Tuesday, 31 May 2016

For the love of words

Ticking away at a typewriter and hearing the ding of the bell before hitting the return lever are some of my favourite sounds in the entire world. It's a type of satisfaction that you don't get while typing on a laptop or computer, and it reminds you of how good it feels to just sit and be removed from technology. I never thought I'd be this fond of typewriters, but the spare moments I've spent scrolling through Trademe and visiting local op-shops have proven that this fondness is growing on me a little bit too much. It is because of these spare moments and love for words that I've found myself with three of my own vintage pieces - a Smith Corona Corsair, Olympia Traveller de Luxe S, and most recently, an Olivetti Lettera 32.

I used to keep these babies proudly displayed in my room - on my desk and cabinet - before deciding to keep them in their cases to keep them beautifully pristine.  Now, only my most recent typewriter is displayed on my desk, with the others kept in their cases and brought out for maintenance and story-writing.

My most recent (and current favourite) purchase is my Olivetti Lettera 32, which I bought from Trademe and picked up in Auckland. The seller told me that it belonged to her grandfather and was so relieved when I told her I'd be using it for writing instead of keeping it as a prop. A popular typewriter amongst enthusiasts and successful writers, the Olivetti Lettera is a beautiful machine. This is particularly evident in the Olivetti that I bought since it was so nicely taken care of. I love the muted teal colour and how it looks so robust, as if it's just waiting for a manuscript to be written on it. A downside that I've noticed so far? There have been times where I'm on a typing roll and have missed the ding of the bell! I love the sharp reminder of the bell and constantly wish it was much louder!

This was my post-exam gift to myself and it felt incredible to win the auction for this particular typewriter. I had been looking for a great quality Olivetti Lettera 32 for more than a semester after losing out on multiple auctions so I'm so happy to call this baby my own.

I've created quite a ritual for myself when it comes to typing: put away my electronics, brew a cup of tea (but apparently in these photos a cup of water), take my watch off, put on some hand cream, pile a stack of clean papers next to me, open up my bullet journal, and... well.... type. Doing this has become a hobby and a replacement for writing in my diary!

I love having my bullet journal next to me since I can review my to-do lists and priorities for the day. My next writing goal is to create a letter to myself and open it up in five years' time, and I have a whole bunch of other crazy ideas on my list.

Fun fact: "typewriter" is the longest word you can type using only the top row on a qwerty keyboard!

My Moleskine journal, two of my Frank Stationery notebooks and my yellow Lamy Safari that's currently inked up with J Herbin Rouille d'ancre. 

A sample of the typebar output from my Olivetti - with a fresh ribbon!

Olivetti without its top cover - from here you can see the ribbon and typebars (which admittedly needs a bit of a clean).