Long Live Pitman's Shorthand Guestbook

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March 30th 2018
09:15:57 AM
Your Name  

Linda Gilbert

Your Location  

New Zealand

Years of Shorthand  

1973-75

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

New Era I think

Your Comments  

Hello

Thank you so much for this great website. I love reacquainting myself with the outlines. I still use shorthand and it literally saved my life. I was able to get a job when our mother died unexpectedly and so pay rent and put food on the table. I have a fondness for it giving me my first career.

I saw a wonderful quote on your site last year about the qualities needed by stenographers, but can’t find it after looking for some time. It said something about tenacity and intelligence I think and you’d also written it in shorthand- I wondered if you might remind me what it said please?

Thanks again for this superb resource.

kind regards
Linda

(=I think it might be the blog \"Making A Start\" 25 Jan 2015. If you use the Reading website search box for \"tenacity\", all the other places that word appears will come up as well.

Pitman\'s does seem to produce a fondness in its writers, especially when it has proved its worth in real life use, and it then becomes a trusted \"old friend\". I hope that present-day students will persevere until they get to that happy state.

Glad you enjoy it all, and I think it must be New Era that you learned as you would have noticed a lot of differences if it had been Pitman 2000. BP)

   
March 26th 2018
05:26:01 PM
Your Name  

Katie

Your Location  

Virginia, USA

Years of Shorthand  

1

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

New Era

Your Comments  

I am an archivist\'s assistant and was given an collection of diaries from the American Civil War to process. The man who wrote the diaries was a lawyer and so wrote in Pitman in some sections of his diaries. Learning Pitman in order to make these diaries accessible has been challenging but absolutely fascinating and although I\'m reading an antiquated version of Pitman, this website has been extremely helpful! Thanks so much!

(= Well done on that achievement, and I am glad my website has helped. I have had in mind to find out and document the changes over the various historical versions of Pitman\'s, although that would be quite a project but I think well worth doing at some time. BP)

   
February 11th 2018
06:54:25 AM
Your Name  

Ben Gosling

Your Location  

Suffolk UK

Years of Shorthand  

intermittent

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

n.Era

Your Comments  

It\'s happened again, Beryl: your most recent blog just shows blanks where shorthand ought to be. I don\'t think it\'s anything I\'m doing wrong.

(=Many thanks, fixed now. Sorry for late action, Bravenet didn\'t advise me of post pending, which is unusual for them. I am putting down this problem to some glitch in Google Photos, as I always go through and check each blog once it is published, but in future I will have to check them again at intervals, as obviously this could occur at any time subsequently. Thank you for your help. BP)

   
November 17th 2017
02:51:38 AM
Your Name  

Jackie Lewis

Your Location  

London

Years of Shorthand  

36

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

Pitman 2000 and New Era

Your Comments  

Can you advise why the word Righteous is written with an upward R and Tee when the pronunciation would indicate that it should be upward R and Chay?

(=I assume that the outline reflected the correct careful pronunciation in Pitman’s time, with the Ch version regarded as sloppy or clipped, like we do nowadays when some people use Ch in “Tuesday” or “tutor” or the J sound in “due” or “duty”. There may be people nowadays who would insist it is “-tyuss” and not Ch. As I have found when investigating words, there is (most annoyingly) no such thing as “the pronunciation”, it all varies with different persons, areas, ages, social situation, context and speed of speaking.

This form does have the advantage of retaining the primitive form for “right” thus keeping all derivatives similar. In the Introduction in the big red dictionary, it talks about “Derivatives anticipated” which means that when decisions were being made as to the official outline for a word, all the derivatives were considered together, so that, as far as possible and convenient, the outline could be modified easily and clearly for them, so as to avoid awkward outlines or ones too different from each other. The result is that they are easier to recall and read back. In the beginning days, learners were told to “choose the best outline” but as the system progressed, it became necessary to decide on the “best outlines” both in publications and in the dictionaries that soon followed, and so they became fixed.

Having said that, anyone is free of course to write any outline any way they choose, as long as they can read back, although I would assume for an exam or a teacher’s exam one would have to adhere to the official outlines for the system that one is claiming to be able to write. BP)

   
October 31st 2017
02:35:23 PM
Your Name  

Harikiran

Your Location  

India

Years of Shorthand  

1 year

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

N.Era

Your Comments  

This is a god send for people like me who are still learning Pitman Shorthand.

