For years my favorite pen has been a Uniball Signo DX in .38mm. I have it in a rainbow of colors and it’s glorious. It’s precise, doesn’t smear, and doesn’t do that annoying blob of ink thing some pens do. Here’s an example of writing long-form with it. Ignore my chicken-scratch handwriting and the rough draft nature of the content. :)
But, in a case of putting the cart waaaaay before the horse, I decided maybe I should start thinking about a pen that would also be good for signing books. After all, it’s only nine-ish months until Polaris Rising comes out, barring any schedule changes, and at least one of my friends will want their book signed, right? Right? Hello?
And possibly because I like nothing more than procrastination. :)
So I set out on a quest to find the perfect pen. It’s more difficult than you’d think. I wanted a pen that flowed nicely across the page without flowing so nicely that it made a inky mess. A fun ink color like purple would be ideal and the ink needed to dry quickly. And most importantly, the pen had to feel good in the hand.
Behold my top contenders. Oh yeah, there were more than this. I don’t do quests halfway, friends. I am an Olympic gold medal procrastinator.
Overall, I liked the .5mm pens more than the .7mm. The ink flowed a little too freely in .7, which made them a dream to write with, but it also made my handwriting even more difficult to read.
The PaperMate InkJoy gel and the Pentel EnerGel were very, very close. I liked the purple of the InkJoy better (it’s subtler), so that edged it ahead. Unfortunately, that purple in .5mm is only available in a multi-pen pack with other colors that are not purple, and I don’t need more pens. Boo!
For the pen body, I bought an EnerGel Style, a nicely weighted metal pen which the internet seems to think doesn’t exist. Staples, where I bought it, doesn’t list it on their site, and neither does Pentel. Come on, people. Jetpens has the Philography edition, which is a more expensive version of the same body with smaller .5mm ink.
The pen body accepts InkJoy ink as well as Uniball refills, so I swapped in the purple .7 InkJoy ink until I decide what to do about acquiring the .5. For now, all of my notes are very bold and slightly hard to read. But it sure feels nice while writing them. :)
Note: I linked to pens that were close to what I bought, but I recommend a trip to your local office supply store. Because who doesn’t love office supplies?