The Hand-Written Word – Execupundit

A fellow fountain-pen fan, discusses the difference between the tactile, deliberate crafting of a hand-written word and the electronic / mechanical act of tapping a keyboard.

Is it because we learn to write at such an early age (and never learn to type properly) that the mind-to-pen-to-paper connection is more visceral?  In Nicholas Carr’s book The Shallows, he describes Nietzsche’s struggle with the new-fangled typewriter and its impact on his writing.

I confess I do both.  The sheer efficiency of manipulating text in Word wins out when I know what I’m doing.  For note-taking, scribbling, mind-wandering and pondering, the fountain pen wins out.  My current weapons of choice are two 1980s Waterman Gentlemans.  Crafted in brass, they have a pleasing weight in the hand without the ostentatious bulge of many contemporary pens.  You can usually pick them up for between £50 and £100 on eBay.



About Andrew Munro

An independent business consultant, interim manager and writer, Andrew operates through his company, Burning Pine Ltd (
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