I’m not sure what it is about typewriters that I find so appealing. Maybe it’s because I grew up in a pre-computer era, and I learned to type on one.
My mother had a manual typewriter, which she did not allow me to play with; she wanted me to learn how to properly type and not be hampered by the hunt-and-peck method that would be hard to unlearn. (Mom’s post-high school training was at business school; she served for a few years as a secretary, before she started having babies.)
I finally took that typing class when I was in the tenth grade, and by that time, got to learn on an electric typewriter. That may have been the most practical class I ever took, and it ended up being an income-generator when I was a freshman in college and friends paid me to type their papers for them.
By the time I graduated from college, I had been introduced to word processing; it was still pre-Microsoft days yet, but the miracle of the delete button and cut-and-paste techniques seemed miraculous to me, for whom Wite-Out® had previously been a lifesaver.
The typewriter has become for me a symbol of the writer’s life. The tapping of a computer keyboard may not be as distinctive (or disruptive) as the clacking of a typewriter’s keys, and preferable because of that. Maybe if I’d learned to copy my final papers on parchment with a fountain pen, this would be my nostalgic writing instrument of choice. I grew up watching movies and TV shows where reporters and novelists tapped away on their typewriters, generating brilliant articles and stories. That’s what I wanted to do when I grew up. So now I do that on my laptop. 🙂
An artist acquaintance painted a series of typewriters, and this is the only original artwork I have ever purchased. Isn’t it cool?