Position-Pen-Brief forms

I am new.  I just purchased the Gregg simplified book to learn how to do short hand for meeting minutes.  I am puzzled about how to hold the pen when writing because it seems you go back and forth with where an a word begins and ends.  Will I ever understand an (he) from a letter (e), and (I )from an (a) etc…….., what kind of pen should I use and should I just concentrate on brief forms for meeting minutes and learn alphabet later…….I am feeling overwhelmed….
(by ccollett for everyone)

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  1. You can hold the pen the way you do when you write regular longhand. Just what's easiest for you… Wrist/hand position, technique – link may help with that, though Pen and pad – link with ideas on various types of pens you can use…   I would suggest starting from the beginning and working your way through, use what you know at your meetings and then as you learn more you can add more.  You can use long hand and shorthand at the same time.  You might feel more overwhelmed if you try to remember the brief froms because those require memorization as most don't go by any shorthand "rule".  So my suggestion is to just learn those as they're presented in the manual.   I thought there was a discussion somewhere on writing outlines, but I can't find it, so maybe not or maybe someone knows where to find it.    It's kind of hard when you don't have a teacher showing you how to write the outlines… Just start from the beginning of an outline and continue to the end, is the simpliest way to say that.   Also, learning shorthand will take some time.  Just give yourself some time and relax.  Enjoy the process.    If you feel Gregg is too hard for you at the moment, a letter type shorthand may be what you can use for minutes (unless you need to write down every word, then a tape recorder would work better).  So that may be an option.  I learned Speedwriting first (Gregg was too overwhelming for me at the time) and after learning that, I could learn Gregg easier.  And I had Diamond Jubilee Series which is even easier then Simplified (from what I've read on here).  Now I'm finished with Anniversary. Debbi

  2. Welcome ccollet.   The fastest-to-learn system I've ever come across is "Personal Shorthand" which has 10 theory lessons in the first book. I've got a book, and it's unbelievably simple. It does have a midlevel memory load — I can't remember the exact number of brief forms, but it's bigger than DJS — but you don't have to learn symbols, the shorthand uses only the letters of the alphabet. No special added symbols like Forkner or Speedwriting. Apparently, you can get up to 80 words a minute, which I think is the top speed.   You'll have noticed George, Andy, Ian, that this is not the Personal Shorthand you're talking about, it's newer and still in publication, totally alphabetical. It's quite elegant for a purely alphabetic system, and you don't have to change the way you write your alphabet.   If you need low level shorthand skills next week, this is the one. Books available at this link for full price or at abebooks or ebay for much less.   http://www.eralearning.com/01/ps.php   And as Debbi and Sh-ndNut say, Speedwriting made it easier to learn Gregg eventually.   Don't mistake my meaning, Gregg mavens and ccollett, I'm not suggesting you do the alphabetic shorthand for any other reason than it is quick to learn and would help with minutes until you can get up and running with "real" shorthand. (Oops, is that my bias hanging out again?)   I still think Gregg is the only way to go ultimately.    

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