Clickety-clack: a special ‘type’ of writer


Sophomore Bridget Morris creates a story on her 1997 Brother PY-80 typewriter. Photo courtesy of Shawn Morris

Miranda Baez, Prowler Staff

Writing is a common hobby among today’s youth, and with the help of new technology, the art of creative writing is more convenient than ever. Computers make it quick and easy to transcribe stories by just clacking on a few keys.
Whenever sophomore Bridget Morris feels a burst of inspiration to create a story, she also begins not on the keys of a computer, but instead, the keys of a typewriter.
“There’s some kind of aesthetic to using something like this to write stories,” Morris said. “Using a computer is obviously way more convenient, but the process of setting up and actually seeing it function as you go along is so fascinating. I still write using my computer a lot of the time, but when I do it on my typewriter, it feels like I’ve actually worked on creating something.”
Typically, the first thing that comes to mind at the mention of a typewriter is a charming, vintage machine from the early 20th century with all kinds of mechanical gears and wheels sticking out of it. Morris originally sought out a similar model; however, typewriters from that era are rare and sell for hundreds of dollars.
“I told my mom about how badly I wanted a typewriter, and soon after she told me that my aunt happened to have one just sitting around in her storage,” Morris said. “A couple weeks later it showed up on my doorstep through the mail, and it ended up being one of the coolest things I own.”
The typewriter is a 1997 Brother PY-80. It runs on a hefty amount of D batteries and roars while in-use.
“It sounds like an earthquake whenever she uses that thing,” Morris’ younger sister, Meagan, said. “I can always hear it from the other side of the house.”
While her family might get annoyed with the noise, operating the typewriter is a delight to Morris. Watching each character get stamped onto the page as the ribbons and wheels turn and whir sparks a joy that makes her writings feel vivid and lively.
“I have so much fun with it I barely notice all the sounds it makes,” Morris said.
Writing has always made Morris happy. Her stories date back to late elementary school where she would think up characters and create vast fantasy settings. That was also around the time when Morris discovered her favorite genre.
“A lot of my stories involve betrayal and drama, as well as mystery and solving conflicts,” Morris said. “Back when I was in elementary school, I used to write a silly kiddie book series about a detective.”
Today, Morris works on stories multiple times a week, mostly on her typewriter. On occasion, she will use a computer if she feels compelled to share her stories on various websites for fellow writers with similar passions.
“If I ever want to publish something written on the typewriter, I’ll carefully transcribe it onto my computer and then post it online,” Morris said. “That tends to take a while, but it’s worth it.”
Morris takes inspiration from books, movies, TV shows and various content on the internet, and will either write fanwork or at times will create original work.
“I haven’t gotten around to finishing much of my original stuff, but I do have a good amount of fanwork published,” Morris said. “I have a lot of characters and plotlines that I definitely want to work on and finish.”
The unique circumstances that Morris writes under, along with her strong ambition has even inspired her friends to write their own works as well.
“It’s really cool how [Morris is] just able to do this kind of stuff,” sophomore Mackenzie Herriman said. “I also want to get into writing, and seeing [Morris’] strong drive is really inspiring.”
Morris leaves the following advice for any aspiring writers.
“If you keep working at building stories and characters, eventually things will work out, and you will improve as a writer and make some great things,” Morris said.