Sunday, July 21, 2019 12:57

John Emberson


Born in the county of Essex, England, I am a practicing Roman Catholic, married with two sons and three grandsons. The greater part of my working life was spent as a firefighter with the Essex County Fire & Rescue Service. I joined the service in January 1963 with the then Southend on Sea County Borough Fire Brigade where I remained until local government reorganisation in 1974. I retired from the Essex County Fire and Rescue Service in 1984 with the rank of Station Officer.

I began writing many years ago and enjoyed a little success in having some children’s stories published: none of those stories are reproduced here. Nowadays I write mainly for fun, and mostly for adults. Some of my spare time is devoted to producing and publishing a newsletter (The Gathering) for members of the former Southend on Sea County Borough Fire Brigade. You’ll also find here an Ornithology page that shows my Species Life List.

You might be asking why I called this blog ‘The Voice of the Writer’. Simple: In an age when so many budding writers find it impossible to experience the joy of seeing their work in print, there is always the path of Vanity Publishing. But blogs such as this allow the amateur writer to offer their work for scrutiny by a demanding readership without having to go to the expense of funding a book that might not sell.

It can be nothing but regretful to see the standards of written English being eroded; a process that looks set to change permanently the way we communicate with one another. This steady erosion of our native language has come about by the availability of modern methods of communication that encourage poor grammar and spelling, methods that are daily perpetuated by people who should know better; people who one might think of as being well educated and in responsible positions in society. It is sad indeed to hear an English social worker admit that she doesn’t know the meaning of a not uncommon English word; sad to see a passage written by an English school teacher that has no punctuation; sad to see a university graduate who sees nothing wrong in using taboo slang.

It isn’t my intention to set myself up as an example of all that is good in the written word. I have suffered more than enough criticism over the years to be left in no doubt that what I write is sometimes less than perfect.

But I hope you’ll enjoy what you see here and, if you do, take the trouble add a comment.

Mediocribus esse poetis Non homines, non di, non concessere columnae. Not gods, nor men, nor even booksellers have put up with poets being second-rate.                                                                                         Horace 65-8 B.C.  

John Emberson
1 December 2010


4 Responses to “John Emberson”

  1. Todd S. Hyatt says:

    Dear Mr. Emberson: Your background is intriguing: firefighter, writer of stories for children and literature for adults, and doughty defender of the English. I’m glad that I chanced upon your website.

    I share your concern about the erosion of standards for written and spoken English especially among professionals who ought to know better — and whose livelihoods supposedly depend on getting the language right. It’s an embarrassment.

    Alas, I think we swim, or flail, upstream. I choke; I’m drowning in a sea of solecisms.

    Allow me, if you will, to bring to your attention a small matter that one as meticulous as you will almost certainly apreciate: your closing quotation — a dandy — is not, in fact, from Homer but from Horace (Ars Poetica, book 13, line 372, I think).

    I am probably not the first reader of your blog to notice this slip. But, just in case and in particular because I admire the rearguard action that you are fighting, I thought I’d mention it.

    Sincerely yours,

    Todd S. Hyatt
    North Grafton, MA 01536

  2. john emberson says:

    Todd, you’re comments are very welcome as indeed is your observation regarding the author of my quote.

    Memory is a strange thing – I had convinced myself that it was Homer. However, having checked my book of quotations I find you are correct.

    Thank you for pointing out my mistake.

    Regards, John Emberson

  3. ugg ブーツ

    Ive to say, I dont know if its the clashing colors or the dangerous grammar, however this weblog is hideous! I mean, I dont need to sound like a know-it-all or something, but might you could have possibly put a little bit more effort into this subject.…

    • john emberson says:

      To be honest, Ugg, I find your grammar and spelling so difficult and laboured that it’s almost impossible to understand exactly what you’re trying to say.