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Little Time To Practice, On Computers All Day, And Just Starting To Question If I Can Do It..



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I had an older post on here but things have changed some and I'm getting discouraged.

 

I'm 30 years old and in college to get my Associates Degree in Network Administration in the IT field. So I work on computers all day. I rarely get to write by hand and when I do Its been so long since I wrote in cursive that I just fall back to print for note taking or anything because it takes me too long to write legibly in cursive. The only time I get to write in cursive is when I'm at home studying or writing my new found Pen Pals from these forums.

 

I'm trying to practice Palmer method of cursive using the books online but I am having a really really hard time finding time to devote to them when I am constantly studying, and doing homework, and working, etc.

 

Also the grip that the Palmer method shows really hurts my wrist and is really uncomfortable. Its really hard for me to get my wrist to lay flat like that and off the table, it feels more natural for my wrist to be rotated some. And With my wrist laying so flat I can't see what the heck I'm writing the way I would have to hold the pen.. Is your wrist really supposed to be so flat like in the Palmer book's pictures?

 

Also it seems like you really need to have a specific posture and desk area to write like this.. Which makes me wonder if this is even something that I will ever even be able to use in school with awkward desk areas, etc its just not set up to allow for the space I need to write using the Palmer method.. Am I wasting my time here....

 

I mean my cursive is legible but I don't just want it to be able to be read, I want it to be enjoyed.

 

Is anyone else having these issues that have or are currently trying to practice using the Palmer books?

 

THIS IS NOT MY VIDEO but I found it and it is asking some of the same questions I am about the Palmer grip.. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-HUZLLwvOpQ

 

The writing posture really concerns me also because I don't know if its going to be feasible to always get a proper posture out in the real world.. I don't want to only be able to write well when I have the perfect desk setup at home and then when I go to school or somewhere that doesn't have a good desk setup I can't write properly.

 

I really appreciate any advice, Thanks

Jeff

 

The first step toward change is awareness. The second step is acceptance.

Nathaniel Branden

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The grip in the Palmer and other instruction books presume that you will flex the nib at some point, I think. I don't bother with that grip. Just use the normal tripod grip, and you will be fine. Just don't try to flex the nib.

 

You do what you can with whatever you have. But when you are learning, try to have a reasonably good environment. I used the kitchen table with a steno chair. Once you learn it, you will be able to figure out how to jury rig in different environments. The hardest is if you are LH and the classroom has those funky swing up half size writing surfaces that are made for RH only.

 

As for practice, try to set aside 30 minutes a day, every day. You should be able to find 30 minutes in your schedule.

Edited by ac12

San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

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The grip in the Palmer and other instruction books presume that you will flex the nib at some point, I think. I don't bother with that grip. Just use the normal tripod grip, and you will be fine. Just don't try to flex the nib.

 

You do what you can with whatever you have. But when you are learning, try to have a reasonably good environment. I used the kitchen table with a steno chair. Once you learn it, you will be able to figure out how to jury rig in different environments. The hardest is if you are LH and the classroom has those funky swing up half size writing surfaces that are made for RH only.

 

As for practice, try to set aside 30 minutes a day, every day. You should be able to find 30 minutes in your schedule.

 

Yah about 4 months ago I when I went back to school I started noticing my print was pretty bad from not writing much anymore so I started looking into how to get better handwriting. I found out that the grip I had used my whole life was horrible and was the cause of my wrist hurting when writing. So I adopted the standard tripod grip and learned it and got used to it and my wrist pain went away. Then I started researching fountain pens and eventually bought my first one and thats when I started trying to write in cursive again and quickly figured out that after having not used it for 12 years I forgot how lol. So recently I've been trying to get some help from the Palmer books but the grip shown in the book just really hurts my wrist and I have to hold the pen in what feels like a very awkward manner.

 

If I can get away with using the normal tripod grip that would be great. I think with some practice I can get the whole arm movement part of Palmer down but I've been wrestling with the grip they show and its been turning me off from wanting to practice. I can probably get 30 mins in each day if I stay on top of my work, I didn't realize just how much of my time school would require when I went back. I love being back in school but Its very hard to find time for hobbies now thats for sure.

 

Thanks for the tips!

The first step toward change is awareness. The second step is acceptance.

Nathaniel Branden

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I think one reason for that particular grip is that when you do the downstroke, it lines up the axis of the nib/pen with the downstroke. In this way, it is a clean downward pull. With the tripod grip, the downstroke is actually a diagonal downstroke, relative to the axis of the nib/pen. This is OK for a fountain pen with a tip, but not so good for a pointed dip pen nib without a tip. This is one reason for the use of oblique dip pen holders. So we can use the tripod grip, yet have the dip pen nib in line with the downstroke. Bottom line, unless you are using a straight dip pen holder and a dip pen, forget the grip in the Palmer instructions, and just use a tripod grip.

Edited by ac12

San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

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Keep in there, continue to practice when you can. And don't worry about it, after all, it's supposed to be fun.

 

Enjoy,

Yours,
Randal

From a person's actions, we may infer attitudes, beliefs, --- and values. We do not know these characteristics outright. The human dichotomies of trust and distrust, honor and duplicity, love and hate --- all depend on internal states we cannot directly experience. Isn't this what adds zest to our life?

