As many of you know, I started out in this whole shabang by making pens. Well, I’ve since had to put that by the wayside. I’m focusing intently on paper and ink now. However, as I’m retailing ink for names like Pelikan, Sheaffer, Caran d’Ache, and undoubtedly other brands down the road that also make pens, I’ve been wondering if I should carry more fountain pens.
Right now I only have the cheap-o Pelikan pens, Pelikanos, Pelikano Jr.s and Scripts. I only carry them really because I like them myself and use them every day. They’re cheap enough to buy a whole bunch of them for other ink addicts like myself to have a dozen or two different pens inked up with all different colors at once to change colors as the mood strikes.
I get requests all the time for ink and paper special orders, but I honestly have never had one request to get a fountain pen for someone (other than a Goulet pen, which ain’t gonna happen). Why is this? I don’t know for sure, but I suspect it’s because pen sellers out there are a dime a dozen…it seems no matter what kind of pen I look up, someone else has it at some insanely low price. Price wars are a very good indicator that there are too many sellers in the market, without enough means to differentiate each other except on price.
I have have pens on the mind lately….I’m quite torn. I have so much I want to do with the paper and ink side of things….I have my ink swabs going on (which I’m currently editing, cropping, and working on loading all 340+ of them for your enjoyment), future ink reviews, etc. I can see myself being a connoisseur of ink…..but what about pens? It seems all the big pen sellers out there focus on them, and paper and ink is an afterthought. It begs the question, is it too much to focus on both fountain pens and the fountain pen paraphernalia market?
The last thing I want to do is spread myself too thin….I don’t plan to get into fountain pens in any sort of regular capacity until I have the paper and ink side of things totally nailed down (if that’s even ever possible, there are so many options!). Perhaps getting into pens will never actually happen for me, but much like anything I do, I want to know your thoughts. I go where the people are, and if there is no one calling me to get into pens, I won’t go there. You can bet though, that I am going to get much, much deeper in to paper and ink before I do anything else…