I've written here before of my interest in manual typewriters and the changes they make in my writing process. I have four of the things now, three-quarters of that stock picked up from the eternal yard sale set up a block or two from my favorite bar. My babies represent four of the big classic brands: Underwood, Olivetti, Royal, and Olympia.
I love writing on the things. They smell like machine oil, dust, and ink and make quite a racket. The work feels like work, percussive, like I'm pounding the words out rather than politely poking them into my hard drive and Cloud. The downsides are, of course, the inability to save files electronically and a certain inflexibility in the editing room.
|Olympia Carina 1 (Early 1980s)|
|The Olivetti Lettera 33 (types in cursive, 1968)|
|Underwood Universal (1950s)|
|Royal Quiet Deluxe (1948)|
My heart leapt, then, when I found USBTypewriter.com. The fellow there, Jack Zylkin, has rigged a way to use a manual typewriter as a computer keyboard, linking it to your desktop, laptop, or iPad with Ye Olde USB port. Zylkin sells an "easy" conversion kit and a "DIY soldering kit." He also sells full conversions, but I think enough of my skills that I will attempt the process myself ... and then beg for help.
Here's to the best of both worlds!