Philip Hensher: Why handwriting matters | Books | The Observer

Philip Hensher: Why handwriting matters | Books | The Observer.

The Guardian is having a purple patch this weekend! Following on from Howard Jacobson’s article on Saturday (briefly blogged about here) is another interesting article about handwriting and the process of writing by hand.

I am increasingly aware of how bad my handwriting has become in recent years as I rarely have to write more than a shopping list or a few vague words in birthday cards despite me writing more than I have for a while here on the blog. I have also noticed that my spelling and ability to construct a coherent sentence straight-off have deteriorated due to the ability to make traceless alterations as I type.

I would also agree that receiving something handwritten has more charm than a typed letter, and I can place the last time I received a letter from an acquaintance (spring 2011 while lodging at Emma’s) such is the rarity these days.

As a result, I have resolved to write more, by hand. Keep a notebook (as suggested by Mr. Hensher) and jot things down – ideas, to-do lists, information about my day; not a formal diary as such, but more a mental scrapbook to be filled, edited, read and recycled once full – write letters as well as emails, send more postcards when away for a few days. Hopefully, it will help my handwriting improve and evolve as well as polishing my ability to communicate.


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