National Handwriting Day!
The History of National Handwriting Day
The Writing Instrument Manufacturers Association (WIMA) started National Handwriting Day back in 1977. This writer's holiday occurs every January 23rd, and its date coincides with John Hancock's birthday. Hancock was the first to sign the Declaration of Independence.
The Purpose of National Handwriting Day
The purpose of this holiday is near and dear to me. Handwriting and journal writing, in particular, is a much-overlooked art form. Whether for story writing, idea generation, or poetry writing, placing a pen or pencil to paper is a simple and most natural process to get ideas from your mind onto paper. When applying pen directly to paper, your thoughts flow quicker and more naturally. This day is a celebration of this often forgotten process.
Ways You Can Celebrate
There are countless ways to celebrate National Handwriting Day. Here are a few suggestions that I hope will inspire you.
Practice and Improve your handwriting
Handwriting doesn't have to mean cursive, but this is the ideal opportunity to practice your cursive skills. Handwriting has a rich history. While the origin of handwriting as we know it, is attributed to the Romans, more recently there has been an evolution in cursive styles. It is an interesting read, and according to Wikipedia, there have been four popular cursive styles in the last couple of hundred years:
- Spencerian Script (1850 - 1925)
- Palmer Method (1888 - Late 1950's)
- Zaner-Bloser (1888 - 1978)
- D'Nealian manuscript form (1978 - present)
Write in your journal
Writing in your journal is the best method of celebrating National Handwriting Day.
You can practice free-writing, idea generation, or goal setting (and many more as discussed in The Top 10 Uses For A Journal). Each of these ideas, as well as any other journal writing activities, are excellent ways to practice handwriting and honoring National Handwriting Day.
Write a love letter
Handwriting a love letter is another lost art. There is nothing that conveys the emotion and sincerity of love as a well-thought-out and beautiful handwritten letter — what a way to celebrate.
Write a story
Well, after all, we are all story writers. Writing a story is the purest form of handwriting in a journal. Whether it is from a story writing prompt, or straight out of your imagination, story writing is an excellent method of celebrating this day.
What I'm Doing To Celebrate
I am currently reading the book The Golden Thread: The Story of Writing by Ewan Clayton
I am enjoying this book because it discussed the history of writing up to the current "era of unprecedented change to the tools and technologies of written communication".
I like reading about the history of societies. There are many ways to follow societal changes through time, and written language is the timeline that Ewan Clayton chooses in The Golden Thread: The Story of Writing.
Happy National Handwriting Day,
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