Baron Fig School Set

Baron Fig School Set Review

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Baron Fig sent me a copy of their limited edition School Set to review here on the blog. I have been using these for a while now and have thoughts to share with you. Although Baron Fig provided me these items to review this is no way changes my opinions shared.

The Baron Fig School Set is the first time we have seen a limited edition release combining two of Baron Figs staple products, the Flagship Vanguard notebook and the Archer pencil. The School Set pays homage to traditional American school classics, the composition notebook and the yellow pencil.

The three colours of the School Set notebooks

The three colours of the School Set notebooks

The Notebooks.

If you are American there is no doubt these notebooks will be tinged in nostalgia and perhaps a bit of a marmite release for Baron Fig. For those outside of American your view on the composition notebook design and the classic yellow pencil will probably be very different. Personally I find the mottled design of a composition notebook busy and not particularly appealing. The colour choices used in this edition make it far more appealing to a broader audience and was a clever move by Baron Fig. Three black composition notebooks would have been very dull.

Inside these notebooks, and I believe this is a Baron Fig limited edition first, we have lined pages. (Hurrah!) If you're doing any sort of long form writing whether it's morning pages, writing your next great novel, or recording your thoughts in a journal then I don’t believe you can beat lined pages.

Generous, well-spaced lined ruling

Generous, well-spaced lined ruling

The paper is the normal Baron Fig stock that I enjoy using. In this release there are some school related extras on the inside covers of the notebook. The inside front cover has a place to record your personal information and the inside back cover has punctuation definitions and uses, speech and a conversion table. All very relevant to a School Set theme and actually quite useful.

The inside back cover of the composition notebook

The inside back cover of the composition notebook

The Pencil.

The Archer pencil is the traditional yellow American pencil colour with a green dipped end. The main different between the School Set Archer and the traditional school yellow pencil is the lack of ferrule and eraser. The yellow and green contrast one another beautifully, it's a match made in pencil lacquer heaven.

Standard Archer pencil and the School Set pencils.

Standard Archer pencil and the School Set pencils.

The Archer pencil included with the School Set I would guess is identical to the standard grey Archer pencil, just a different paint job. It is a HB grade that has good point retention, even on the Baron Fig toothy paper, and a lovely smooth graphite. I used these pencils for writing during NaNoWriMo and thoroughly enjoyed them. The pencil weight is perfect as there is no ferrule and eraser, making it extremely comfortable. The graphite was smooth to write with and paired alongside the School Set notebook it was a really nice writing experience.

Writing sample of the Archer pencils. 

Writing sample of the Archer pencils. 

Overall thoughts.

I have finished all three of my School Set notebooks during this years NaNoWriMo. Personally I really liked the colours and it was nice to see a limited edition with a lined ruling. The School Set is a solid release from Baron Fig perfectly planned for the back to school period adding a Baron Fig spin to an American classic.

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Thanks again to Baron Fig for sending me the School Set limited edition to review.

My First NaNoWriMo Experience

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November has come to a close which means my first experience with NaNoWriMo has come to an end. I am not a NaNoWriMo winner, I fell a long way short of the desired 50,000 words coming in at 30,572 words, a far cry from the target.

A post about NaNoWriMo isn't the normal sort of post for The Finer Point but during this challenge I used a lot of analogue tools and planned using a trusty Bullet Journal. In today’s post I will share this process and some of my discoveries with you.

My very simple NaNoWriMo Bullet Journal.

I am not a fly by the seat of my pants writer, nor was I a huge planner outlining all aspects of my story. I fell somewhere in between but in order to have some idea of where I was going and what I needed to do I created a very lose Bullet Journal to plan and track my word count.

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The most useful spread was the calendar. This was a simple hand drawn calendar where I planned out what I was writing on which day. This planning was important to kick off NaNoWriMo and forced me to consider the more complicated or time consuming sections of my story and tackle these on the days where I had sufficient time. At the end of each day I added my final word count in for that day. This was useful to see how I had done each day but also proved useful in figuring out if I hadn't written enough for a section. As the month went on I didn’t plan out too much on this page, it became more of a record keeping spread.

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My NaNo Bullet Journal included a chart showing my word count target by day that I copied from Boho Berry. This was useful but became a bit depressing the more I fell behind. I continued to use this as a tracking tool but spreads such as this could become a little de-motivating during the month.

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Other pages I had in the Bullet Journal were not referenced very often but they were important in helping me keep consistency. I had plot and character outlines and lists to make sure I didn't forget anything and also knew the links between characters. The rest of the Bullet Journal was used as a brain dump to keep anything related to my story all in one notebook.

The actual writing.

I wrote the whole thing by hand. I wasn't expecting to do this at all but I actually quite enjoyed it. I had plans of using a mixture of analogue and digital tools and thought my hand could ache from too much writing. Far from it.

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I went through all three of my Baron Fig School Set notebooks. These were perfect as they had lined ruling, my personal favourite, and I could use a wide range of tools on the paper. I polished off my Insightful Spectre Squire refill during the month, worked my way through the School Set Archer pencils from Baron Fig and refilled several fountain pens on numerous occasions. I am not sure I have used any of my supplies that quickly before. It was great fun.

Overall thoughts.

I have really liked taking part in NaNoWriMo for the first time. I wrote far more than I ever expected to and at times whilst I struggled to figure out where I was going with my story, I found a way. I was a long way off the desired 50,000 word target but I am not sure that's the real purpose of this challenge. I found time most days to write, to get this story that has floated around in my head for years, down on paper, by hand.

Time away from my digital tools to create something with pen and paper is really quite liberating. The one change I will make for next year, if I have a story to write, is to drink more. I am sure this would improve the quality of my writing.

Now it's time to edit...