When I started to actively cover the fountain pen scene on my blog I knew I was a small player in a big pond. One of the great things about our hobby is the creativity it helps to develop and this includes the number of people writing about their views and experiences but this also means there are a lot of pages being regularly updated out there. In many respects I was a year or two late with starting and at the same time I’m no The Pen Addict, The Gentleman Stationer, Well Appointed Desk or UK Fountain Pens. I struggle to post once a week and I feel my style is a tad too cold and clinical (and when ever I try something different I do not like it).
Thus with no real expectations I set out just under three years ago with my first pen related post on the 29th of October 2018 to see if it would work and if I could keep things going. The impetus behind it, as I had been procrastinating for a while, was actually the interview of Luca Baglione of Scrittura Bolognese at the launch of the ScriBo Feel at the October 2018 London Pen Show. While never planned, I was asking him questions to post on a forum (where I had said I would post my views on the pen) at the same time as Penultimate Dave (who by that stage I had known for a couple of years or more) videoed it. The actual plan was we would have a chat, then Dave (who many of you will know videos many of the UK pen shows) would video his piece. Instead we went with the flow and personally I liked the results (I can never be described as being camera shy …).
Now I must admit I hid a counter on my home page, wondering how long it would take to reach 1,000 then 10,000 hits. After that I think I stopped looking as a whole though at one point the numbers did drop as Jetpack (which is the default stats package for WordPress) was updated to provide more realistic numbers. I suspect flagged and deleted spam were removed from the count (blogs through the WordPress site also have Akismet Anti-Spam set up and running by default and it does make moderation easier).
One thing I have noticed is the choice of what I review does make a difference to the numbers. My most read posts are the ones for big name and popular pens. Alas pieces on the small pen makers seems to be viewed a lot less, though I’m still going to continue to try and cover and promote those and at the same time it is good to see from my statistics that readers are going to their web pages and web stores through the links I publish so I like to think I have helped them generate some extra business.
So to wrap this up, a big thank you to all of you for reading my reviews, musings and ramblings.
I encourage you to continue. I like having variety. I enjoy seeing small pen makers’ products. In fact, that is one of the reasons I started following your posts. Honest reviews and opinions are highly valued. Big name pens will get more views but I think that is more because of the money tied up in a big pen purchase. Please don’t abandon the small pen makers.
Congratulations on the 100,000 milestone!