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I use the "Classic Tripod Grip" and when I started improving my handwriting, it turned out to be a long process, with quite some frustration and things that I needed to un-learn.

 

I found this response in the excellent Classic Tripod Grip thread very helpful in diagnosing my own grip.

 

For me, the most important issues were grip (see above), posture and motion. I tended to anchor my wrist and just use my fingers to write. That seemed to offer the greatest amount of control over the nib, and works well for small individual letters, but severely limits the range of motion and prevents a nice flowing hand.

 

It really took me some time to relax while trying to produce nice writing. Palmer drills are useful, as is forgetting about control and focus on flow during the first stages.

 

Here's an old thread that shows some of my attempts: Fun with Handwriting Practice.

journaling / tinkering with pens / sailing / photography / software development

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I use the "Classic Tripod Grip" and when I started improving my handwriting, it turned out to be a long process, with quite some frustration and things that I needed to un-learn.

 

I found this response in the excellent Classic Tripod Grip thread very helpful in diagnosing my own grip.

 

For me, the most important issues were grip (see above), posture and motion. I tended to anchor my wrist and just use my fingers to write. That seemed to offer the greatest amount of control over the nib, and works well for small individual letters, but severely limits the range of motion and prevents a nice flowing hand.

 

It really took me some time to relax while trying to produce nice writing. Palmer drills are useful, as is forgetting about control and focus on flow during the first stages.

 

Here's an old thread that shows some of my attempts: Fun with Handwriting Practice.

 

 

Anchoring your hand indeed limits the range of motion of your hand/fingers.

What I found out after relearning to write (and converting from finger to arm writing) is that the small finger muscles get tired and cramp after a bit, the larger arm and hand muscles have more endurance, for longer writing sessions.

Warning: Converting from finger to arm writing will take dedication and time. At first it was UGLY !!! It took me 3 months of constant daily practice before I could write with my arm without constantly checking to see that my arm was moving vs. my fingers. And another several months before my handwriting looked decent.

San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

www.SFPenShow.com

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Anchoring your hand indeed limits the range of motion of your hand/fingers.

What I found out after relearning to write (and converting from finger to arm writing) is that the small finger muscles get tired and cramp after a bit, the larger arm and hand muscles have more endurance, for longer writing sessions.

Warning: Converting from finger to arm writing will take dedication and time. At first it was UGLY !!! It took me 3 months of constant daily practice before I could write with my arm without constantly checking to see that my arm was moving vs. my fingers. And another several months before my handwriting looked decent.

 

I agree! At first, writing practice can be quite frustrating.

 

Just keep at it, and make sure to read the instructions in the exercise books. I think it was the Palmer method which put much more emphasis on speed than I had expected. While you might be tempted to do the drills very carefully, it seems best to do them at a brisk pace right from the start. Go light, swift.

 

I really liked Edward C. Mill's Modern Business Penmanship and later did a few bits and pieces from A.N. Palmer. (The Palmer link is to a PDF of the budget version, because I couldn't find the full version anymore.)

 

Edit: the Mills book is also available in PDF from archive.org.

Edited by pmhudepo

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I think Palmer was meant for fast business writing, so emphasising speed makes sense.

 

As for writing speed, I think each person has their own best speed, and they have to find it themselves.

For me is is rather slow, to be nice as I want it to look. More casual/elegant writing than fast business writing.

Too slow and I get shaky, because I am drawing the letters rather than writing with strokes.

Too fast and I get sloppy because I am pushing my speed beyond my ability to write as I would like to.

 

For me to write faster, I actually change my hand a bit, to be less "nice" and more simple cursive.

Even faster and I switch to block printing, as I have a better chance of reading my handwriting when printing than script/cursive.

Even faster and I go into a very difficult to read cursive, because I am now beyond my capable writing speed.

Edited by ac12

San Francisco Pen Show - August 28-30, 2020 - Redwood City, California

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I hate to mention the elephant in the room, but...

Is the Palmer method really the best method for you? There are many other hands out there, and as many ways of teaching them. I don't know what the hand I was taught is called. But it wasn't Palmer, (or spencerian copperplate) it might be a simplified Cursive Italic, or a descendant of Vere Foster Civil Service script.

 

http://www.teachhandwriting.co.uk has some useful tutorials and sample sheets for something like what I was taught and does include several letter variations so you can use ones that work better for you.

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I hate to mention the elephant in the room, but...

Is the Palmer method really the best method for you? There are many other hands out there, and as many ways of teaching them. I don't know what the hand I was taught is called. But it wasn't Palmer, (or spencerian copperplate) it might be a simplified Cursive Italic, or a descendant of Vere Foster Civil Service script.

 

http://www.teachhandwriting.co.uk has some useful tutorials and sample sheets for something like what I was taught and does include several letter variations so you can use ones that work better for you.

 

I agree about Palmer. It seems to me that Palmer-like cursive is highly valued around here, but there are interesting alternatives available. In my opinion, all it takes to improve one's handwriting is to keep the overall style as is, but work on consistency in letter forms and spacing.

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