Why I Write This Blog

So I got an award! I was No 48 in the list of 75, I believe. It gives a person cause for reflection so here’s why I write this blog.

When I started trying to research British pens online there was very little there. The late Jonathan Donahaye’s wonderful Conway Stewart site was a tremendous resource but that’s about all there was. The Americans were miles ahead with very good sites on Parker, Sheaffer and Wahl Eversharp. There were a good many specialist sites and blogs that have lots of other information on American pens.

With absolutely no expertise at all, I began writing about the various pens that came across my bench. I might not know all their history or how they related to other pens but I could describe them and give my opinion of them. My intention was that anyone who had an old pen that they had never seen before would have a place where they might find a little information about it. In time, I learned a little more and my blog entries contained more information. I have written about some brands and even some models several times as my own knowledge grew.

As the years went by, other British specialist sites began to appear, Burnham, Langs and Mabie Todd among them. That meant I could do other things – discuss pen books, illustrate repairs, list basic repair tools and write general articles about the current state of pendom.

I started to look at more modern pens too, though most had to be at the cheaper end. I found some good and some very good pens that way.

Occasionally, and I try to keep it very occasionally, I let my more controversial side have its way and rant about this or that. It gets it off my chest.

One of the main reasons for the blog is that I simply love pens and I love to write, in both senses of that word. Everything you see here is prepared longhand using whichever is the pen of the day. I love the act of laying ink on paper and getting used to a pen I haven’t tried before. In the other sense, I love the linguistic process of putting an article together. In that sense, I have always written. I have to write.

13 thoughts on “Why I Write This Blog

  1. You would have thought they could give you a rosette saying top 50 pen blog if you were ranked 48th! Do you know where I can see the rest of the list? If you are 48th I would love to see the top one – it must be like a whole Steve Hull book posted in one blog if it is that much better than yours. But seriously, the only other blog I read is the Leadhead by Jonathan Veley and I feel I am missing out on pen chat now that FPB seems to have dried up. Has it all gone to Facebook? I don’t want to join Facebook!
    Keep up the good work and I will keep checking in everyday. If you are running out of things to write about, I would be happy to send you a box of interesting pens that you could gradually work through before sending them back

    1. Hi Simon,

      There is somewhere that you can see the whole list but I have to hunt it down. I had a quick look just now but I couldn’t find it. I’ll get it and put it up on the blog when I do.

      That’s a really good idea but you wouldn’t have to send me the pens. Just send me a few photographs and I can take it from there. Yes, FPB does seem to have died a death. I take it that either David is working so hard that he can’t keep it going or he’s lost interest in it. It’s a real pity because it was a tremendous venue for talking about old pens. I like Fountain Pen Geeks but it’s mostly about new stuff.

      I read Leadhead too. I’m always hoping that one of these days I’ll fully understand how some of those pencils work.

      There is quite a lot in Facebook. Actually, I’m very active in Facebook but for stuff to do with dialysis and contact with friends. I do copy every post over into Facebook but it’s secondary. This is where all the debate happens.

      Always good to hear from you.

      1. Just a quickie on FPB – if people don’t make the effort to post there, it will of course die a natural death. It’s not a blog, so it’s not really up to David to keep it going with input, especially in the British Pens forum which is not his area of interest or expertise. Only 5 topics started in there since the turn of the year (three of which were mine) and a total of just 10 replies to these topics is a pretty sorry return for what is the only internet forum freely available to British vintage pen enthusiasts for any serious discussion.

      2. That’s hardly fair, Andy. Most of the Americans who posted there have stopped too, and it was a mostly American site. Something happened there a while ago which broght the site to a grindinding halt. I don’t want to go into detail here and make matters worse.

  2. Always have to remind myself that Deb’s writing constitutes a blog, and not a forum – it’s easy to forget especially when, like some of us, we chat on places like geeks and FPN – and fingers type merrily wanting to post thoughts and ideas with which to correspond. So have to be careful.

    Simon – it’s the ‘before sending them back’ bit that seems unfortunate – couldn’t Deb keep a few πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

    Quite possible that the other 74 recipients are mostly you tube persons, who don’t have Deb’s in-depth knowledge of pens. How about a little more in the way of tutorials for pen renovation Deb?

    1. I had a quick look at the list and recognised many of the blogs. There is some good stuff in there and as I said to Simon I’ll find that list again and publish it here when I do.

      Comment all you want. That’s a large part of the blog is the discussion that we have of the posts I make. I learn a lot here.

      I will try to do some more about pen renovation when I get the time. It requires quite a bit of photography as I work obviously and at the moment, things being the way they are, I can’t really spare the time but I will when I can.

  3. I have followed and read your posts for a few years now, and have enjoyed them immensely as well as learned a great deal. It also inspired me to make a blog of my own. Heartfelt thanks for all you do.

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