Experimentation Is Where the Fun Is At!

    My new shipment from The Goulet Pen Company makes it feel like Christmas!

    Six pocket notebooks and sixteen different colorful ink swatches arranged on a light wooden desk

    I ordered their notebook sampler and got a random ink sample set for free.

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    An Analog Blog Post

    A journal and Lamy Safari fountain pen on a dark stained wood table

    The following was transcribed from the pictured journal entry. I used Google Lens and a LOT of editing.

    It has been easy to not make time to write recently. “Busyness” is the main culprit, but I’ve also been spending time with its less boisterous sibling, distraction. And so here I find myself, back at the roots of my writing practice. The journal. I’ve missed the empty page. The empty screen is nice too, in my writing software of choice, but I can’t help feeling the weight of the myriad windows/apps/messages vying for my attention. So I’ve returned to my empty page. It welcomes my attention and thought, but does not compete for them. It is an escape in plain sight.

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    Adding Space

    I’ve never considered my handwriting to be great, but I’ve been doing a lot more writing by hand recently so I resolved to make an effort to write more legibly.

    The first thing I tried was to add more space between each character and each word, and that alone made a huge difference! Actually, it’s enough of an improvement that I’m content with my handwriting for now and won’t be trying any more improvements for a while. Keeping some level of messiness feels necessary to maintain the soul of my style.

    Focusing on pushing my hand out to the right to separate each character has made my writing feel like it flows a lot better. I think before I was overly focused on cramming each word tightly together so I could maximize the space on each page. In fact, since making this change, part of me still feels guilty for taking up more space on the page with each word. Somehow it feels wasteful, and I’m surprised I could feel guilty about something so trivial. I try to remind myself that whitespace has value too. It brings separation, clarity. It lays the canvas from which each character or word is defined. Having too much ink smushed together muddles everything up. Each stroke is only as good as the accompanying whitespace that makes it a stroke at all.

    As I think about whitespace in a literal sense and how it has improved my writing, it makes me wonder about whitespace in a figurative sense. Are there areas in my life where I am trying too hard to cram “stuff” together, and a little whitespace might bring separation and clarity? What does whitespace even mean, in that sense?