Auctions and Pens and things to do

Good morning world!

It’s been a really great month for fundraising.  You all have helped  raise about $1,482 and some change through the pen auctions and your purchases of notebooks and postcards, and generous donations.  There’s more coming in as people pay for the pens they won in the auctions.  So far we have $13,467 in the bank!

Speaking of the auction – I’m not really happy with how the software is working.  Winners are getting dozens and dozens of notifications telling them they won.  There’s no option to turn this off that I can see.  I’m going to look for different auction software, but if I can’t find anything we’ll try something else.  Keep your eyes open over the next couple of days when I make that decision with a load of new auctions going up.

Every month to say thanks for all the support we give away a credit towards any custom pen (or pen in our inventory), and this month, out of 37 entries, number 5 won.  Congrats Chad V!  I’ll send you an email soon.

I also want to try to make ordering notebooks and postcards simpler as well – so I’m going to work on that too when I have time.

Alright, I need to get back to work.  Those pens don’t make themselves.  🙂
Thanks!

Fountain Pen Day sale – Brush pens

Hi Everybody!

Don’t forget I have a 10% off sale going right now for Fountain Pen Day until midnight tonight.  After that all prices are as listed on the site.

https://newtonpens.com/current-inventory/

I’ve also listed the Fountain Pen Day pen from Krusac Pens up for auction, and you can see that here.

I’ve also just finished up a brush pen for the first time.  I’ll be experimenting with more brush pens and even making my own later on.

Price will depend on the brush we use, but these will be $275 to start.

October pen give away! Art contest! Scholarship fund update.

Hello all of you pen users and pen lovers and collectors and everything else!

It’s been another successful month raising money for the scholarship fund this October with 58 entries.  Wowza thanks!

So like every other month for the last 5 or so years (wow!) we picked a winner using random.org to pick the number – from 58 entries, #6 got picked.  Congrats to Tim F!  Thanks to everybody who participated.  We raised $1357 through paypal and $4357 from cash donations like the Fountain Pen Day and Krusac Pens contributions for the Newton Pens Scholarship Endowment fund we’ve started.  Thanks so much to everybody who’s supporting this program.  I can’t even begin to express how grateful I am to all of you for all the support you’ve shown over the years.  From $2,000 in the first year to $6,000 this last year in awarded scholarships, we’ve given away $26,000 in all.

We’re starting to run low on notebooks and postcards.  Once those are sold out we have some more great images to make new postcards with.  We’re going to do another contest for a notebook cover (just 1 this time) and something new, a t-shirt art contest.

Using https://cottonbureau.com/ we’re going to make and sell t-shirts with all profits raised going towards the Scholarship and Endowment fund.  Please go ahead and start submitting your art ideas to me at shawn@newtonpens.com and in a couple of weeks I’ll take votes from everybody on their favorite design.  The winner will get made into a t-shirt!  Fountain pen themed art would be cool but not necessary, and include “Newton Pens Scholarships” in there, even if it’s hidden in the artwork.

If you have any questions send me an email – shawn@newtonpens.com

Thanks!

 

Pen World article about Fountain Pen Day and…

From a kernel of an idea in 2012, Fountain Pen Day is now a
full-blown event. This year’s celebration takes place on Friday,
November 3 (Fountain Pen Day always takes place on the first
Friday in November).
Cary Yeager, marketing coordinator and sales representative at
Kenro Industries, has run Fountain Pen Day from the beginning. “A
group of us had spoken about International Pencil Day. We’d gathered
online and asked, ‘Why isn’t there a Fountain Pen Day?’ I Googled it, and
nothing came up. That first year, we just went with it, and people really
engaged, especially the online community,” Yeager says.
Both retailers and bloggers saw the potential in Fountain Pen Day.
Retailers conduct special Fountain Pen Day sales, and bloggers spread the
word among their followers on ways individuals can participate. At
fountainpenday.org/sponsors, Yeager lists all the participating entities
and the number of years in which they’ve participated. He also credits
participating bloggers like Brad Dowdy, Leigh Reyes, Stephen Brown, and
Azizah Asgarali (see “The Gourmand behind Gourmet Pens” in this issue
for more on Asgarali).
Fountain Pen Day 2017 promises to be the biggest celebration yet.
Yeager says, “We’re gaining more and more retailers all the time. We
have over 200 retailers participating worldwide. The Ohio Pen Show is
taking place the same weekend for the next few years, at least.”
A highlight of this year is an exclusive Fountain Pen Day Legend
fountain pen designed and made by Ryan Krusac. Producing five pens a
month over the course of a year, Krusac will complete a total of 60 pieces
in either L-14 or L-16 bodies, according to the customer’s preference. The
wooden cap displays an engraved Fountain Pen Day logo on one side and
Krusac’s logo on the other, both filled with crushed turquoise. Fountain
Pen Day logo is also etched into the No. 6 stainless steel JoWo nib. A
black pen sleeve with plush turquose interior, donated by Rickshaw,
completes the package.
Customers request their edition number—from two to 60—which is
also engraved on the pen cap. Pens are priced at $425 for the L-14 and
$450 for the L-16, with $175 of the proceeds benefiting the Newton Pens
Scholarship Endowment.
Over the past five years, artisan penmaker Shawn Newton has
given away $26,000 in college scholarships. To ensure the endeavor’s
growth, Newton is attempting to raise $10,000 to fund a full-fledged
endowment. Newton says, “The idea to start an endowment is from
Thomas Hall of penucopia.com. I’m really glad everybody has been so
supportive of funding it.”
Ryan Krusac’s wife and partner, Julia, notes, “The edition will raise
$10,500 if we sell through.” The first pen in the edition will be auctioned
as part of the initiative, she explains: “The number one pen will feature
additional turquoise inlay at the top and bottom of the pen. We’re
hoping a bidding war will help us hit $11,000 for Shawn.”

