I’ve been working on this one consistently, although I’ve been absent from 43T. I managed to make it through spring semester without one student complaint about illegible commments. I call that success. And I feel my handwriting is more distinctive, as well. I’ll continue to work on this goal, refining my handwriting, but I’m happy with what I’ve accomplished.
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dkp has written 4 entries about this goal
I’ve been giving lots of people handwritten feedback recently on their manuscripts, proposals, whatnot. It’s not at all unusual for someone to ask me to decipher my scrawls. Embarassingly, there are times when I can’t. This hasn’t happened in a while. Either folks are impressed by the bolk lines of my fountain pen, they’ve given up trying to read my messages, or I’m actually improving.
Okay, I’m not quite sure I’ve improved my handwriting that much, but I have done two things that are sure to have an effect, eventually. 1) I’m making a conscious effort to slow down when I write and not to rush through my notes. 2) I’m also making sure I write something by hand every day, even if it’s only a postcard or a to-do list; with those forms of writing I feel somewhat pressured to be legible, which will hopefully become a habit for me.
I’ve always wanted distinctive rather than good handwriting, although I do appreciate the idea of legibility. One of my best friends from high school had this wonderfully elaborate handwriting, almost like calligraphy. And in college, I adored one of my professors in part because of his bold, sweeping comments on my papers—not the comments themselves, but his style. His penmenship let me know he had confidence in his assessment and in his being. His style made me want my handwriting to reflect, maybe even create, a vivid persona.
Alas, my handwriting has not improved over the years. Thanks to how much time I spend on my computer, it’s even deteriorated. I have to admit, sometimes when I reread my paper journals, I’m not quite sure what I’ve written. And worse, my handwriting seems pretty nondescript. I’ve never been the type of person to practice my handwriting-
even in junior high, when all the other girls were busy practicing their Mrs. signatures-so I’ve been at a loss as how to improve.
Then I came up with another entry here which I think will help. Write a daily postcard. It’s perfect—a short form, to someone I care about. Because it’s so brief, content isn’t that stressed. Legibility is, so I think postcards will help with that aspect at the very least. The postcards will also help me assess test how much content is a reflection of style. The next questions I need to answer are “What kind of impression do I want to send with my handwriting?” and “What flourishes will convey this?”