I’ve mentioned my fountain pens several times recently in various places and have been asked more about them. I am not a true collector. True collectors know more about them, and generally have pens that cost much more than mine.
This would be an easy thing to get addicted to with pens that look like this dragon pen that was rereleased to celebrate what would have been Bruce Lee’s 70th birthday. “Prices for “The Dragon 2010 Bruce Lee” limited edition series range from $4,675 to $102,200 with the ultra-rare, three-piece set retailing at $290,550.” Montegrappa makes some pretty pens.
Here is a roller ball pen–Montegrappa Chaos Limited Edition 18K Gold Rollerball Pen–you can buy on Amazon. Seriously, click that link and go buy it. I am not sure, but I might get a tiny percentage of the sale. I think it’s a worthy experience.
At a mere $69,350.00, what the heck. Go ahead and buy two.
I’ll just wait here while you all go buy one and I’ll let you know later if it worked!
Now, for those of us who are stingy-guts (my late mother-in-law’s term for thrifty people, of which she was one), I offer my pen, the Lamy Safari.
Compared to your Office Depot Bic, it’s expensive. Compared to even the more reasonably priced fountain pens, it’s a bargain. Especially so because it writes really well. I use the EF [extra fine] nib because I have a messy scrawl that is hard to read, and the thicker the line, the harder it is. I was actually quite pleased to read that advice when I first started investigating fountain pen nibs, because I’d never made that connection before. The bolder the stroke, the more careful I’d have to be to write legibly.
Whether you want something like this fun yellow:
or something more classic like this CHARCOAL:
I recommend the Lamy Safari for a pen from just under $20 to around $30, depending on where you buy it and what color you get. I have linked to Amazon Prime links for those of you who wouldn’t have to pay postage. When I’ve chosen colors where I couldn’t use Amazon Prime I bought from Daly’s Pen Shop. At that time they had the best prices and were great to work with, though it has been a few years.
While we’re at it, you can use these as cartridge pens and just put a new cartridge in every time you need to. This is certainly the easiest way to do it, but also the most expensive. I buy the cartridges so that I can refill with ink myself and choose my own colors. Messier, but fun. I like choosing colors.
Note: For blood red marking on my editing work [for myself] I prefer Noodler’s Red. I tried other shades but this one is deep, bright and bloody.
Hey, I have to make it fun or editing would be way too much like work. [Okay, it’s work, bloody work. Which is why I choose red. That, and to get in touch with my inner Snape, who would be ruthless when editing.]
If you’ve never used a fountain pen, here is what you need to know. When you get it, sit down with a piece of paper and write a page or two to break the pen in. Copy something straight out of a book if you want. I’ve done that before just so I don’t have to actually think while I’m doing it. That generally will break the nib in so it writes as smooth as possible, though the more you use it, the smoother it will get. The Lamy Safari was recommended to me because it has a smooth-writing nib for the price, and I’d have to agree. For awhile I did get into collecting some inexpensive but pretty pens that were imported from various places known for inexpensive stuff. And though some were very pretty, I just couldn’t bring myself to use them that often because they were scratchy to write with and that bothered me.
Do you use fountain pens? Do you remember using fountain pens? Or do you look at a fountain pen like I would look at a quill and think, holy cow, somebody still uses those things?
Update on Open Letter to Amazon coming Tuesday. A few interesting things to report. And for the record, as I said before, I like Amazon. I use Amazon. I think the fact that they make it so easy for the ‘little guys’ to sell things through their site, and easy for customers like me to find the ‘little guys,’ puts them light-years ahead of WalMart and others who sell cheap and make it a point to put all their competition out of business. I understand if you disagree.