Both the special edition number
one Fountain Pen Day pen and
standard pens will be on display at
the Colorado Pen Show (Oct. 6–8).
Auction for the number one pen
takes place at Newton’s website and ends on November 3 at midnight.
Further details are available at fountainpenday.com.
With this additional altruistic endeavor, Fountain Pen Day gives the
community yet another reason to celebrate. But more than anything,
Yeager urges writing enthusiasts to participate actively. “It’s so important
for people to use the day to engage others to write,” Yeager says. “Bring
your favorite fountain pen to work on Friday and get them looking. Then
spend the weekend at a nearby brick and mortar store and meet with
friends. Gather your pen club. Use the occasion to share your passion.”
For ideas on how to celebrate Fountain Pen Day and to see a list of
sponsors, visit fountainpenday.org or fpdpen.com. See Shawn Newton’s
work in this issue’s Now section. To learn more about the Newton Pens

Scholarship Endowment, visit https://newtonpens.com/newton-pens-
scholarship-endowment/. Visit fountainpenstudios.com to see Ryan Krusac’s line of writing instruments.

While artisan penmaker Shawn Newton always has handmade pens for sale, the majority of his work is custom order. So a caveat: If you’re struck by this Prospector fountain pen with its swirls and waves of purple acrylic, it might already be gone. But Newton can always make it again, customized to your specifications. Newton uses Japanese hand files for the sculpted lines of the Prospector, which is seamless and unadorned, save for the Newton Pens logo etched into the barrel. The line comes in body sizes from small to oversize, and Newton offers a slew of choices in terms of nib size, material style, grind, and even fill system. MSRP: starting at $425 newtonpens.com

 

 

Newton Pens Scholarship announcements

Hi Everybody,

First– thank you all so much.  This scholarship is only successful because of all of your contributions.  Your continued support and donations are going to high school students to help them succeed in college.

Every month we give away a pen to a randomly picked person, somebody who had either contributed to the fund or just wrote in with a cool postcard, as a way of saying thank you for the support, and this month #3, William F. was picked.  Congrats William!  I’m sending you an email now.

The Colorado Pen Show is coming up this weekend.  We’ll be driving in Thursday so I’ll be slow answering emails but will try to post lots of photos of the show to Instagram and Facebook.  If you’re planning to visit the show come by and say hi!  🙂

I’m looking forward to seeing what the future brings for the scholarship/endowment fund.  You all are the ones who have made this so successful.  Thanks.

Okay – back to work.  Email me if you have any questions.  –Shawn

The Endowment grows

Hey everybody,

So lately things have been coming together for this endowment better than I had imagined.

From FPDpen.com: “Ryan and I started talking about this idea at the 2015 Colorado Pen Show. Fast forward almost 2 years, and we came up with a plan combining my ideas with Ryan’s creativity and amazing craftsmanship. Beyond making a Fountain Pen Day pen, we wanted to create a something that would contribute to a great cause beyond our community.”

From Ryan Krusac Studios: “Fountain Pen Day is the First Friday of every November and was instituted to celebrate the world’s finest writing method and to promote the community of pen enthusiasts around the world.  This project serves to help fund a scholarship endowment established by Shawn Newton, founder and owner of Newton Pens.  Shawn is a fellow artisan pen maker who gives back to the community by awarding annual scholarships to college hopefuls who meet his and his board’s requirements. When you purchase one of these Legend L-14’s or L-16’s, $175 will be added to his endowment fund.”

Rickshaw Bags is also donating sleeves for the pens.

This is a great community collaboration that will sustain itself for years to come.

To learn more about the scholarships and endowment check out the Scholarships page here.

If you want to volunteer to read and score essays from scholarship applicants, please send me an email.

