CURSIVE…OR NOT?

I know I said I’d finished but I’m missing the old place and this is kind of relevant to my new project so please indulge me.

Handwriting. What does it mean to you?

Now I’m a girl and a dreamer at that so I have spent a lot of time over the years giving careful consideration to my script. Like so much of my life, it started out with bags of promise and has failed to live up to that ever since. It either slopes resolutely in the direction that I am going as was drummed into me at school or it is squat and misshapen as I try to ape a more adult style. Either way, it’s never going to be remembered as one of the world’s most beautiful hands.

A couple of years ago, I decided to reinvent it. This is not a new idea but one that I’ve played with a lot over the years. (Well, more at high school than anything to be fair.) If I’m honest, I didn’t try awfully hard this time. This isn’t like me so I knew that there had to be something else at play in my lack of enthusiasm.

And now I know what it was. What is the point of changing my handwriting when I type everything?

So, on to the point of this. (You’ve missed my self-indulgent ramblings really. You know you have.)

You may have spotted that I have literary ambitions. I might have mentioned it from time to time. I forget. Anyway, this is all about dreams too. In my dream, I sit, curled in a huge armchair, a mug of steaming coffee balanced on the arm, with Moleskine notebook and fountain pen ready loaded with my purple ink in hand.

And then, in my dream, the words flow from my imagination, through my never-tiring arm and onto the page in tidy but written at speed script. You can just picture it, can’t you? Me too.

However, there are several unavoidable flaws in this tableau. Firstly, why would I write in hand when it’s so much more efficient to type? Secondly, when I have to type it up anyway why wouldn’t I type it up in the first place? And thirdly, I would never be able to read my own handwriting.

But lots of real authors do it that way, not holding with new fangled gadgetry but trusting to pen and ink. It seems to work well for them. But I type much faster and more reliably than I write these days. It may not have always been that way but I am out of the habit of reproducing my thoughts onto paper. My handwriting is awful, my arm tires remarkably quickly and my mind runs away with itself whilst it waits for the rest of me to catch up.

I am about to go on holiday which is, traditionally, when I get a lot of my writing done as my family sleeps. But have I bought myself a new notebook and charged my pen? No. I shall pack the iPad, the wireless keyboard and a couple of spare batteries, dump the whole lot into Dropbox when I’m done and Bob’s your uncle.

Not very dreamy, is it?

One thought on “CURSIVE…OR NOT?

  1. I'm reminded of the grammarly cartoon I saw this week: I haven't got messy hand writing, I have my own font.

    Personally I'm a fan of handwriting for the creative process (alluded to here: http://suzesblither.blogspot.co.uk/2013/08/give-me-seven-years-and-ill-give-you.html.

    Certainly when I'm developing ideas and a first rough draft will be in manuscript. I've moved away from using expensive and beautiful stationery – a biro and a notepad from WHSmith with holes punched so I can file them somewhere.

    That said, I still hanker after a Mont Blanc pen, perhaps reverting the the turquoise ink of my youth.

    Happy writing…

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