Here at Transcription City, we offer a range of typing services and document translation services. We seem to have a very nostalgic relationship with typewriters these days. When we type an email or letter today, we hit soft, plastic keys on a computer or laptop keyboard. All while looking at the screen, where we can effortlessly change the style and layout of our page and the computer even corrects the mistakes we are making when we are not very good at spelling.
But in the good old days this was of course very different. From mechanical typewriters that were extremely heavy and clunky and almost non-movable, typewriters also evolved into lighter and more portable models , eventually arriving at the electric ones that had at least some of the more modern features.
There were many different companies that built typewriters, such as Remington, IBM, Olivetti, Corona, Underwood and Olympia to name but a few. Some of these no longer exits, while others evolved with the times and expanded into Word Processing and later computers.
Many famous authors claim to have had special relationships with their typewriters and specific brands. Mark Twain’s use of Remington typewriters was even used for advertising their machines.
Ernest Hemingway was known to be standing up while writing his books on a Royal Typewriter and J.R.R. Tolkien wrote part of ‘Lord of the Rings’ balancing a typewriter on a bed in the attic, as his desk was too full of things to work there.
But even in our times today, the typewriter is not dead. The DJ and journalist John Peel named the book publication of his journalistic articles after the typewriter he had written them on – ‘The Olivettti Chronicles’. Last year a video emerged of Hollywood actor Tom Hanks showing viewers how to change a ribbon in a typewriter. He was also disclosing the fact that he writes his novels on a typewriter rather than a computer. The author Danielle Steel mentioned as late as 2011 that she is still writing her books on a typewriter that is older than herself. It is a 1946 Olympia manual typewriter that she bought for $20 and affectionately named ‘Ollie’ She has written more than 146 books and she is still using the same machine she bought all these years ago.
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