 

San Francisco Pen Show – Scholarships – Traveling

I’m not a very good blogger so I’ll just type up some of my notes from the trip, and add a few more thoughts as I think of them.  🙂  But first…

Scholarship announcements.  We’ve raised $810 through the pen auctions and sale of notebooks and postcards this month.  Thank you all so much!  This scholarship is only successful because you all participate.  And there is some good news coming very soon that should make it even more successful.  I’ll keep you posted.  😉

So like every month, it’s time to say thank you to one random person who wrote or bought in this month.  Out of 40 participants, #39 got picked.  Congrats to Morgan O!  I’ll send you an email to get the ball rolling.  🙂  Morgan gets a $225 credit towards any pen, with a free grind, and free shipping.  We’ve been giving pens away like this for nearly 5 full years now, that means almost 60 pens have been made and given away through the Newton Pens Scholarship to people who have helped to support it.  Thank you all so much for your continued support.  We couldn’t do this without you.  🙂

We also want to make a new notebook and some tee shirts eventually.  We’ll make the image selection process a contest like we did with the notebooks.  But before we make new products we want to move all of our old inventory out first.  So we’re going to make all the notebooks and postcards left $5 each, or 3 for $12.  Shipping prices remain the same.  So to support the scholarships and help put some high school kids into college, all you have to do is get some cool notebooks or postcards, and you could win a free custom pen (our way of saying thanks for the support) or you could write in for free.  Rules are all here.

San Francisco Pen Show.  So we drove out to San Fran (Redwood City) for the SF Pen Show and we had a great time.  I’m not going to put all the photos here, but you can see them if you’re interested (LOTS of photos on the road).  The drive out is beautiful.

#sanfranciscopenshow #sfpenshow2017

A post shared by Newton Pens (@newtonpens) on

Aug 22 – Drive to Tucumcari – KOA camp site.  Great views and weather.
Aug 23 – Drive to Kingman.  Beautiful drive.  Great views, some rain.  The KOA camp at Kingman not as nice with no good views from the site.
Aug 24 – Drive to Redwood City.  Surprised at the border stop to make sure we weren’t bringing any plants or fruits into California.  Hottest part of the trip so far.  Gas stupid expensive in Needles, CA.  Smoggy drive through the Central Valley, which I didn’t expect at all.  Weird not being able to see the horizon or mountains.  Arrived at Pullman Hotel.  Under construction and some sort of labor dispute going on?  I don’t know.  A few people called it janky, but I thought it was fine.  I love that word though.  🙂
Driving around was a lot easier than I expected.  People were nice in traffic, we never got cussed, nobody gave us any hand signs, people let us in and out as nice as you could want.  That seemed to surprise everybody I told.  Maybe we just got lucky.  🙂
Aug 25 – Show Day 1 – Busy from the start.  Bad hotel burger.  Dinner at Los Moreno Taqueria which was really great.  Late night drive down 92 to CA-1 to see the coast.  It was dark but we stuck our toes in the ocean.
Aug 26 – Show Day 2 – Another busy day.  Awesome lunch Elizabeth pick up from Nob Hill grocery store up the road.  That place had great food ready to go.  We met two couples from Arkansas.  Small world!  Tonight we tried something new and I think it was a great success.  We had rotating group round table discussions.  I was at one table, and there were other pen folks at other tables discussing vintage pens, doodling, expensive pens, pencils, paper, and anything else you could think of  Every 10 or so minutes somebody would whistle and they’d all rotate.  I’d talk about myself and Elizabeth, how she got me into fountain pens, my pens, our scholarships, and answer any questions to each group that came by.  I hope this or something like this continues at more pen shows.  It was a great way to meet a lot of people, and for a lot of people to get educated on all sorts of subjects.
Dinner at Amici’s Pizza.  Back to the hotel to hang out by the fountain and talk with other pen people from the show.  So many cool people at this show.  We had a really great time.
Aug 27 – Show Day 3 – Sundays are always slowest.  This was the busiest day for scholarship materials though.  Talking about this at the round table meeting the night before got a lot of people interested and I think all of them came by to see what we had.  🙂
5PM – Bye!  We’re off to the city!  Drove down 92 to CA-1 (thanks to Bruno Corsini’s recommendation to avoid the 101).  What a beautiful drive.  We got to visit the coast and SEE it.  The drive through San Fran was great.  The Piers and bridges are awesome to see in person.  We walked around Fisherman’s Wharf until it got dark and headed back.  I still say San Fran was one of the easiest cities to drive in.  Easier than Chicago, Dallas, and Miami by a long shot.
Aug 28 – Drive to Kingman.  We stopped at a couple of fruit stands on our way out of Redwood City.  Great cherries and apricots.  Weather in Kingman was WINDY and rainy.  Glad our tent didn’t blow away.  We stayed nice and dry.  I love that thing.
Aug 29 – Drive to Tucumcari.  Breakfast at Calico’s in Kingman on Rt 66.  Very good.  Big rain in Albuquerque.  We upgraded our tent site to a travel trailer so we wouldn’t have to set up in the rain.  It didn’t rain on us but it was still nice not having to set up.  🙂
And oh man – Google maps is terrible.  I don’t know what they did but every time we went anywhere it would take us 7 miles out of the way to where we were going.  Waze is way better but my phone is old and slow and kept locking up.  Pizza Hut for dinner.
Aug 30 – Heading home!  Breakfast at Denny’s.  Those strawberry cream pancakes are delicious.  Great drive.  So glad to be back in Arkansas.  Prettiest place in the country with the best smelling air.  🙂

