The Devil’s Details: F-ing Handwriting

It’s so easy these days to create legible writing using a computer keyboard that it’s easy to let legible handwriting fall by the wayside. I have become such a typist that I can’t actually remember how to write in cursive:

I haven't written in cursive since the fourth grade.

I haven’t written in cursive since the fourth grade.

I did need to write by hand of course throughout school, and when push came to shove I found I could print faster than I could write (cursive). It’s still not anything I’m terribly proud of, but at least I can (mostly) keep it in a straight line:

"This is an example of my handwriting at its neatest." For those who still can't read it.

“This is an example of my handwriting at its neatest.” For those who still can’t read it.

My history exams came out looking a bit like that bottom line. There was a kid in that class who could write ten pages in the time I wrote two…he got an A.

Now Little Satis has been having quite some difficulty forming letters, and his handwriting is difficult to read at its best. If he’s patient and takes his time he can actually write quite well, but he’s eight. The odd thing is how he has learned (or taught himself) to write:

Left: Standard writing direction. Right: Little Satis' writing direction.

Left: Standard writing direction. Right: Little Satis’ writing direction.

Rather than starting at the top, he starts every letter at the bottom, and traces it up from there. This particularly causes problems with descenders, since they too start on the line, and not below it:

"Qountem and the Apocalypse Theif", for those who are struggling.

“Qountem and the Apocalypse Theif”, for those who are struggling. Don’t ask.

However, although his handwriting is in dire need of attention, check out the F:

What a lovely F!

What a lovely F!

Isn’t it pretty? How did that come out of…well, that?

7 thoughts on “The Devil’s Details: F-ing Handwriting

  1. Now you remind me of how I love typing and because of that my handwriting is at worse. Basically my handwriting is good enough but because I type faster and that’s makes me want to write faster too, as a result my handwriting is flat cursive in disarray people won’t even able to read it except myself.
    And yes that f handwriting is lovely…

    • Heh…so very familiar. Ironically, I never felt my handwriting was particularly illegible, but I do have people tell me they have difficulty reading what I’ve written. As for Little Satis’, sometimes he can’t even read his own handwriting!

  2. I’m a homeschool mom, and all 3 of my kids are struggling with cursive. My two youngest are just learning to write in cursive, so that’s understandable. My oldest who’s 13, has worse handwriting than his younger siblings who are 7 and 9! :/

    • So much of it has to do with personality and cognition. The biggest difficulty Little Satis has is slowing down his thought process. The same problem exists even in speech; his thoughts race ahead of his ability to express them, and in the rush to get all his ideas down, the actual letter formation goes out of the window.

    • Do you know, what a good idea! I never really considered revisiting cursive writing myself, but I must admit it would be nice to have some kind of script beyond simple printed letters.

      • Can try to google for cursive handwriting, print it out then practice upon it. If you don’t mind, just re-write on it again to save on printing cost. 🙂

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