My first salute to Sir Pitman for inventing it and second to you for helping us to learn it easily.

Referring to Shorthand dictionary for each word was becoming tedious and this blog has really helped me master the skills faster.

Please continue the blog as you are doing a great job. May God Almighty give you health and strength to continue this great job!

Thanks a lot once again!

(=Thank you for your kind comments. This is exactly the purpose of the site, as fast writing needs familiarity with a large vocabulary of correct outlines, rather than an accumulation of so-called \"shortcuts\". Best wishes with your studies. BP)

   
October 28th 2017
11:38:53 AM
Your Name  

Susan McCann

Your Location  

Southampton, England

Years of Shorthand  

Fifty Nine, almost to the day

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

New Era

Your Comments  

Thank you so much for your blog. I had dismissed my achievement in the world of shorthand, dictation so that this morning when my son aged 46 stated \'you can write shorthand\' it awakened a skill. I will rediscover it again thanks to your commitment. Kind regards, Susan McCann

(=It never disappears, it doesn\'t take much to bring it all back. BP)

   
October 19th 2017
10:38:28 AM
Your Name  

Mark

Your Location  

New Jersey, USA

Years of Shorthand  

Can't say zero anymore

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

N.Era

Your Comments  

Beryl, do you have any tips or advice when writing N. Era on unlined paper?

=
(1) Insert one or more vowel signs to distinguish otherwise identical outlines. This is the quickest way. Inserting the first vowel will replace the necessity to write in position, but some need more than that (e.g. amazing, amusing).

(2) Put a short dotted line to show where the notepad line would have been, underneath or to the right hand side of the outline. This is the normal method to “correct” an outline written in the wrong or unclear position (3 dots or dashes are sufficient). It would only be necessary for first or third position outlines, as second position can be assumed as the default. This is the only way if the outline cannot be vocalised e.g. short forms and contractions. I don’t recommend adding any vowels to short forms or contractions, as that makes it look like a regular outline, thus reintroducing ambiguity.

(3) It might be helpful to write each line of shorthand further apart, so that the writing is not cramped and so positions remain clearer.

   
October 17th 2017
03:18:03 PM
Your Name  

Sylvia Kent

Your Location  

Essex

Years of Shorthand  

1954-current

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

New Era

Your Comments  

Wonderful website, Beryl. As a freelance writer of many years, I\'ve always kept up my interest in shorthand (working in business and Parliament for decades). It is second nature now and very useful in meetings and writerly gatherings!

   
August 27th 2017
11:23:21 AM
Your Name  

David T

Your Location  

Sydney

Years of Shorthand  

30

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

N.Era

Your Comments  

I first learned shorthand from a friend (now passed away). She wrote her shopping list in these \"odd looking squiggles\". I asked her what it was. Long story short, she started to teach me and, at that time 1981, she was still teaching secretarial studies for TAFENSW. I still use it occasionally, especially for computer passwords, which I keep in a small notebook on my desk. I was amongst the last category of \'stenographer\' employed by the NSW government in 1987.

I own a copy of the new testament and Alice in Wonderland, the former I never read. Also many text books, including a fully defined Pitman Dictionary.

Nice to find this

(=Glad you enjoy the site. Can I just mention that it is very easy for anyone finding \"squiggles\" to post them online for a translation, so an additional layer of obfuscation of the passwords, or distortion of the outlines, might be helpful, if your notebook is accessible to others. Hence I have put your initial instead of surname! I have the New Testament in Phonography, 1886, which is probably the same as yours, harder going when it is not New Era. BP)

   
August 24th 2017
08:08:56 AM
Your Name  

Fay

Your Location  

New Zealand

Years of Shorthand  

60 years

N.Era/Pit2K/Tee/Grg/??  

New Era

Your Comments  

So lovely to find this blog. I passed Reporters Exam 180 wpm when I was 18. Still use shorthand all the time (now 76) and taught at nightschool for several years. When asked granddaughter if she wanted me to teach her she \"rolled her eyes\". Oh dear!!! Examiner for Reporters Exam was a Hansard reporter from NZ Parliament. NZ Herald had an article in the newspaper \"Five Fast Girls\" when five of us passed our Reporters Exam. History now!

   


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