Lots of podcasts to pass the time during 6 days on the road.  Lots of comedy, some science, and a little audio book.

Until next time!  🙂

San Francisco Pen Show

Hi Pen People!

We’ll be heading out of town tomorrow morning for the San Francisco Pen Show, August 25-27.  I’ll be slow to answer emails for the most part, but I’ll try to get a few minutes here and there for replies.

Elizabeth and I will be driving the whole way.  Driving?  Yep.  Best way to see the country.  Best way to travel.  We’ll be staying at KOA campgrounds on the way out and way back, too.  Should be a lot of fun!

If you’re in San Fran this weekend come out and see us!  We’ll have pens, pen wraps and sleeves, and scholarship notebooks and postcards.

Thanks!
Shawn & Elizabeth

July Results!

Hey everybody!  Thank you so much to everybody who contributed to the scholarship fund in July (and to everybody ever over the last few years).  Through sales of postcards and notebooks, and auctions of pens, we were able to raise $737, with more coming in as auction winners make payments.

The winner for July is Edward U, #16.  Congrats!  I’ll be sending you an email soon to talk about your pen.

You can all help support the scholarship fund every month by purchasing notebooks or postcards here, or by bidding on pens that are up for auction.  You can also help out by donating your old pens so they can be auctioned off, with every penny going directly into the scholarship fund and endowment.  What kind of pens can you donate?  ANY.  🙂  We’ve auctioned everything from inexpensive Chinese pens to more high end customs (coming soon).  Anything you want to contribute will be greatly appreciated.  If you want to donate and request a reserve we can accommodate that request.

When you buy our items or make donations you’re entered into the monthly raffle to win a $225 pen credit towards any pen you want from inventory or to have custom made.  Nib grinds are free.  US shipping is free, but we have to start charging for international shipping now.

You can also enter the pen drawing for free by sending in a postcard or note in the mail to us at

Newton Pens Scholarships
Free Entry
PO BOX 6084
Hot Springs, AR. 71902

Include all of your contact info or your entry will be discarded.

Thank you all so much for all the help and support you’ve shown us and the kids over the last few years.

If you have any questions about anything just send me a note – shawn@newtonpens.com

Thanks- Shawn & Elizabeth

Newton Pens Scholarship Endowment

Hi Everybody,

Something people have asked me about for a while, and that I’ve been wanting to get going for a while, is finally becoming reality.  We’re starting an endowment that will sustain Newton Pens Scholarships indefinitely, or as far into the future as we can.

What we’ve done every year is raise money and given it all away, and so far we’ve given away $26,000.  Those 26 students who have benefited from our scholarships have you to thank.  What I want to do, in conjunction with what we’ve been doing, is to have an endowment that earns interest that we can give scholarships from.  If we have a slow year fundraising, at least we’ll still have money earned from interest to be able to give away.

To start the endowment we need $10,000.  We can start it with $1,000, but the fees are 2% and it doesn’t earn interest until it hits 10.  So we’re going to leave money raised in the bank until  we have enough to get started earning interest.  We already have $2,000 to set aside for this and I’ve been told to expect another $1,000 to go into this endowment fund.  For every $25,000 we have in the endowment we can give away 1 $1,000 scholarship.

To help the endowment along, we’re going to move 25% of our monthly income from postcard and notebook sales, and general contributions, into this new endowment fund.  That way we can reach $10,000 a little quicker, and to continue building it up month by month, so that after a few years we’ll have more to give each year.

We’ll be working with Arkansas Community Foundation to build this endowment.  This will be a Legacy endowment that requires $10,000 minimum to start earning interest.  The fee is 1% annually, and we get 4% spendable each year.

We’ll be labelled an organizational endowment rather than scholarship so that we have more freedom to send money to colleges all over the country, rather than just one that we’ve selected.  ACF is 40 years old and has $285 million in assets, and has given more than $156 million in grants in that time.

We’re able to accept stock, real estate, or timber as gifts as well.  Not sure how that will work but they’ll help us figure it out.

If you have any questions, suggestions, or want to help out, let me know.
Shawn@newtonpens.com

Thanks