Tuesday, August 30, 2011


What's the big deal about writing things down? Typing is faster! Neater! With typing, you can get the words out almost as quickly as they come to mind. Imagine what "Shakespeare" could have done with a computer!

Yet, a certain something missing: Unless you know the author, you won't always be able to understand the tone in which something is typed. Sometimes when you have heard the author you can still misinterpret their meaning or project a tone of your own invention onto their words. It's happened to me, and recently too.

There is magic in a page that is handwritten. Your tone can be read in the stroke of the pen. A whole science has risen up around the art of writing, called graphology. Curiously, Leo Martello was a graphologist and wrote books and lectured on the subject. It's called a "pseudoscience" by some, which I don't understand, because it has been and continues to be used to identify people legally. Funny how most things which require the art of interpretation are called "pseudoscience."

Depending on your personality or mood, or thoughts of the moment, your handwriting changes. I know that when I'm in a rush my penship is particularly illegible. It looks rushed. Here is a page which defines the different traits of penship. It has examples, and really involved explanations and a few profiles too. But I digress...

You are putting yourself, your energy, into the words. It takes time and thought and a deliberate act of committing something to the page. Here, I just delete typos or a turn of phrase I don't like. When writing, you simply take more care in what you say and how you say it. There is a reason magical rites, if written, are copied by hand. It's an investment of energy, another literal passing of the torch between student and teacher.

I will endeavor to write by hand much more often. My penship is awful when I don't stay in practice!

I'm going to leave off here tonight with a promise to explore automatic writing, history, practice and techniques some time soon!

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