Thursday, February 4, 2010

Secret Confessions

I’m a pen freak. There, I’ve said it out loud. Yes, I like pens, and have an assortment of colors and styles in a pencil cup on top of my desk. I have my favorites, mostly Pilot G-2 Extra Fine gel ink pens in assorted colors. When I used to write all my stories in longhand (as recently as last year), the gel pens gave me fewer hand cramps than ballpoint pens.

Over the years I’ve dallied with an array of pens. I remember a stick pen called a Lindy, a long, no frills, no curves ballpoint pen in the 70s, I guess. I’d probably still have some—I’m a loyal sort—but they went the way of Ipana toothpaste and 45 records. If fountain pens didn’t dry out so quickly I’d use them—and for awhile, I did. But I spent more time scribbling warm-up loops or running water over dried-out pen nibs than writing.

Upon borrowing an unusual pen from a man, I oohed and aahed and mentioned that I was a pen freak. Quickly I learned that my affection for pens was of the puppy-love variety, while his was full-blown crazy love. Did you know there were pen shows (think boat shows for pen enthusiasts) in LA, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Chicago? Even Arkansas has a pen show. You can get custom made pens, replicas of “famous” pens, special pen holders, etc.

You won’t see me at a pen show. I love pens, but I love to pay my mortgage more.

What are some of your little joys, your little puppy loves in life? Or are you more like the pen freak, with huge love for something most people don’t think twice about? Let me know. I won’t think you’re weird. Unless it’s something really out there, and then all bets are off.


  1. How about real puppies? I love pencils more than pen, but I had my moments. You know what pens represent to writers, right? They represent a romantic era of poets bent on parchment paper, writing ever memorable words by the light of a candle. Nowadays, who can imagine writing "The hunchback of Notre-Dame" by longhand?

  2. OK, so you already know I have this thing about giraffes. What can I say? The animals prove that God has a sense of humor, but at the same time, He created them with a grace and power that they rarely draw on against an enemy. They are the watchers on the African plains giving the first warning of danger to the other animals due to their keen sense. Add their extreme height, and you have a living guard tower. How cool is that!

    So, I collect images of them: jewelry, statues, paintings, etc. But I have to admit I'm a snob. If I don't feel that the giraffe image is flattering to the giraffe, I'm not really interested in owning it.

    PS I really like pens, too. When I find one that writes with a smooth, flowing line, I guard it like it was the crown jewels.

  3. I have too many things I like, and I move back and forth between them. As far as pens go, I did learn that some of the pages I have to sign when signing my books will bleed if I use anything but a ballpoint. Consequently I mainly try to find good ballpoints. So far, the best I've found is Zebra. I had 3 and am down to only one now. Don't know what's happened to the others. It does have refills, which is nice.

  4. Delia--Good to know! I'll find a Zebra pen and keep it at the ready for those sure-to-happen autograph parties!

    Ever hopeful,