Today I am welcoming Jan Morgan to Stationery Love.
Hello, I am Janice Morgan, widowed with a married son, two grandchildren and a tiny Papillon dog. My obsession with stationery started at an early age. If you were as old as me, you would remember finishing an exercise book in school, and having to queue for a new one from the school store room.
I would clutch mine to my flat bosom and treasure it as if it were made of gold. It took a lot of courage to make the first mark on the virgin paper. Selecting my best fountain pen, and a clean sheet of blotting paper, I would start the almost holy ritual of writing the first words in my best handwriting.
Not for me the school issue dipping pen and ink from the inkwell. I only used ‘Quink.’ Unfortunately my handwriting would soon deteriorate or a blot would mysteriously appear on the page. In haste I would turn the page, starting anew because I could not bear to continue writing on a soiled sheet. My teachers often berated me for wasting paper.
At home I used a large drawing book to make up advertisements for imaginary products. It contained drawings of the products accompanied by logos, jingles and claims for their special properties. Should anything mar a page, it would be cut out of the book and burned on the coal fire.
As I have got older, I have learned not to place myself on the path of temptation. If funds are low I cast my eyes aside when displays of stationery are in the vicinity. Many people, due to their addictive personalities join AA (Alcohol Anonymous). I am thinking of starting a similar help group called SAS (Stationery Addicts Support).
Here is a selection of some of my notebooks:
A few years ago, mindful of my addiction; I tried to explain it by penning the following poem:
The virgin page invites the pen
Like girls seducing eager men.
Hovering over vacant sheet
It starts to write… then stops again,
The crisp white beauty not to spoil
With eager scribbling that may soil,
Nor scratching of the writer’s pen
Destructive in its daily toil.
Mindful now that it should write
No careless words profane or trite,
The pen resists temptation to
Impair the vision in his sight.
The virgin still remaining pure
Continues to beckon and to lure.
The writer halts again, then sees
A simple but effective cure.
Indecision an issue no more,
He commits page to empty drawer,
Hidden it will stay until.
‘Tis held by future men with awe.
But when at last released from cage
Nothing remains of pretty page;
Instead behold a tatty scrap
Of paper yellowed now with age.
If only pen had prettily pranced
Across the page as it skipped and danced,
No more a virgin it would be.
Still a beauty, but more enhanced
With writing displayed for all to see,
Bearing witness for eternity:
A record of a fleeting thought
Captured in perpetuity.
Since my retirement I spend most of my spare time painting and writing. In December last year I won a digital publishing contract for my psychological thriller Borderline. My novel was subsequently released in February this year under the pen name of Jan Mary Moran but unfortunately the publishing company folded in May. I am now working on getting it back on the market by means of self-publishing. Watch this space.
Because I paint I was able to design the cover of Borderline myself. If you look closely at the brain you will see a female figure curled up in the foetus position. This is the position adopted by the main character when she enters a psychotic episode. Yet more mark making on yet more paper.
UPDATE Borderline by Jan Mary Moran has now been re-published as an e-book and is available on Amazon. Check it out!
A very famous Persian poet. Omar Khayaam, wrote:
The moving finger writes; and, having writ
Moves on: nor all thy piety nor wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a line,
Nor all thy tears wash out a word of it.
These lines can not only be taken literally, but have provided me with a philosophy for life.
Thank you for sharing with us Jan. Your poem is very poignant.
I remember using Quink at home! Loved re-filling my fountain pen.
Love the owls, oh and the giraffes and … gorgeous notebooks.
SAS sounds good too Jan. We’ll all join in your group 🙂
Follow Jan on Twitter @JanMaryMoran