A Month of Letters


The Challenge

In September 2010, I took a month off from the internet. During my vacation, I told people that they could correspond with me by paper letter. Some people did. Some people still are. Every letter delights me.

When I write back, I find that I slow down and write differently than I do with an email. Email is all about the now. Letters are different, because whatever I write needs to be something that will be relevant a week later to the person to whom I am writing. In some ways it forces me to think about time more because postal mail is slower. “By the time you get this…” It is relaxing. It is intimate. It is both lasting and ephemeral.

How so? I find that I will often read the letters that I receive twice. Once when I get them and again as I write back. So, that makes it more lasting. It is more ephemeral because I don’t have copies of the letters that I write and I am the only one who has copies of the letters that my correspondents write. So, more ephemeral.

I have a simple challenge for you.

  1. In the month of February, mail at least one item through the post every day it runs. Write a postcard, a letter, send a picture, or a cutting from a newspaper, or a fabric swatch.
  2. Write back to everyone who writes to you. This can count as one of your mailed items.

All you are committing to is to mail 23 items. Why 23? There are four Sundays and one US holiday. In fact, you might send more than 23 items. You might develop a correspondence that extends beyond the month.

Write love letters, thank yous, or simply notes to say that you miss an old friend. Let yourself step away from the urgency of modern life and write for an audience of one. You might enjoy going to the mail box again.

Feeling intimidated? It’s fewer words than NaNoWriMo and I know how many of you do that. Join me in The Month of Letters Challenge.

Sincerely yours,

MRK signature

Mary Robinette Kowal

So… I am definitely up for this next month! Challenge accepted as my fellow budding letter writing friend Abbye said. February… or Love Month as my blogging friend Clover at Fluttering Butterflies celebrates it. It’s a nice month to be sending letters! So anyway, as I have quite a few letters, postcards and things to be sending  in February to meet my challenge, I have a little proposition for you.

I’d love to write to some of my lovely blog followers! As a wee thank you for reading my blog and also because it would just be a pleasure to connect our lives in this small way. On twitter I have made a handful of wonderful friends, if I may call you that and it would be great to get a little heart-lifting snail mail going. So…if you’d like a handwritten letter in February just let me know. The lettermo website has pointed me in the direction of the postable.com website, so you can collect all your mailing addresses together. ‘Easily gather mailing addresses for wedding invitations, birth announcements, holiday cards, or just because it’s nice to have them. Postable is free.’ It’s so handy and a great idea, and it will definitely be useful for this venture.  If you’d like some mail from me in February please leave me a comment and stick your details into my part of postable: HERE. You don’t have to use your home address if you’re not comfortable with that, what about work or maybe a relative’s?

I dare you to take up this challenge too! Let’s keep the art of writing letters going strong as we wade…or wander as the case my be into 2013. Also lets help each other by swapping addresses. I will try to keep you posted on how my challenge is going throughout February, and I think I will get this calendar printed to jot your names and ideas for your post into. Thanks for everything, as always.


Author: Fiona


19 thoughts on “A Month of Letters”

      1. Postcards smostbards! It’s called a month of letters not postcards. It’s been 11 years since i wrote anyone a letter. I remember it well. Alas…those were the days…

  1. Oh Fiona! I do so love your blog!! Your New Years post was beautiful and this is a wonderful idea – reaching out personally to Internet friends and followers. I am inspired! Have put my details on postable as requested x

  2. What a lovely idea! I wish that I could commit to this, but perhaps I can have a goal to send something about once a month..? That sounds more reasonable for me.

    (Unfortunately I will not be doing my annual Love month celebration on my blog this year! I know lots of people loved it, but I can’t manage all the work and organising that goes into doing it anymore 😦 )

    1. I haven’t thought much about it yet, it will be an effort but just for the one month. I adore writing letters so I should be ok.

      Aw, I’m sorry to hear that. Hope everything is ok. Even if you want to feature one or two posts to acknowledge February I could help you out. Thank you!

  3. I love getting things in the mail. I like to send out thank you’s 🙂 this sounds like a great challenge and the perfect excuse to use all the cute stationary I’ve been hoarding. My husband had a great idea to send letters and pictures to the grandparents from Amelia. 🙂 good luck!

    1. About two years ago I just realised that i LOVE snail mail. I used to love getting writing sets as a child and I used to write to my cousin who just lived across the bridge. I basically am in the wrong decade in lots of ways. Everyone loves getting letters! Good luck! Thanks for trusting me, I laughed at your next comment 🙂

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s