As a writer, a part of me has always been drawn to anything related to vintage writing. One day, I was hit with this sudden urge to look up typewriters.
I was very surprised to find really high prices locally, but then I believe that's only normal because typewriters are generally considered antiques and collectibles. I didn't have too much of a hefty budget, and hence I settled for a basic one.
I had it shipped all the way from China, because typewriters in Malaysia are priced much higher as most of them come from famous brands. The seller was an enthusiast as well, which you don't meet often especially in China. He was kind enough to pack my typewriter up as best as he could as I was shipping it via ocean freights.
You will be able to purchase the exact same one on Taobao.com. Just a simple search will suffice, though you will need to be very careful with the shipping.
I received a heavy parcel that was wrapped in jute fabric. Underneath it was a large polystyrene box, and finally, the PVC cover of the typewriter. When covered properly with it's case, the typewriter can be carried around like a briefcase.
Listening to the antique clicking away as I typed gave me a sense of peace I can't seem to explain in words. I now have more motivation to write down the poetry in my head, as I would be able to enjoy the clacking of the keys, and the crisp 'ding' sound at the end of the sentence.
The funniest thing about the whole incident, was how one of the keys got stuck. I immediately panicked and texted the seller. He simply said, "Oh, just knock it a little bit and it should work again." I thought he was joking until I gave the typewriter a small whack at it's side, and immediately the jammed key started working again.
Here's what the typing looks like from the typewriter!
Anyway, I'm not sure if anyone would like to know the details of how the typewriter works, but here's some for those who are interested!
You can type in two colors, black and red. There is a small switch to flip when you need to change colors.
This version of the typewriter is considered more modern, having symbols with the same concept as our 'Ctrl' key on our modern keyboard. By pressing down on the 'Shift' or 'Ctrl', you'd be able to type in capital letters as well as other symbols.
There's also a 'Caps Lock' button on the typewriter! Along with backspace, in case you didn't type clearly or you pressed spacebar twice.
The ink comes in straps rolled into a wheel. The seller says that it should last up to two years depending on how much I use it.
As it has a roller system for it's typing paper, you can't put in cards without having them crease. So the best choice for paper would still be thin paper.
Even though I've run into some small issues, it's still overall a very pleasant experience.
Alright! Now for the second part of the blog, the wax seals! I didn't buy the two items together, and actually bought them on separate occasions. Journaling was my suggested form of therapy, so I try my best to write as much as I can. Wax seals just makes the entire experience better and more 'ceremonial' for me.
I hope in the future, I'd be able to have enough equipment to actually post clips of the entire sealing process because it's just so satisfying to watch.
With the stamps, I also bought different colors of waxes to signify the different chakras. It may sound off to many, but I believe I can learn a lot from what I write, especially when moments of inspiration hit. Apart from poetry, I also type words of affirmation and advice that I think I should remember.
If you would like to see more of what I write, do follow @rubywriteswiththeflow on Instagram. I separate my writing from my usual accounts because somehow, I find it a little embarrassing to admit all the emotions I feel. I just don't feel like explaining too much about the fantasies and scenarios in my head.
Do let me know if you have any questions! I would love to meet more writers for are into typewriting too! And in the future, maybe I'll be able to try calligraphy as well!