Just Saying Hi! (From a Centennial Writer) and also a Few Questions

Hi everyone! It’s my first time posting on this blog ever since I joined about three months ago. My name is Matthew and I’m 18 years old, from the Philippines. I actually discovered this blog a year ago but was just able to join a few months back since I don’t know how to. Sorry for not being able to post as soon as possible since I’m still in college (I’m on my graduating year so I’m really busy at the university). I’m also attending my OJT when Carlos accepted my request for access so the most that I could do was to read the new posts if I have time. Anyway, I’m really happy to discover this blog ’cause at least, I found out that shorthand, as a way and art of writing, hasn’t really died and is still being enjoyed and propagated by enthusiasts like many of you (including me, of course. HAHA!).
By the way, as what I’ve put in the title, I am a Centennial Writer. I learned shorthand when it was offered to us as an elective during my third year in high school. We weren’t able to finish the theory during that time (it was only up to lesson 9 of the Centennial college book since the Steno class is just done once a week and the subject didn’t continue to be taught the following year) but shorthand really sparked my interest so I studied it by myself. Since I don’t know this blog as a resource back then and I don’t have a teacher or a friend who has the interest to continue studying shorthand with me (my high school Steno teacher is busy and we’re not that really close), I think the way on how I studied shorthand wasn’t really good. Nevertheless, I can say that I’m somewhat proficient with the Centennial theory as of the moment, though not really a fast writer. Shorthand has been really helpful to me this college, especially when taking down notes in class and various talks or getting some data for my undergrad thesis. 
Just a few questions: How did you discover Gregg shorthand? Basing from what I’ve read from the older posts (I’m back-reading old posts, actually), a lot of you took it at college or high school but what about those who haven’t? At present, I’m doing dictations though I think I’m struggling past 100 or 110wpm. Actually, I don’t think I’m doing my dictations right. Any suggestions? 
P.S. Sorry for the long post. I’ll try to make my post shorter next time. This is my first so kindly forgive me. 😀 I’m really looking forward to talk with everyone of you, though I can’t guarantee that I would be online all the time. Thanks for this blog! HAHA.
7 comments Add yours
  1. How I discovered shorthand: I had known about shorthand as a concept for quite a while.

    After finding a book on shorthand someone had left lying around in a waiting area, I thought I'd learn some.

    The book was on German Unified Shorthand but I decided to have a look around for other systems; I wanted one that I could write with a modern writing implement that cannot easily distinguish between broad and narrow strokes — so I wanted what Gregg called a light-line phonography.

    I decided on Stiefografie (a minority shorthand) for German and learned that.

    I thought I'd pick up an English shorthand for English notes as well.

    At first, I had a look at Teeline, and looked at that for a while. In various forums, I came across posts by CricketB who had looked at that system for a while as well before leaving it for Gregg.

    Eventually, I decided to follow her lead, partly for the uniformity (Teeline is quite a bit freeer in permissible abbreviations and users are encouraged to make their own, since the focus is on making notes for your own consumption rather than something that others can also read) and to a small extent for the possible speed gains.

    I got myself a whole battery of books, mostly in the Simplified system. I haven't poured a lot of energy into learning it yet, but it's on my list.

    At the moment, I know the alphabet and a few short forms but not all of them, and I don't have practise writing it.

    1. I actually looked at Teeline one time and decided to learn it as another form of shorthand aside from Gregg, which I already know when I discovered Teeline. I just found out later that it really doesn't appeal to me (I disliked the inconsistencies with outlines and the way it changes a character for facile joining) and I liked the look of Gregg more, so I just stayed with Gregg.

      As of the moment, I'm actually trying to upgrade my Gregg to Simplified from Centennial. What version of Gregg did you actually choose to write? When I learned Gregg in high school, I don't know yet that there are other versions; that's why when I and my classmates discovered Andrew Owen's website on Gregg (which is in Anniversary), we were all confused. When we asked our steno teacher back in high school if we're writing a certain outline right based from Anniversary that's different in Centennial, she just tells us that the outline's wrong. Anyway, at least upon further research, we found out that there are other versions and it just happens that the one being taught to us is different from what we saw in Andrew's site back then. It seems that she doesn't know that there are other versions too.

  2. Welcome Matthew !!! You are so lucky to have discovered and become interested in shorthand at your young age. It will be useful throughout your life….. no matter what technology provides.

    I was in high school from 1959 to 1963 and I believe that my high school offered shorthand classes, but… unfortunately… I didn't take any of the classes. They would most likely have been teaching Gregg Simplified.

    At some point right after college, I thought about learning Gregg Notehand and even bought the book, but life was so busy that I never did anything but skim through the book without actually trying it.

    But that brief look through the Notehand book left me intrigued. So here I am at the age of 70, learning Gregg Anniversary and loving it. It will take me the rest of my life to go through all of the Gregg books that I have bought on eBay, but it will be great fun !!!

    So… the moral of the story is…. learn it now… at the age of 18…. don't put it off as I did !!!

    1. Thanks Lola Susan! (That's how we address a female person of elderly age here in the Philippines. We use it to address our grandmothers with great respect. It's the equivalent of grandmother in Filipino, actually. 😀 ) It is indeed useful! Whether just taking down class notes or writing my thoughts in class that I don't want others to read, shorthand has been my friendly tool. You may not have learned Gregg before due to some constraints but learning never ends. It's never too late! At least now, you're studying something productive to keep your mind sharp as well as to have more fun for the rest of your life! 😉

    2. Lola Susan…. I love that. Thank you Matthew !!

      Yes, one of the reasons that I decided to tackle Gregg Anniversary at my age was to keep my brain cells active for as long as possible. I know that Gregg is a good challenge to my brain and I now get to do something that I wish I had done when I was your age.

      Again… welcome to the group. It is a friendly and extremely knowledgeable group !!!

  3. Hi Garred. I am a professional in my mid 50's, and just took up shorthand a few years ago. I started with Aniversary. I have little interest in taking dictation or writing business letters in shorthand. I can record things with my cell phone and if I ever need a letter I type it and print it. My interest is primarily in taking notes. I switched to a strategy of learning the phonetic alphabet, a very few common brief forms, common prefix and suffix abbreviations, and the abbreviation principle so I could create my own abbreviations in the esoteric subjects for which I take notes.

    Most of the well-known Gregg systems including Aniversary focus on dictation and often outdated business letter vocabulary. A few that don't are Notehand, Greghand, and the first Gregg publication from 1888. You can find texts for each of these lesser known publications here on the forum.

Leave a Reply