Issue#15 Don't lose track of the enjoyment...

SBRE Brown, holding on, and letting go

Issue 15 | 20 August 2023

Many issues ago, I wrote about the grail pen and what it means to me. In a recent video, Stephen Brown talks about grail pens and made a couple of points I found interesting. Well - he made a bunch of interesting points, and you should go watch his video (less than 10 minutes). But one single point struck me in particular. As he rounds off his grail pen exploration, he says “Don’t lose track of the enjoyment of what you already own.” This hits home and it hits home hard. I am not a fountain pen collector - I like to have pens that I use, and like to use the pens that I have. Any pen that sits for more than a year without seeing any use usually finds its way out.

Very often, in many many pen groups I am part of, I see fellow fountain pen enthusiasts engaging enthusiastically in serial acquisition of the latest shiny thing. Whether it is the TWSBI Ecos (Heat and Persian Green and Indigo Blue and Bronze and others of their ilk), the Lamy Safaris (the annual LEs, the country specials and the shop exclusives), the Kaweco Sports (the myriad colours, the LEs) or the latest and greatest releases from Jinhao, Asvine or Majohn - there is always a flurry of activity on the best way to get the most number. Granted there is way more lightning and thunder than actual rain, but the focus always seems to be on acquisition. A preciously small amount of the interactions are on the actual use of our writing instruments, and a miniscule little is on the sharing of the output from them.

So when I heard Stephen urging us not to lose track of the enjoyment of what we already have, I looked back at my own enjoyment of the hobby, and realised there were many times when I have been guilty of that. Ignoring the delights of my pen folder, I have awaited yet another arrival with hardly-contained excitement. Not using 90% of the pens I own, I have made plans to track and buy the flavour of the week, the month, the year. If you have been reading this newsletter over the past couple of issues, you will know that i am in the midst of cutting down on my collection of pens and trying to bring it down to a manageable level. The motivating force behind it is the desire to actually enjoy all the beautiful pens I have acquired with glee, but not used with a fraction of the joy with which I had tracked them down. While there are a couple of exceptions, this is the fate of most of my pens.

As with many other things, slowing down and truly using what you have has given me dividend far beyond what I would have imagined I would get. Stopping and using the pens I have in a more mindful manner has led me to write more and derive way more enjoyment out of the pens I own. Perhaps it was for this reason that the words resonated so much with me!

FP Doodles

Nandini Ramchandran | Instagram

Everyday FPness

Well, this isn’t really everyday FP stuff, but this is what I did related to FPs this past week. I sold a couple of pens I haven’t used in a while. What really surprised me was how easy it was for me to let go. Both were pens I had bought after a lot of considering and wanting, and both were pens I immensely enjoyed writing with. However, as I got other pens, these went into a folder and never saw use again.

Contrary to what I might have expected, I feel relief rather than loss at the departure of these two pens - that they have gone on to places where they have a chance to be used more than they are currently. This has also greatly spurred me on to continue the journey as I look at cutting down on the pens I own.


While I have been cutting down on the pens I own, I have been also drooling over a few pens that I’ve come across. The absolute top one that has caught my attention is the Limited Edition Visconti Opera Master Firestorm. This one is as out of reach as it is gorgeous!

Other things that have me coveting them this week are the San Francisco pen show special ink and the TWSBI Eco Heat and Persian Green.

But, I am in a non-acquisition phase right now and that means I can see, but not buy!

Style and Shoot

One of the most visually stunning pens I have ever owned is this TWSBI VAC700R Iris. It is way more impressive to see in person than even in this styled and shot image!

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That’s all from me this week.

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