Thoughts on Writing

For the Modern Penman

Happy New Year 2021

December 31st, 2020 by D. T. Grimes.

Happy New Year from Grimes

I’m very excited about all of the projects that I have planned for 2021, but if 2020 has taught me anything, it’s the importance of maintaining a better work—life balance. A lot of the projects and traveling that I would have normally undertaken were postponed this year, due to the pandemic, and I was left with a lot more time than usual to read, study, and practice. I think I’ve made more progress in my penwork in 2020 than the last three years combined. Looking back, I’m very proud of how I spent most days of last year…and wondering how I can maintain that momentum moving forward.

This year, my main goal is to bring penmen together. However that happens—whether it is through collaborations, co-teaching, publishing the first issue of my upcoming penmanship journal, or even just getting on the phone and calling my friends more often, I’m dedicating 2021 to make a better effort towards rewriting what it means to “work from home” and finding ways to build a tight-knit community around those of us who are passionate and actively chasing excellence in traditional American Penmanship.

I think that by banding together, we have a much better shot of contributing something worthwhile as a generation to this artform.

Wherever you find yourself, I hope that your 2021 is as productive and fulfilling as I hope mine to be, and I’m very thankful for your readership and support. Happy New Year.

D. T. Grimes


How to Improve Your Handwriting

November 27th, 2020 by D. T. Grimes.

Since mid-2020, I’ve been moderating a large Subreddit dedicated to handwriting. In that time, I’ve gained some interesting insight into what non-calligraphers are interested in when it comes to improving their handwriting. What kinds of questions do they ask? What do they want to get out of their handwriting? How do they make decisions about which path forward is best?

Being a penman, I’ve tried to listen closely and put myself in the shoes of the subscribers of the Subreddit—setting aside some of my own biases to create this guide in an effort to help orient the would-be handwriting aficionado of tomorrow. If handwriting is something you’re thinking about getting into, this guide is for you.

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Oblique Pen Holder Set-up and Adjustment

March 7th, 2019 by D. T. Grimes.

Updated Nov 29th, 2020

Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure of writing with holders from many different penmakers. I’ve written with the holders that belonged to hundreds of students in workshops or class environments. I’ve even made several dozen myself. The one thing that I can say for certain is this:

The only good holder is one that is well adjusted for writing.

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