Yesterday morning I had the pleasure of speaking to a class of second graders about my pencil-sharpening business. These kids GOT IT. They UNDERSTAND what I am DOING.
I showed them photos of antique pencil sharpeners in my book:
We reviewed the parts of a pencil:
I even let them look at some of the sharpeners in my toolkit!
Overall it was a very nice visit. The only thing that made me mad was when one of the kids asked how much I charge per pencil; I said, â€œHow much do you think I charge?â€ and one kid yelled, â€œFive dollarsâ€ and I made a pained noise. Then another kid said â€œOne dollar?â€ and then some wiseacre said â€œtwenty-five cents?â€ I raised my voice over the din and said, â€œFIFTEEN DOLLARS PER PENCIL!â€
I sharpened a pencil for the class and bagged the shavings and told them to charge other classes a quarter to look at it and to send me the money every Friday.
Here’s my latest Pencil-Sharpening tour recap, including my encounter with an electric pencil-sharpener salesman and sharpening my 500th pencil!
Let my visit to Salt Lake City serve as a parable about the importance of keeping a positive attitude even as your dreams are ground into black powder by a universe conspiring to destroy you …
Hi everybody who reads my blog! I’m in Salt Lake City, Utah in a fancy hotel!
The latest recap from my nationwide pencil-sharpening tour can be found here.
In other news about HOW TO SHARPEN PENCILS, here is a comprehensive, disarmingly sincere interview I did about the project.
And here is a video made by the good people at VICE magazine:
Literary Festivals, erotic Christian fiction, Southern Comfort, and more … it’s all here in this recap!
I’ve been hired by myself to recap my pencil-sharpening tour. Here’s the first recap!
One of America’s top pencil bloggers has written a comprehensive review of HOW TO SHARPEN PENCILS:
There are great illustrations that are genuinely useful, if you wanted to understand your pencil and your sharpener down to a science. Graphics like â€œIrregular pencil points â€” a taxonomyâ€ shows you five results of an improperly sharpened pencil. He goes into some detail to explain how to avoid pitfalls that result in these types â€” this is actually useful, people!
I’m getting very excited for my nationwide pencil-sharpening tour.
Talk to you soon — on my internet blog!
Hello, blog readers!
I’m happy to say that my new book HOW TO SHARPEN PENCILS will be published on April 10! Can you believe it? I almost can’t.
Friends, this exhaustive pencil-sharpening manual is a valuable addition to the craftsman’s home library and will be the definitive guide for generations of pencil enthusiasts. It features a foreword by John Hodgman, lovely photographs by Meredith Heuer, and 18 chapters, including:
– SHARPENING A PENCIL WITH A POCKETKNIFE
– PSYCHOLOGICAL RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH PENCIL SHARPENING
– MASTERING CELEBRITY IMPRESSION PENCIL SHARPENING (CIPS)
The book is based on my experiences running ArtisanalPencilSharpening.com for the past two years, in which time I have sharpened more than 475 pencils for clients around the world! (If you’re one of those clients, thank you for your business!)
Here are some computer links for pre-ordering the book from robot bookstores:
ORDER ON AMAZON!
ORDER ON BARNES & NOBLE!
ORDER ON POWELLS!
(Of course, it is my preference as an artisan that you buy the book from your locally sourced bookseller.)
To promote the book, I am embarking on a NATIONWIDE PENCIL-SHARPENING TOUR. More information about this tour will be forthcoming.
For now, I hope you will consider ordering the book! Need I say it makes a lovely gift?
Many thanks for your interest,
From your friend with the blog,
Hi everybody! I’m sorry I haven’t bloggered much lately. I just got back from JoCoCruiseCrazy II, a Caribbean nerd cruise organized by Jonathan Coulton. It was really fun! (I will try to find photos on the internet to share with you.)
I have a bunch of shows coming up this spring, most of which are devoted to promoting my pencil-sharpening book, which will be published on April 10!!!
Hmm. I can’t really think of anything else to mention right now. But I’ll be back soon, blogging harder than ever.
We’ve put together a fun show for Thursday’s installment of LOLLYGAGGIN’. Please join me (David) as I host Max Silvestri, Jacqueline Novak, and other funny guests. We will join forces in laughter or my name isn’t Buster Brown, aka “The Cell-Phone Communicator.”
FRIDAY FACE-OFFS returns TOMORROW! Get READY!