As someone who loves writing with analog tools, I have always switched willy nilly between pens, pencils, notebooks, types of paper, etc. I never seemed to find any consistent patterns. The past year has, finally, found me settling on a pretty stable set of writing tools.

It goes like this:

For day-to-day note taking, I use a pencil. Go figure, right? I tried using the Blackwings, which are wildly popular with the fancy pencil set. They write well enough, but they’re too long and no one talks about the elephant in the room; that big, clumsy, eraser with the sharp metal bits. They look funny and feel icky, so I switched to something I have grown to love - the Mitsu-bishi Hi-uni and 9850 pencils. They write at least as well as the Blackwings, cost less, and hold a point better.

For my daily updates in the Hobonichi Techo, I’m still in love with the Staedtler Pigment Liners. The fine, black, crisp line works great on the small pages of Tomoe River paper.

And for anything “fancy” like letters, postcards, or long-form journaling, I have settled on two fountain pens; The TWSBI Diamond 580 and the Pelikan M400.

I’m pretty happy with these choices. It’s been months since I’ve struggled with deciding what to write with.