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I read a great post the other day on Freshly Pressed– The Delight of Hand Writing.

The article reminded me what I had forgotten– that I miss writing with a pen. I used to journal all the time with pen and paper. Eventually I moved to journaling on my laptop.

When I was a teenager, my BFF moved five hours away and email didn’t exist. We corresponded a lot.  I still have some of those letters. If I was feeling particularly ritualistic and grand, I would write letters on parchment paper by candlelight using my feather quill pen. (No, this was not a hundred years ago, and I am not a vampire).

Here was the pen.

Sure it’s cool to look at, but this quill pen had a weak nib so the ink flow was not consistent. But it gave off a cool scratching sound when you wrote.

Ah, the good old days.

All that nostalgia nudged me into buying a new fountain pain.  I’ve never had one before. I don’t really count calligraphy pens because I only used them to address envelopes and not for regular writing.  This was going to be my reward for a grueling day of work filled with lots of frantic emails, phone calls and me wanting to strangle someone.  But when I held my slick new pen, I buried all that craziness in the corner of my mind. I fully intended to forget it (until the next day) in favor trying out this new writing instrument.

My pen came with pre-filled cartridges which I almost used, but I decided against it.  The heavy glass bottle filled with rich black ink was calling my name.  I unstoppered the lid and peered in.  The blackness looked back at me.  It was dark and dense, like a black hole.

In the quiet of my room, I wrote the first draft of this post.  The light from the corner lamp glinted off the shiny, new nib.  I noticed a difference.  I was not hunched over my laptop.  Instead, I stretched out on my side with my notebook next to me.  With my right hand perched at the top of the page, I began to write.  My muscles relaxed into the old pose.  I used to do all of my writing this way.

Then my writing hand wanted to show off.  Curlicues, squiggles and strong lines transformed the page.  I even practiced my signature.

Literary Tiger’s signature.  No forging my name on checks now.

I can be particular about pens. For every day use, like jotting notes on Post-Its,  I’m a fan of the RSVP Pentel ballpoint pen.

One step up from the humble RSVP is my canary yellow (with black trim) roller ball pen.  See my picture below.  Just think of Bumblebee transforming into a pen instead of a Camaro.

Other pens I’ve used.  The really pretty ones farther back don’t write that well, and it’s hard to get a good grip when there’s glitter and stuff clinging to your fingers.  The pewter pen is lovely but gets heavy to hold.

Say It Ain’t So!

The Scream by Edvard Munch (Image courtesy of Wikipedia)

This is how I felt when I read that some schools are eliminating the teaching of cursive from their curriculum.

Don’t let gorgeous handwriting be a lost art. Pick up your pens and write!

What do you like to write with? Do you prefer to type away or put pen to paper as part of your writing ritual?