a teen. The story did not have a happy ending for his daughter or for him.)

Kim said...

This always happens to me. I make this really poignant (at least I think) statement about life or love or something. And no one comments. Then i post something out of the ordinary and people go nuts.

Blogging is way different than anything else out there. It's so unpredictable.

Rob-bear said...

® Ivy: Thanks you for dropping by and sharing your thoughts.
Sorry I'm a bit unintelligible at times. Translating my thoughts from Bear into Human language can be challenging.
And I'm glad I'm like I describe myself, or how people imagine me.

® Helen: Ah, bold, poetic lady. Thanks for the compliment on the writing. And I appreciate how you love country music.
As for the red shoes, I had a feeling, from the poem and what was on your blog, that the story would not end happily. So sad. Reminds me a bit of Suzanne Prentice song, "Brass Buckles." That song was on the "No Play" list at one of the stations where I worked in the newsroom. And ocasionallay played records. (

® Kim: Welcome to my blog. And thanks for stopping by.
Yeah, the piece that should win the Pulitzer prize goes unnoticed; the piece that's totally silly draws crowds. But it's all in who happens to be reading which day, and how the writing strikes them. Hopefully, not knocking them over.

Sylvia Ney said...

Nice post. It's funny what readers respond too. I have a journalism background myself so I understand where you are coming from. It seems like the posts that mean the most to me, or I work the hardest on get little response sometimes while the "fluff" or random thoughts receive more feedback. You just never know. Write what you want - it's YOUR blog! ;-)

About Last Weekend said...

Yes this was my one of my favourites. I have noticed people do love personal photos and stories. It touches them. But really blogging is all about writing what you want to write. Agree with Blog Fodder, it's in the mixing it up - keep them guessing.