Pilot Frixion Eraseable Pens Review

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This is the 24 pen set from Jetpens, they are the Pilot Frixion Pens, that are not yet available in the US, but they should be. They are a bit pricy at $50 a set, but there is a bunch of ink in each, so they should last a good long while. I bought them about 7 months ago and I have been using them regularly since, and they are still going strong.

The colors are great, they are more pastel than bold, and the colors show up very well. They write wet, but surprisingly they do not bleed through no matter how thin the paper ( I have tested them even on thin rice paper) which makes them great for lots of things.

Naturally they erase well, and can be written over many times. I also have the highlighter version, and they are just as usefull, it’s good to be able to highlight and be able to erase it again if I choose the wrong color…

-Ezra

Of Pens And The Subconscious.

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Several years ago, I purchased a yellow Lamy Safari with an EF nib. I used it constantly, and carried it with me just about everywhere. I would fill out my paperwork at work with it, and use it on my Moleskine.
In any case, it went missing last spring, and I had to switch to another daily pen. I missed it, but kept hoping to find it, and so I never replaced it..

Fast forward to last week: I was cleaning out my closet and found a sweatshirt that I hadn’t worn in a while, so I decided to wear it that day. I had it on when I suddenly thought about my missing pen, and decided to order a replacement. I went on Jetpens, and ordered a white Lamy to replace my lost yellow one.

Didn’t think a thing about it until that evening when I went to take the shirt off, and guess what I found in the pocket? My missing yellow pen.

I have been wondering since: if my subconscious was trying to tell me that my pen was in that sweatshirt, and I misunderstood and just took it as a chance to replace it? I mean somewhere deep in my brain I must have known that I left the pen in the pocket, and so that bubbled up into my consciousness somehow….

In any case, I decided to not cancel the order since I really will lose the pen again at some point, and the white looks so good on my iPad after all……..

-Ezra

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Ode To The Composition Book

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The lowly school composition book, the simple tool that has been used by so many.

A few days ago I picked up a $1 marbled composition book to record the progress of a current project, and upon picking it up, I was flooded with memories, it brought me back to my school days.
That black and white marbled cover and familiar size, the single signature of pages, and the cheap, but sturdy construction is unchanged in the 15 years since I last held one.

I have been into the whole ‘Moleskine thing’ for about 7 or 8 years now, and have looked down on the cheaper notebooks as inferior, but perhaps that is just pride, after all it is what is inside that counts.

I chose this one specifically because it was cheap, I wanted to use it to record notes on a messy experiment, and knew it would get wet, and smudged, so I didn’t want to put one of my precious Moles through that, but I wonder if that desire to keep my notes clear and clean and precise is a downfall?
When I first started to use the Moleskines, I only had one size: the pocket size, and I carried it with me everywhere. I put it in my back pocket, and sat on it, I had it with me every day I was working in dirty wet conditions, and the edges would get wet, and the ink would run. Just about the time I filled one up, it would start to come apart. Those first 3 or 4 Moleskines are ragged and torn, the covers are stuck on with gorilla tape, and the markers are frayed.

Now I have a bit more sedate life, and more of a clean work environment, I also don’t carry my moles in my pocket, but rather in my bag (which is always with me) and so they are in much better shape when I am done with them.
Conversely, I don’t use them as much; having them closer to my hand makes me more likely to use them in the few moments I have standing in line, than if I have to unzip my bag, and then open my pen case. Now I tend to use my notebooks for longer stretches, but the tendency to just fill them with instant inspiration is gone.
Now when I am waiting in line, I reach for my iPhone instead.

These lowly composition books are really jewels in a way that Moleskines can never be. Because they are cheap and readily available, the bar is set low, and there is no hesitation to use them.
I won’t stop using my Moleskines, as they are a wonderful tool that I have grown quote attached to, but I intend to get a few more of these ordinary cheap little books, and I intend to use them.

-Ezra Hilyer

The Amateur Writers Guild

 

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On a whim; I went searching for traces of my old website ‘The Amateur Writers Guild’.

Keep in mind, that is has been about 10 years since I last visited the site, and I assumed that it was long gone. But thanks to the Internet archive site archive.org I was able to go back in time and see some of it as it was in 1999, and 2000 (the height of its popularity) and was even able to find an old logo from that era (not my final revision to be sure) I put it at the top of this post. This was at a special time in the history of the Internet, (when I started the site in 1996) where it seemed that users were starved for content, and there really were not that many sites online. I had tons of interest, and had submissions all the time.

I should have been better at keeping up the site over the years, but after about 3 or 4 years, I let it die, and everyone just faded away. I went to the URL (it was hosted on a free host, as I was a poor kid) and it is still there. There is really nothing other than the entrance page left, but oddly it is at the top of the Google search for the title of the site (even though there are others with the same name) This makes me desire to re-start the venture, ( with a new name perhaps) and get it back on its feet again. I have the experience, and the know-how, I just don’t know if I have the time.. Last: here are a few category buttons from the old site:

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This is VERY Web 1.0!

-Ezra Hilyer