Something’s Coming, Something Good


There are a lot of fun stages of pen ownership, but the most conflicted must be “waiting for a new pen.” It’s the best of times (excitement) and the worst of times (impatience).

I decided at the pen show that my big purchase wouldn’t be a pen there, but would be the Aurora Optima Monviso due out in June.  With the factory stub, for a change from my usual fines and mediums.

It’s June, and the Monviso is already out. I’ve seen other owners’ photos all over Instagram. But the stub nibs are taking longer, because Aurora had to make those. Despite my impatience, that seems worth waiting for.

Now I’ve gotten word that the pen is here, in the US, and the distributor Kenro is mailing it today to my pusherman (sorry, “pen dealer”). I hope to have it late next week.

By the way, I got that photo from Kenro. It’s so … masculine, isn’t it?  Just to balance things out, I promise that my Monviso will see some especially pretty inks.

Pen of the Day: Aurora Optima Burgundy Auroloide with KWZ Raspberry Ink

KWZ Raspberry ink with Aurora Optima Burgundy fountain pen

Aurora Optima Burgundy with medium nib. It took a good two weeks to kill it, but Blue Week is finally dead. All hail KWZ Raspberry.

KWZ Raspberry ink writing sample

This looks like a nice pink. Not bright or flashy, and neither sweet nor girlish. It’s the perfect antidote to an overdose of blue.

Aurora Optima Burgundy fountain pen nib with KWZ Raspberry ink

I use this lovely pen a lot. It’s part of my Red/Pink Triumvirate, together with a Pelikan Pink and Pelikan Ruby Red. The Aurora is the most dignified. And I like Aurora’s narrow sort of medium nib.

Fountain Pen Favorites for May 2016

calendar image

May is always beautiful here and has always been my favorite month. This past week has been especially lovely in the garden, which is suffused with the lemony scent of older roses in bloom. And, yes, there have been pens and inks. Here were my favorites for May.

1. Pelikan M205 Transparent Blue. So you know how sometimes when you really look forward to something, it turns out to be a little disappointing once you actually have it? Well, that didn’t happen with the M205 Blue. I like it even more in person. Oh sure, the nib will never be for me, and the pen’s a little skimpy. But it’s such a pretty blue, and if it were perfect I’d only have to get rid of all my other pens anyway. Win-win, I’d say.

2.Boxing Out. May brought the best box for my Aurora Optimas ever. Not only does that gorgeous thing cradle the little fellows in plush comfort. Not only does it have ten (10!) empty slots that eventually I get to fill. But it also means my Aurora Optimas aren’t in the regular pen case any more, creating the erroneous but deeply satisfying impression that “I haven’t got that many pens after all.”

3. New Pen Evaluation Process. I have finally come up with a workable three-step system to analyze and evaluate matters when I want a new pen. It goes like this: (1) Don’t. (2) Don’t. (3) Don’t.

So far so good.



Photo by Dafne Cholet, Flickr, used under Creative Commons license.

Aurora Optimas: What Do We Say to the God of Fountain Pen Problems? Not Today.

Aurora Optima fountain pens in box

Well, Fountain Pen Follies did not enjoy a great start to the week, what with finding yucky stuff in some ink. However, let’s put that drear aside. Fountain pens are supposed to be fun. And here’s what I got yesterday from a very nice friend: this fantastic Aurora box.

Look at that gorgeous thing. Even the sun is happy to see it.

The box is wood on the outside and soft fabric on the inside. It’s like a luxury hotel room for fountain pens. And here are my Optimas, all moved in.

Aurora Optima fountain pens

From left to right, that’s the 365, the Sole, the Emerald Green Auroloide, the Blue Auroloide with gold, the Demonstrator with chrome, the Demonstrator with red, the Burgundy Auroloide, the Nero Perla and the Blue Auroloide with chrome.

I am waiting for the Monviso, which should come out in a few weeks.

And after that, I’ll still have ten spots to fill. It’s going to be fun. So check back in ten years.  Just calendar that in now.

So I May Have a Problem (cough)

blue fountain pens with chrome trim

Sometimes a new pen purchase triggers … well, not a look in the mirror, exactly, but a furtive peek into the pen case.

Is it possible that I like blue and chrome pens a little too much?

You know, I’m going to go with “no.”  That is unpossible.

Don’t think twice, it’s alright.

Blue fountain pens with chrome trim

Pen of the Day: Aurora Optima Blue Auroloide

Aurora Optima fountain pen blue and gold

Aurora Optima Blue/Gold with broad nib. We’re having a strange spring here. The weather seems like it’s been either cold and snowy or 68 degrees and sunny.  Except when it’s been both over the course of a single day.  Which, okay, I totally enjoy.

Yesterday, however, was just gray, with a few snowflakes. I’m not usually a fan of blue pens with gold trim, but on a boring day I found this beautifully warm and inviting.

Aurora Optima fountain pen blue and gold with KWZ Azure #1 ink

And I’m not a big user of broad nibs.  But this one gives blue ink extra pizzazz.

KWZ Azure #1 ink

For comparison, I used the same pen a few weeks ago with Aurora Blue.

Pen of the Day: Aurora Optima Demonstrator

Aurora Optima chrome demonstrator fountain pen

Aurora Optima demonstrator with fine nib. It is Italian Pen Week here at Fountain Pen Follies.  Actually, I have no other inked pens that haven’t already been Pens of the Day. But Italian Pen Week sounds better.  Lemons to lemonade, that’s my motto.

Aurora Optima chrome demonstrator fountain pen

There’s not much to say about this fantastic pen, except that it’s really perfect.

Aurora Optima chrome demonstrator fountain pen with Waterman Serenity Blue ink

Right now the pen contains Waterman Serenity Blue, so I could compare a standard blue ink color to KWZ Iron Gall Green Gold.  Serenity Blue is a darn good ink: well-behaved in most pens, well-behaved on most papers.  And it’s safe for this beautiful Aurora.