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Notes from a Public Typewriter - Michael Gustafson

Hardcover Published: 29th October 2018
ISBN: 9781925713732
Number Of Pages: 160

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When Michael Gustafson and his wife Hilary opened Literati Bookstore in Ann Arbor, Michigan, they put out a typewriter for anyone to use. They had no idea what to expect. Would people ask metaphysical questions? Write mean things? Pour their souls onto the page? Yes, no, and did they ever.Every day, people of all ages sit down at the public typewriter.

Children perch atop grandparents' knees, both sets of hands hovering above the metal keys- I LOVE YOU. Others walk in alone on Friday nights and confess their hopes- I will find someone someday. And some leave funny asides for the next person who sits down- I dislike people, misanthropes, irony, and ellipses . . . and lists too.In Notes from a Public Typewriter, Michael and designer Oliver Uberti have combined their favorite notes with essays and photos to create an ode to community and the written word that will surprise, delight, and inspire.

About the Authors

Michael Gustafson is the co-owner of Literati Bookstore, an independent bookstore in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He lives in Ann Arbor with his wife and Literati Bookstore co-owner, Hilary.

Oliver Uberti is an award-winning graphic designer and was Senior Design Editor at National Geographic before turning to books. He is the co-author and designer of two books published by Penguin in the UK, London- The Information Capital (2014) and Where the Animals Go (2016). He lives in Los Angeles.

Worth reading.


Can dip into this book any time. Gives insight into other's lives. Good pick-me-up read.

North Tasmania


delightful, moving, thought-provoking


Notes from a Public Typewriter is a charming little red hardcover book edited by bookstore owner, Michael Gustafson and graphic design artist, Oliver Uberti. In Ann Arbor, Michigan in 2013, when he and his wife open Literati Bookstore, Michael Gustafson puts out a light blue Olivetti Lettra 32, inserts clean paper and leaves it for customers. One of the notes typed on the first day: "'Thank you for being here'. I didn't see the typer's identity, so it appeared as if the typewriter itself was thanking me. As though the dusty machine was happy to be used again." Collated are a myriad of comments, pleas, words of wisdom, quips, aphorisms, secrets, worries, jokes, advice, poetry, confessions, proposals, simple observations, with their quirky misspellings and overtypings, that are arranged in a semblance of order under cleverly titled chapters. The typewriter, the store, the people, the wall, love, frustration, sorrow, local personalities, heartbreak, hope, humour and even a bit of mystery all get their turn. Some of the illustrations require the reader to turn the book upside down. Two years after they opened, Oliver Uberti, responsible for the store's logo, began painting the sixty-foot side wall of the store: selected notes from the typewriter had the public fascinated as he painted them, and make for a tourist attraction. Literati, Ann Arbor, Michigan definitely seems worth a visit!! Some samples: "Where's the power button?" and "Avoid identity theft. Use a typewriter. They are much harder to hack." (two among several that will amuse readers of a certain vintage) "Life, like this typewriter, has no backspace. Type strongly and don't look back." "We had a date night and chose to come to Literati. Please do not tell our children we came here without them." "I wrote a letter to Santa today so he doesn't think we only talk to him when we want something." This is such an original and intriguing concept. Selecting the notes to be included from the thousands accumula



Notes from a Public Typewriter

4.0 2


ISBN: 9781925713732
ISBN-10: 1925713733
Audience: General
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 160
Published: 29th October 2018
Publisher: Scribe Publications
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 18.7 x 13.5  x 2.0
Weight (kg): 0.34