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Learn more about the book "Marcel's Letters" and the font P22 Marcel Script, which is based on the handwriting of conscripted WWII laborer Marcel Heuzé
Carolyn Porter, Marcel Heuzé, Marcel's Letters, Graphic Design, Font Design, P22 Marcel Script
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Ten years of Marcel Script

graphic showing "10 years" and the words "P22 Marcel Script" set in the font and with calligraphic swirls along the edge for decoration.

Today, Valentine’s Day, marks the 10th anniversary of the release of P22 Marcel Script, the font based on Marcel Heuzé’s beautiful handwritten letters. Calling the anniversary ‘monumental’ would, perhaps, be an overstatement. ‘Meaningful’ is a probably a better word. The release was, for me, a meaningful personal and professional milestone. Over the years the font has been used on book covers, wedding invitations, greeting cards, in magazine articles, and more. The delight I feel when I see it in use does not subside. If you’ve used the font, I send a sincere thank you. 

Want to see some samples of the font in use? See samples here.

William M. Parr Handwriting, 1854

A few months back I found the most extraordinary handwriting sample for sale on eBay. I planned to blog about it immediately after it arrived from England, but the sample ended up confounding me. I thought, naively (…that won’t be a surprise to any of you who read Marcel’s Letters…), that I’d be able to figure out who William M. Parr from the Brook House Academy was. But I haven’t found a thing.

Let me describe the handwriting sample to you:


Love, Hugs & Kisses XO

If you’ve ever been to my house, you might have noticed a type-centric collection decorating our space: 4″ and 5″ vintage wooden letterpress X’s and O’x. Hugs and kisses! Over the last decade I have collected more than 150 letters; they can be found perched atop picture frames in the living room, stacked next to books in the book case, and displayed atop an oversize photo in our dining room. The collection includes chunky slab serif letters, graceful curved serif letters, spare sans serif letters, inline letters, narrow letters, wide letters, and anything in between.


Happy 98th Birthday, Louise!

Photo of Louise blowing out candles on her 98th Birthday cake

Last night I had the honor of attending Louise Dillery’s 98th birthday party. And it was indeed a party: she wore a tiara, received a pile of gifts, and the room sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to her first in English, then in French. Her three surviving children were there, including her daughter, Denise who lives in Las Vegas (shown in photo above), and she was surrounded by long-time friends and neighbors. There were also a handful of Louise’s former French students — people who graduated high school in the 1970s — who were inspired to become French teachers themselves. The woman I sat next to taught French for 27 years — all because of Louise.

The sentiment in the room was unanimous: we all love this amazing woman, and were so happy to be able to celebrate with her!

Want to read an essay I wrote about Louise’s time in tuberculosis quarantine? Here’s a link.

Farewell to our big, sweet boy

It’s been a tear-filled two weeks in our home. On Friday, September 22, Aaron and I had to say goodbye to Watson: guardian of the treat closet, unapologetic bed hog, peanut butter connoisseur, reluctant nose booper, grumpy observer of backyard rabbits, drool factory, 110 pound couch potato.


May 2, 1943: “I will be fine working in this new job until the liberation.”

To: Madame Pierre Hericher, Paris, 20e, de Ménilmontant 110
From: Monsieur Pierre Hericher, Prisoner No. 21.523, Stalag 19

At camp. May 2, 1943

My little wolf1

I got out of the infirmary this week. My fingers still need to be massaged to get back their movement. I get them massaged every evening after work because I am now living in the camp. I work in a military store with paper supplies, light work that suits my hand that was handicapped2 by these two accidents, the one of last June and this one. I think that I will be fine working in this new job until the liberation. I was thinking a bit that I might be discharged but I’m probably not injured badly enough. No problem, I’ll just wait.  


“Please Write”: What a Delight

I recently had the pleasure of attending the launch party for Lynne Kolze’s new book, “Please Write: Finding Joy and Meaning in the Soulful Art of Handwritten Letters” (Beaver’s Pond Press, 2023). The book is a gem — and I’m not saying that because the book uses the font P22 Marcel Script (more on that later) or that Lynn had the best launch party swag (more on that later, too). 


Beautiful Billheads

We’re all familiar with the business term “letterhead,” right? But what about “billhead”? I’ll confess I only learned the word a couple of months ago. 


Saving Private Ryan + French Forced Labor

Saving Private Ryan, 57:40  ©Dreamworks Pictures and Paramount Pictures

I’ve met with any number of book clubs where someone remarked how little they knew about French forced labor during WWII before hearing Marcel’s story (…hey, me too, sister. Me too!) A number of readers have also remarked that — now that they know more about what happened to conscripted French civilians — they’ve ‘picked up’ on references to it while reading other books.