Dear writers (fountain penners can take a break, because I’ll be preaching to the choir):
First piece of advice if you are thinking of crossing over to the fountain pen side: get used to little old ladies, after spotting your pen, saying “I used to love those things, but they were so messy!”
My hands are spot-free most days. Ok, some days. Maybe on days that I don’t write which are few and far between.
Do you find I make fountain pen friendly journals because I use fountain pens and I know you appreciate them. That’s what I do because it works, and people love it. But I want to be making books for people who don’t write. Wanna join me?
There is something special about writing by hand that I don’t get on a device. The main beef I have with writing creatively via computer is that damn ‘backspace’ key. I tend to write stream of consciousness style, and when I type I end up deleting half of the stuff I write, and I don’t stay conscious of the words as I’m writing them.
With a pencil I have the same issue, that eraser is just another back space key, but when I write in pen, I have a different kind of connection with my words, I am one step aheaed of the words when I’m in the zone. With pencil I tend to scribble away and end up erasing half the sheet, stumbling along. It becomes more of a chore than a joy. I still think of standardized tests whenever I see a #2 pencil
How about a pen? Ball point? OK, that’s a step in the right direction because at lease there is a sense of permanence now. No more ever-present “ctrl-z” enabling my lack of focus. And, if I had stopped there, I could have gone my entire life without knowing what “flex” is. I could have continued on, paying attention to the words spilling out of the ball point, and would have been just fine. But it felt like something was still missing. I was writing a lot, 2 to 3 hours a day and my hand was aching for a better pen.
I did my research and the McGyvver in me decided that the Montblanc/G2 hack was the best option. Of course I went for the special metal body edition, I couldn’t believe that I spent over $10 for a pen! (little did I know I had already gone down the rabbit hole) But I figured, if I’m going to be writing for long periods of time, a pen is pretty important, it’s my running shoes. If I ran several hours a day I would eventually get new shoes, if I were a professional cook then I would buy a nice knife.
A google search later and I had found an interview with Stephen King and this mysterious thing called a “Waterman” which, according to King, is the “world’s greatest word-processor.” Then I ended up at the Fountain Pen Network and the rest was history.
So you want a nice pen? Take your time and take your pick. Do some research. Think about inks, pen colors, fill systems, nib size, flex…! There is a lot out there, and you don’t ever need to know any of this stuff, just head on over to a forum (pst! fountainpenforum.com) and take a peek, introduce yourself, if you are looking for a warm community and some good advice–first being to run away before it’s too late–you’ll find it there.
Whatever you end up chosing, just write something, in pen and play with the words.
Until later, I’ll be binding,