Wordy Wednesday: Hobgoblin

As authors, editors, marketers, and publishers, words breathe life into our passions. They combine to create the books that have emerged as important members of our extended families. (It’s getting thick in here, isn’t it?) Well, to put it mildly, we love words. Better yet, we adore them, fawn over them, get a kick out of them. Need I go on?  However, sometimes they don’t pool together as they should or they cause us no end of pain and suffering when we can’t seem to find enough of them. It can become quite the conundrum.

That being said, let’s focus on the positives, shall we?  Each Wednesday, we shall endeavor to pontificate on the beautifulness of a specific word, a favorite word, a special word, a global word or, well, um, hmmm, any word. This should be fun, don’t ya think?!

To kick off the first Little Lamb Books Wordy Wednesday, here’s a favorite.

hobgoblin
[hob-gob-lin]
(n.)
Definition: a mischievous goblin; a bogeyman; to be a superstitious fear.

I first came across this word in a quote from a play I did in middle school. The scriptwriter, a parent, included it in my character’s lines, and at the ripe old age of 13, I couldn’t have told you entirely what it meant, although I knew it had a negative connotation. I barely recall doing the read-through of the script and getting the gist of the quote just so I could say my lines with emotion and energy. To be truthful, at the time I felt these words were so the opposite of what I felt because I really hated change as a kid and teen. I constantly asked my mom in my moments of despair, “Why does everything have to change?” Teenage angst at it’s finest, y’all!

Do you know the original quote?


“Consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

The scriptwriter changed the original quote for better reading and performance from a stage (and to make it easier for this young actress to remember). The original quote says, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines.” I never knew the real quote or its length until I was out of college, but I give credit to the scriptwriter because she helped remind me as a young student to think about how it’s hard to go through life changes, but it’s necessary for our futures to have a changing life.

To this day, it’s still one of my favorite quotes.