Gorging on Graphite

by Stuart Lennon

Of late, I have been ploughing through notebooks and pencils. I’m involved in a sales project in my jobby-job. I have at my disposal, a myriad of software tools - and they are great.

Nevertheless, each week, I build a prospect list on paper, with a pencil. Two prospects to a page. Then - I set out to collect some “No”. (Actually, I want “Yes”, but I tell myself that I am looking for some “Yes” and some “No” - meaning there’s no feeling of rejection or failure for me.) As I e-mail or call, I add notes to each prospect, quickly filling notebooks and using up pencils.

Fortunately - I’ve a whole lot of paper and pencils to use.

I would like to introduce you to the Harvest 320 Pro.

First, don't listen to me, go read two excellent reviews. One by Lisa Spangenberg and another by LC Harper.

This wonderful world of stationery is sustained by excellent blogs like the two above, so if you can, why not buy each creator a coffee? Go on - you’ll feel great.

I know that the 320 Pro is an excellent pencil, yet every time I sharpen one, I’m surprised anew. I think it’s what I call the “Susan Boyle effect”. Some pencils come out in all their finery. Blackwings, with their flat ferrules and erasers. They’re a bit flash. The 320 Pro is easy to overlook in the pencil cup. It’s just another yellow pencil. It looks a lot like the original Musgrave #2 Pencil, the Harvest.

Oh - by the way, look at the factory. Isn't it cool?

From Musgrave themselves:

“Our Harvest #2s just got an upgrade. Pencil lovers, meet the Harvest Professional Series. It features the same classic Harvest design, but it’s now made from California incense cedar with an upgraded core. It’s the iconic Harvest you know and love, only better.

It’s rumored that our great-grandmother named this premium line “Harvest” after the yellow harvest moon. It is a hex pencil, straight-grained for easier sharpening.”

Inconspicuous on the outside, under the hood, this is a powerhouse. It’s a strong dark line, but retains a point better than most. The writing experience is silky smooth.

It’s definitely my favourite writing pencil - until I finish it. Then, I’ll pluck another model from the cup, and my eye will pass straight over the 320 Pro, until someday later, when I’ll rediscover it again.