Phantom of the Pen

Phantom of the Pen

-by Lori Moritz

Writing tools are important.

Consider the tools above: a pen, a pen case, ink, and a Carnival of Venice Mask.

Why are these important?

The Pen

There is nothing like writing by hand. It creates a mental time warp that slows thought down to perfect narrative speed. It buffers the mind enough to imbue language with passion, something I can’t get while typing at ludicrous speed illuminated by nothing but the milky backlight of a computer screen.

Writing instruments are personal. I prefer fountain pens that are heavy. I can’t hold a pen like that; I must wield it. Fountain pens glide over the paper and magically make their mark independent from pressure or force. I can write for a long time riding the inertia and momentum of such a pen. The only trick is getting up enough force to start. (ahem) I also love how such pens vibrate in response to the texture of the paper. Point is: the correct writing tool will inspire you. Find the pen, the color, and the notebook! (the only thing missing in my photo…) that you LOVE. And write in it. Write stupid things. Write smart things. Write secrets and write puns. Test out a few until you find a favorite, and then incorporate your pen into your writing routine. Computer work is fine, but every writer needs to write a little by hand.

The Pen Case:

Simple. A wonderful pen must be protected from would be pen fiddlers. The case is the solution.


The right color and consistency is a key partner to your pen.

Not Pictured Here Paper:

Make sure you get paper that doesn’t bleed. You should enjoy the texture of it. Try a few in various notebooks.

Carnival of Venice Mask:

If it makes you feel like part of the Eyes Wide Shut Cast, then it has enough weird factor to wear daily. Try putting one on to accent your normal ‘going to the store to buy groceries’ routine. Note the responses you get. It will give you material with just enough kick to rev up the writer engines for when you get home.

How could you not write about that?

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