|Step 1. Write a draft of the review, with the pen being reviewed.|
|Step 2. Write a short form of the review to be used as the writing sample.|
|Step 3. Take a bunch of photos of it all.|
My camera has a macro setting but not an actual macro lens, so I can't get too close up in my photos. It can often be a challenge to get close enough in to show all of the details and yet remain in focus. The pen also needs to be arranged in something of a pleasing pose (surprisingly difficult to do with a long, skinny object), and the background needs to be something unobtrusive. I've experimented with different backgrounds, and simply placing the pen on a page of my notebook seems to be the most effective right now. Lighting is also a considerable challenge; natural light is usually best, but on dull, cloudy winter days this is not always sufficient. The lighting needs to be bright enough for the colours to show up well, but not so bright that the photos start to become over-exposed. Shadows and reflections can also prove problematic if the lighting is not quite right. Usually I settle for a spot in our dining room that has windows on all sides and turn on all of the lights in the room, for a mix of natural and artificial lighting.
|Step 4. Edit photos and upload.|
Now, only the easy parts remain: typing up the draft of the review in Blogger, editing it as I go, adding in the necessary photos and links, hitting the Publish button, and watching the comments come in. Overall, writing a simple pen review is a surprisingly lengthy process that requires a considerable amount of time and effort. Still, they're a lot of fun to do, and while I do not foresee as many reviews in the coming months as there has been in the past (once I finish off the reviews from my last JetPens order), I'm sure that the odd one will always show up. I hope that you've enjoyed this look behind the scenes, and thanks as always for your support and comments!
(Pen featured in this post: Pentel EnerGel 0.7mm Black)