Inside a wooden shack installed at North 12th Street and Driggs Avenue in Williamsburg’s McCarren Park, anyone can sit down at a typewriter and contribute to a collaborative poem unfolding over a 100-foot paper scroll. “The Typewriter Project: The Subconscious of the City,” presented by the Poetry Society of New York in partnership with the Parks Department, is a nomadic experiment in engaging the public with writing.
I’m slacking a bit this week. But, this is pretty and I did want to post it somewhere before the holidays.
Once I got the idea in my head I had to keep looking until I found at least one Christmas typewriter to hang on the tree.
Tuesday, June 23, the anniversary date of the U.S. patent filed by Christopher Latham Sholes and company for an “Improvement in type-writing machines” which is a good enough reason to throw a type-party at the midpoint of the year.
Ideas can be recycled. Your emotions or interests can produce an idea for a story. Ideas are anywhere and can be used over again. Be alert to your environment, your interests, and your emotions. Somewhere an idea will spark your imagination.
Also using different viewpoints can be an idea for another story. Any idea can be written more than once by changing something in the story so that it is given a fresh approach. For example. A story could be told by the detective, and then recycled and told again by the villain. You’ll be reading a story later on that is told by the villain.
I’ve heard about recycling ideas in many forms of thought. Some people say there really is nothing new, it’s all just rewritten from a long forgotten original. These people also follow along with the “there’s nothing new under the sun” theory.
I don’t quite agree with that. New things are coming along. It really does depend on how you look at it all. You see what you are looking for. You could say computers are noting new, just a fancier typewriter. Or you could think of them as a whole new culture, a new science, a new business and career section.
A lot of ideas are borrowed and copies and revamped. There are only 26 letters in the alphabet, there’s bound to be some repetition. But, how many different words are there? That’s how the writer has to make things different. Change the words around. Only not quite that simple. It’s not enough to just change a few names and hope no one will notice you really didn’t add anything new.
Give your old story new life with a unique flip, a unique character. If you think about it, you can find a new way to tell an old story.
You have to decide for yourself about the “anything new under the sun” thing. Is there? What would you write about the idea of there being nothing really and truly new?
The Typosphere – A term for bloggers who collect, use, and otherwise obsess over typewriters and other “obsolete” technologies, including, but not limited to, handwriting, pens and ink, paper mail and mail art, knitting and fibre arts, film photography, chip-less combustion engines, and related ephemera.
Flickr: Anablogger Archives – “A repository of film photographs, doodles and drawings, pages hand- and type-written that appear on blogs.”
NaNoWriMo’s Typewriter Brigade – “This group is an online meeting place for members of the NaNoWriMo “Typewriter Brigade”. Also welcome are: those who are not yet members but are feeling that sudden, unexpected desire to pound out 50,000 words on an old-school typing machine, as well as those offering moral support, and gawkers of all stripes”.
Flickr: Typewritten – Post anything created on a typewriter.
Flickr: The Dead Technology Society
Flickr: Lost to Progress
Flickr: Functional Antiquated Living
Flickr: TypeSwap – “a forum for typewriter users, collectors, and businesses to buy, sell, trade, or pass along typewriters, parts, tools, manuals, and other typewriter-related materials and information”.
Flickr: Writing Machines – “Typewriters, printing presses and movable type – anything to do with the mechanical reproduction or creation of the written word”.
Flickr: Typewriter Ribbon Tin Menagerie
This month I pick Jason as the Twitter Profile of the Month. I like the unassuming, understated and the simply stated. I do have a thing for ordinary guys. I even like good guys.
“Suddenly tempted to paste my typewriter with band stickers, like the guitar case of some longhair rock-and-roller type”. – Jason Crock
Join the Typewriter Brigade if you work on a typewriter instead of a computer or word processor for NaNoWriMo.
I miss writing with a pen. I miss penmanship too. My penmanship has suffered from lack of use. However, my keyboarding skills are pretty fast and accurate – as long as I am typing my own words right out of my head.
I still like to look at pens. I seldom fail to go down the office supplies aisle in stores. There are so many nice pens, some with thick nibs, some thin. Some with the perfect black ink. Now there are gel pens with multi colour inks, unlimited ranges of colours. Then there are the old style fountain pens, like a calligraphy pen used to write invitations in a fancy script.
I still remember my favourite pen from school days. I still have an assortment of pens on my desk, close at hand. I seldom use them and that is kind of sad. Yes, I’m a bit of a history geek. Sort of a traditionalist in the leave no man behind way. But, that doesn’t mean I am going to go back to writing long hand. It just means I feel the loss of the pen in my hand, the writing flowing from my pen in cursive style.
One thing I do not miss is the old typewriter. Word processing on the computer is far too good for me to want to return to the old manual typewriter.
Do you ever miss writing with pen and ink? Do you also have a growing collection of pens, seldom used?