Friday, August 21, 2009

A Worthy Pursuit

I've had a friend on my mind for weeks, someone who moved out of state a couple of years back. I'm glad I had only a snail mail address for her, because it gave me an opportunity to write a "real" letter and try out my new fountain pen (pictured).

Julie, my Twitter friend, has inspired me to try my hand- literally! at writing with a fountain pen. I remember writing birth announcements with a fountain pen, some 15+ years ago, with not-very-satisfactory results. Blotting, spotting, and blobs were the result. I am sure the fact that I had a cheap fountain pen contributed to that problem.

I still cannot afford a really nice fountain pen, but on a whim I picked up this Pilot Plumix at Target. The pen is lightweight and the angular barrel feels nice in my hand. It has a blue ink cartridge and a fine nib. The cost was about $6.00 and my test drive tells me it's much improved over my last experience!

There's something satisfying about hearing the gentle scratching sound of a fountain pen. It's fun, too, to add a few flourishes to the gentle art of writing.

Some might say handwriting is a lost art, but I don't think so. My Mom has the world's BEST handwriting, and my own children carry on the tradition by taking pride in their handwriting. Three of my children have used the excellent Getty-Dubay Italic handwriting system and their manuscripts look so much alike that I can hardly tell them apart! My other child has chosen to do a more traditional form of cursive because she likes the curlicues and rounded shape.

I used to be ashamed of my handwriting, but at the time I was teaching my kids to write I picked up an adult handwriting workbook, also by Getty-Dubay, called Write Now. It took me several months and some concentrated effort, but I radically changed my handwriting. I've deviated from the italic system a bit by adding my own "extras" and borrowing the best from what I have admired in others. And that is as it should be~ there is nothing more personal than the style of your handwriting.

What are your thoughts on handwriting? Do you consider it a worthy pursuit?

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