Poetry Revision: Does the Choice of Typeface Inspire Different Kinds of Writing?

I worked on a poem earlier tonight. I wasn’t at all happy with it; but, in keeping with the honest purpose of my blog–exposing the imperfections of the writing process–I posted it anyway. I returned to it later, making revisions with a pencil. I then retyped it with my chocolate Erika 5, which has an italic typeface. This Erika is the prize of my portable collection. The discoloration in the keys perfectly complements the paint and decals.

I made more changes to the poem along the way. I rarely use italic or script typefaces, but they do create a writing mood and an aesthetic–for small notes, for poetry, perhaps for a longer letter. It is interesting to speculate whether typeface-selection influences the writing process.

7 Comments Add yours

  1. Bill M says:

    I don’t know much about poetry. I do know when I grab one of my typewriters with a typeface I really like I do tend to write more. Whether I write a letter or just type my daily journal I find that the letter is longer, the journal entry more detailed and longer, and many times I just type several pages of thoughts. One of my favorite typefaces is Hermes Epoca. I have a Brother JP-3 with a nearly identical typeface. That machine is presently on my workbench for some repairs to make it fully functional. Even though there are some problems with it I found myself not just test typing on it yesterday, I typed 3 pages of thoughts and such enjoying each word that was printed with the clean typeface. Had it been a plain typeface like the H3k I just finished had; I’d have typed some test typing — maybe a paragraph — and that would be all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mcfeats says:

      I hadn’t thought about length. I guess I simply type longer on machines that work better—or on machines that better suit my ergonomic needs. My question could be bogus. There are so many factors.

      I wish I better knew the name of typefaces. I feel as though everyone has a secret manual somewhere. I am curious why this Erika has such an odd “C.”


      1. Bill M says:

        I have an Erika almost like yours except mine does not work and looks like it is gold leaf paint. Erika used Ransmayer Rodrian type slugs. There should be an octagon with an R in it or AR on one or more of your slugs if you look at them under magnification. George Sommeregger had the AR catalog on his blog</a

        Liked by 1 person

      2. mcfeats says:

        Thank you! So, the original slugs have a “2” without letters next to them. My “c” reads “5 AR,” which, if, I’m reading the catalog correctly, is “5 Ro” (Rodrian company). Someone must have replaced the “c.” The slugs marked with “2” are from a different company, I guess.


      3. Bill M says:

        Link works, but somehow I got the termination code in with the text. I get in too much of a hurry.


  2. cloudytype says:

    The italic typeface there feels more intimate. I can’t help noticing the C in upper case though and it tripped me slightly in first reading. But that’s ok because I always read poems through a few times. Perhaps the upper case C is for Character.
    Have you read AS Byatt’s Ragnarok? This poem reminded me of that book

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mcfeats says:

      I have not read it. The book sounds great. One more for my reading list, which is looking pretty dusty these days. The typewriter has an actual upper case “c.” I wonder if this was a replacement slug.

      Liked by 1 person

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