About “The Wet Pen”

Hello. I’m Matthew. If you’re here at the “About” page, maybe it’s because you found yourself wondering: The Wet Pen? What kind of a weird name is that?” And you’re looking for some answers.

The fact is that I have been obsessively collecting inks and pens over the past few years. Apparently this is a hobby for a lot of people, but I don’t really need another hobby. I just get a lot of joy out of new inks and the feel of a line going down on paper from a fountain pen.

The “Wet” part of the site name comes from the fact that I live in the Pacific Northwest (Seattle), and the endless rain and cloudy weather seems to make everything wet sooner or later. So, there’s that, in addition to the obvious fact that fountain pens often have wet nibs… it seemed like a good fit.

I actually got my very first fountain pen in 1992, while I was an exchange student in Austria, where writing with fountain pens in school was (and probably still is) the norm. It was my first extended stay outside of the USA, so I was keeping a journal every day. Well, most days. My friend Katrina gave me “The Boat Pen” (that’s a story for another day), which I used faithfully for a year and a half, until I lost it in a cheap motel in Hollywood. But I’ve used fountain pens ever since.

But I didn’t really get obsessed until a few years ago. Actually, it was 2012. I had gone without a fountain pen for a while (I wasn’t doing much writing, either), and then I bought a “Cross Bailey” pen at a Staples near my temporary home in Florida. At that time in my life I felt the need to write, and a good pen makes the task much more enjoyable. And then I started with inks. And then I tried a couple more pens. And I started buying journals, again.

And that led me to where I am today. I have dozens of bottles of ink. I don’t “journal” in the modern sense (like the way that people “scrapbook”), but I do write and I draw. I’ve learned a bit more about pens and inks than I had intended. In the process, I’ve run across a variety of websites dedicated to inks that I’ve found very helpful in evaluating inks, so I thought that I’d make my own findings public, too. Maybe someone will find them handy.

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