We all want that perfect pen. The pen that will not only set us apart, but also will provide for our daily needs of writing, scribbling or drawing. But where to start? The plethora of offerings, the time and distance involved with some of our “dream pens” (not only distance in terms of kilometers but distance in terms of budget as well!) all play together to always push our minds to the edge of frenzy in what to choose and what t buy next. Most of us who have not chosen usually have big collections, with most pens on the arsenal ranking to okay and not bad and some near sucky.
But rarely do people with really big collections will say they have a pen that does it all, the ultimate writing instrument that not only caters to your aesthetics but your functional needs as well, regardless of the time of day, regardless of occasion, and regardless of your mood.
This pitfall is very soon realized by the beginner pen enthusiast, they are apt to choose or buy something based on looks. God forbid that the person who gets the “Fountain Pen bug” be moneyed and all, for they will practically buy everything up in sight, regardless of cost, just to say that “I have it – are you jealous?” , you know what I mean.
But apart from this vanity function and elitist element (by the way I have been called an elitist douche by a reader from India due to my statements in a previous article titled “Why I Write with a Fountain Pen”), in fact why would you buy something so that you will be lower than the next guy? Don’t you buy something so that you will be a bit above everyone else? The question however remains on how to really choose the right pen for the right reasons. Here are a few thoughts on the matter:
Definitely a big factor in the decision making process. To make it easier, put your ability to purchase a good pen into a range, like USD 10 to 30, USD 20 to 50, etc and see where you belong. If you belong to say the USD50 to USD70 range, do not lose sleep over pens that cost USD 900 or more you will just get a headache.
Take this into account very seriously. Most people want to write with an FP because it looks cool, and it does look cool. But if you are going to make that jump into buying and using a decent FP (which will start at the USD 45 range) then do make an effort to keep to it. Many people tend to write for a few days with fairly expensive pens and then they lose heart or get bored. An FP is for a writer, or someone who loves to write, so make sure you are in this category. If not, I and others like me will be waiting for your very cheap listings for your pen in Craig’s List or Facebook, or eBay.
There are ancillary costs to consider, you may need to buy journals or special papers for your pen and also specialty inks depending on your taste. A very good cost to consider, especially if you have been bitten by the FP bug really hard, is the cost in time. You will be spending a lot of time looking and playing with your new found toy and also will be busy looking over reviews, listings and promos and sales and what not. Those people that have been bitten hard by the “FP bug” before please do comment after reading this article.
Having an FP is almost like having a relationship with a pet that you have. It will entail you caring for it and looking for it like a piece of artful and loved equipment, much as you would do with anything else you love like your cellphone or even your car. You may think I am crazy but its true. Look after your FP and in time it will look after you, for FPs have a way of being discontinued in production on average in between 5 to 10 years from first year of production. So the pen you are writing with can in fact appreciate in time depending on how well you look after it. In short, it will and can be worth a lot of money in the future.