A Publication Two Years in the Making!

But first, a quick mention of recently added material right here:

  • The Sheaffer Pop has been added to the page for the Sheaffer Award… because there might be some minor differences, but I can’t shake the sense that it is just a renaming;
  • An extremely elderly No. 16 S.F. has been added to the gang of crocks on the Early Watermans page;
  • An entirely new page for the old version of the Pelikan Twist. Like the Pop/Award, you’ll find several other names for essentially the same pen there.

Now, what’s that title all about, then? I’m going to save myself a little typing, and quote material already posted on my writing blog:

Let me tell you a brief true story. In the fall of 2016, I had a story accepted by a long-running publication called AE: The Canadian Science Fiction Review. This was within a fortnight of “The Third Act” being taken up by Trigger Warning, so as you can imagine I was absolutely overwhelmed by a sense of artistic achievement.

But the world does not like too much joy in it. Thus, some grudge-bearing (I assume) terrestrial tetrapod did the hacking equivalent of putting a shotgun to the back  of the head of AE‘s online facility. The site went down so soon after I sent back the edits that I thought I might have been to blame for it, and they weren’t able to even explain to the world what happened for weeks. That explanation was the beginning of a very long road to getting back online.

The return has been accomplished– a soft launch, at the moment, which I assume means “Sound the trumpets! Release the doves!” major official re-launch is in the near future… but I can’t wait for that because I’ve been waiting almost two years to say aloud that I have had a story published by AE!

Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=10907

Apparently the Mountain Will Come to Us

First, to address the previous news item here:

That is sufficient to get the hub happening, and hooray!  However, there is room for more, so if you are going to be within striking distance of here on 21 September and want to attend (and get free Pelikan stuff!), then go to this site and sign up.

To make slightly more sense of the headline, the real meat of this update is a new page on the Montblanc page (yes, Pelikan’s natural enemy, but I run a big tent), as I find myself the owner of a Montblanc 32.  This happens because that model wasn’t (very) expensive when it was new, and isn’t hugely sought after now, so the residue of a fiction sale could secure one for me.  Hooray, again.  This has also seen a small amendment to the mug shots sheet for the appropriate era.

Finally, I have made a small update to the page for the Sheaffer Tuckaway, to reflect an encounter with the Touchdown version of that tiny treat.  It provides, at very least, a direct comparison of the relative efficiencies of two of Sheaffer’s filling systems.

Did I say something about Conway-Stewarts in a recent update.  Um… well, that’s a mountain of research I have yet to successfully shift. Work continues.

Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=10872

Thumping a Tub for a Pelikan Hub

Pelikan Hubs registrations are open, and I’m giddy about it, because there is a move afoot to have a hub happen right here in my own home town, Regina.  I am, therefore, reproducing almost the entirety of a blog-entry I just posted on the topic, because why should you waste time clicking on this link to read the original when you could be clicking on THIS link to get yourself signed up?  Anyway, here it is:

Pelikan has just started registration for the 2018 version of Pelikan Hubs, which an even more Pelikan-positive person than myself explains in some depth on his own blog. In a nutshell, it’s a sponsored event for pen enthusiasts in a given area to get together and enthuse over pens.  As mentioned on The Pelikan’s Perch, it skews toward one maker’s stuff, because they’re the sponsor, but it’s also allowed to mention and even bring pens of other brands.

Pelikan’s Wand of Official Sanction (artist’s impression)

I am VERY EXCITED because there is a move afoot to bring about a hub right here in Regina; this would fill the yawning gap between the Edmonton and Winnipeg venues.  Paper Umbrella has even expressed a willingness to host the thing, which takes care of a big bunch of the planning chores.  Now, the only thing needed is… people.  There is a minimum number of people signed up for any given hub required by Pelikan before they will wave their Wand of Official Sanction over it and make it a real event, with real Pelikan stuff.

This means people like me, which is to say excited!! and already signed on, need to find others who have within them the potential to also be excited!! and have the willingness to sign on.  So, to those who live in a circle centered on Regina, Saskatchewan with a radius extending slightly past Moose Jaw, who are interested in writing instruments at all– I urge you, I plead, go to this site and let Pelikan know you are indeed one of us before 16 July.  That date is their cut-off; if we are insufficiently numerous at that time, no hub for us.

I suggest that circle because beyond that distance seems an awfully long drive. If you’re somewhat outside the circle and don’t mind the long drive, or have someone to stay with here, by all means, add your weight to our petition.

If you’re very far away from Regina (which is true for a lot of people), then sign up for one that’s more convenient to you.  Or have a go at making one that is more convenient to you.  They sound like a lot of fun!


Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=10853

Spring Cleaning

I suddenly find I have a lot updates to make.  Until I get a better grip on Conway-Stewarts both old and new, though, let’s be content with the following:

  • In my very own hands, there’s a green shadow-wave sub-deb Vacumatic which allows a small expansion of that brimming page.
  • The same dear friend also gave me an Esterbrook “Transitional” J which I very nearly decided should get its very own page, but in the end just lodged it on the existing page for the J Series.
  • A client sent along a Sheaffer Balance to be refitted for service, and I discover it’s a 5-30 model— not an old example of that particular kind, but old enough to predate the introduction of names to the Balance line.
  • I also found myself looking into the guts of someone else’s Esterbrook Deluxe SM, which is different enough from the J Series to get its own page.


Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=10838

The Clinic Came Back

Yes, once again, just in time for a long weekend when everyone is out of town… oh, dear. Well, let’s hope not, because me and my pen-sensitive fingers will be available for free massages* at Paper Umbrella, which is found at 2724 13th Avenue in Regina, which is in Saskatchewan, which is in Canada, between 11:00 am and 2:00 pm on 19 May.

*Massages available to pens only, and their parent or guardian must be present.

Things you may see applied to a pen

Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=10810

Extruding from Another Dimension!

The first item in this entry has very little to do with pens, apart from having emerged into the world from the end of one.  A story of mine, “Free Balloons for All Good Children,” had been posted on Pseudopod, one of the great names in horror podcasting (and I’m not just saying that because they were nice to me).  It’s free there, for either reading or listening to; the only cost may be some lost sleep.  I’m pretty proud of it.

Closer to home, I have some new pictures to mention.  There’s now the gold-capped version of the Pelikan P1, the V-Pen which is the everywhere-but-America version of the Pilot Varsity, and the even-more-interesting reciprocating piston variant of the Wing Sung 601.

Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=10792

A Change of Face

I have changed the theme of the site for the moment to one which is… ugly, to be frank.  However, it has the charm of allowing all the pull-down menus to work properly.  Before I explain what’s happening in that department, I will also quickly mention a new page for a jolly interesting new pen (which does not look it)– the Wing Sung 601.  There’s also been updates to the First Time Buyer Suggestions, because I realize I have some more pens that I would suggest, and a picture of a rather good Sheaffer J8C added to that maker’s flat tops page.

[Edit, not an hour later: Found an easier solution than I had expected.  Some of the moaning which follows is moot, and the ugly phase is now over]

Now, the tedious explanation– the last lingering effect of the Great Catastrophe is that the WordPress software  cannot see all the picture files I’ve downloaded over the years.  This is not a big deal, as I discovered to my joy, because if I know the link address for any given picture, I can still cause it to appear in the content of the page.

However, what I can’t do is set it as the banner image at the top of the page.  And it seems that the theme I had chosen, if not given a banner image to present, gets a little strange about very long drop-down menus.  This would also be not a big deal, except what people mainly come here for it the catalogue of pen models, and getting at any Waterman model, or any of the few makers below Waterman, was not easy.  Since I don’t want to put people off by making their lives difficult, I am putting them off by making the site look less appealing than it did.

The ideal cure would be to get my WordPress Media Library to take notice of all my pictures again.  However, searching for a solution seems to come up with stuff that sounds like it might have worked for WordPress 3.5 (and I’m now stuck with 4.9) or something along the lines of “Just reload the pictures.  Sure, this doubles your use of storage, but that’s not a big thing as long as there’s not too many of them.”  You may imagine the unhealthy laughter with which I greeted that advice.

While I continue to seek a real cure, what I plan to do is upload some kind of universal place-holder, along the lines of the one which has spontaneously appeared on all the pages in this theme.  This is presenting some mysterious stumbling blocks as well, which I have finally worked out how to get around while remaining mystified on the subject of “Why are you doing this to me?”  I will then have to go to each page and add a fresh banner.  Once that’s seen to, we’ll be back to the slightly more appealing look of the site.

Yes, I am slightly cranky about all this.  If only I had something less nebulous to blame than Teh Intarwebz and the looming facelessness of WordPress.Org.

Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=10767

The Patient is Ambulatory

Things are mostly back to where they should be here, which the absence of The Apocalypse Announcement on the opening page probably tipped you off to.  I still have to go through the news posts like this one and eliminate a quantity of mysteriously-appeared back-slashes (and the link-breaking they bring with them) but since all that is dated and of little interest to anyone now, I’m content to say we’re fixed (enough) and ready for people to look at again.  There’s also the matter of absolutely every header image having vanished from each page, but… trivial from the user’s perspective (I hope) and proving to be a real bear to sort out from my side of the fence.

Of course, if you find a page that isn’t working, please do nip over to the Contact page and let me know.  There’s a LOT of pages here, and I might well miss something.

Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=10640

Minor Catastrophe

Something went wrong with my Word Press set up; anyone who has been trying to visit here since 20 February has likely been seeing a perfectly blank screen. Well… I SORT OF fixed it. I initially had a small attack of the marthambles when it looked like all the content had evaporated. This is not the case.

It’s just all been turned into slightly illegible posts.

Which means I’m going to be a while getting the site looking like something useful again. Whatever you’re looking for is still here, but it’s hiding.  The only thing I can suggest is scrolling through the news archive, because EVERYTHING is in there.  All the internal links are broken, too, including the ones to pictures, so… well, it will be a while before we’re back on our feet here.

Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=9968

Sic Semper Taranis

Well, I appear to have undone the damage done by Jerk MacJerk of Clan MacCreep, but I’m still trying to sort out the damage done by the WordPress update it required.  For example, I’ve just noticed that what used to produce a different coloured background text box now doesn’t, so there are several pages with mysterious <important> instructions now appearing in the text.  I’m sure I’ll get it sorted eventually.

On a happier note, I have several fresh pen profiles up.  One is very fresh indeed, for the fresh out of the oven Lamy Aion.  The others are not quite so warm with the heat of their own creation, but all are definitely recent models; the retrospective Kaweco Student, the psst hey buddy do you want a cheap pen Wing Sung 3008, and the get it while you can Sheaffer Taranis.

The title of this entry is almost completely without meaning, by the way.  Just me playing with allusions.


Permanent link to this article: http://dirck.delint.ca/beta/?p=9927