What makes a good pen?

What makes a good pen?

Gearing up for my first product review. I like stationery so it seems fitting that I start there. I’m not an artist per se, but I recently found adult colouring as a means to distract myself from anxiety. So I rushed in and bought a couple of different pen types to figure out what works best.

'What makes a good pen?' written in black ink on white paper in different handwriting formats
My work pen. My weird handwriting.

Here are some of the criteria I use to evaluate a pen:


There is nothing like a good looking pen. It demands your attention and calls to your hand “Use me!”


Writing pages and pages can become rough on the fingers and hands. A pen with a shape that aligns with the hand helps! And those that have those comfort grips can also improve the feel in hand.


A pen that leaks ink ~ forms that bubble of ink at the nib ~ and then just explodes all over the page. Another hard NO!

Nib/Tip size

I like fine tips around 0.4 – 0.8mm. Its all about finesse. The ability to do very clean detailed work, that level of control speaks to me.


I don’t want to use a pen that leaves its mark on the next page or even the back of the same page. That’s just a NO!

Dry time

No one likes smudges. It can ruin hours of work in a single stroke. So fast-drying ink helps a lot.

Gold metal pen with a squiggly line scribbled on white paper

When I started writing books, poems, stories, it was a time when computers were expensive and not an everyday household item. I wrote in A4 sized Croxley books and I have them all to this day. There is something about the physical act of writing that lets my creativity flow.

I have an appreciation for handwritten notes and cards. I suppose that makes me a sentimental “oldie” and that’s ok.

4 Replies to “What makes a good pen?”

  1. I am a black ink only person myself. There is something about blue ink that really bothers me. Red is right out unless it is for making corrections. A nice free flowing black ink pen is one of the best things in life as far as I am concerned.

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