Parker Jotter

The modern Parker Jotter fountain pen has not gotten a lot of good press. To put it mildly. At the risk of being contrarian, I'm going to have to disagree.

I adore my Parker Jotter.

Now, I have to admit to being a bit biased. This pen was a gift from my spouse and has a lot of sentimental meaning. I had been jealous of the sleek looks of the Jotter ballpoint, ubiquitously used in my graduate program, for a few years but was stubbornly refusing to buy a ballpoint. I didn't even know there was a fountain pen option until he gave it to me. I love having my own Parker Arrow to show off. Because yes, I can be that petty.

It's also so small. Other reviewers complained about this, but I have such small hands that I have to wear kids' gloves, so most fountain pens are oversized for me. This is not.

I love how the nib isn't standard.

I think the blue metal body is just stunning, absolutely classy. And it goes so well with Pilot Iroshizuku Asa-Gao. I don't often match my ink to my pens, but this is my main exception.

It does take Parker converters, rather than standard converters, which is a pain, but the converter works well. Anthony from UK Fountain Pens pointed out the odd hole in the cap. I assume it's probably an anti-choking measure. Regardless, this pen has never once hard-started or skipped, so if there's ink evaporation, it's not affecting the ink flow. I write with this pen on a daily basis, so I can't say if ink is really evaporating. If you look in the cap, the hole is below the cap sleeve, so I suspect that the nib and feed are protected.

The cap lip is very sharp, painfully so at times actually. As is the edge of the clip.

The cap is brushed, so any nicks won't be immediately apparent. The finish of the body has held up well now for several months, despite me throwing this pen in bags sans pen sleeves.

As for writing experience - I love writing with this pen. It's my go-to note-taking pen because it caps and uncaps easily and doesn't dry out even when I leave it uncapped for minutes at a time. The ink flow is not the best, I have to confess. I initially inked it with Diamine Oxford Blue, my favorite ink, and this pen made that ink look more washed out than I thought possible. I don't remember, but I probably flossed the tines and smoothed the nib a little. But what made all the difference was putting in an Iroshizuku ink. I've consistently found that Iroshizuku inks can fix most nib problems. Important to remember the trifecta!

So, value?

Personally, I would have paid even more for this pen. That being said, I'm probably alone in that. Entirely alone, most likely.

Yes, the Jotter is up against stiff competition in the beginner price point. When I give people first pen recommendations, which I do on a regular basis, I never mention the Jotter. But I don't think that means the pen shouldn't exist. Rather I think it's a rather unique pen that will suit some people much more than others. If you want a small, slim, non-vintage fountain pen, there just aren't that many options, at least not that I'm aware of.