Wasn't it delightful to check your mailbox in December as you received so many hand-addressed envelopes filled with holiday cheer? Getting "real mail" is a treat, something we also discovered during our Crusade a few months ago: Spread the Love. Laura reminded us that this is National Letter Writing Week (and she's hosting a party on her blog!) What? You didn't get the memo either? It's never too late to make this a priority, to not just think about writing a letter, but to do it. Now that I think about it, Kathy also blogged about writing a letter. Here's a *smack to the forehead* - write someone today.
There are many ways to get your message across - you can be all fancy with the pens and wax seals or funky with cards and stamps. You can think big like we did when we wrote to both the Queen and the Queen Mother - and we got letters back*! Or you can just write the most minimal words, from the heart.
I've been writing Fan Mail for years. First letter was probably to David Cassidy, most recent was to David Carson. In fact, this week I sent off a handful of emails to several people who were featured in Helvetica, and heard back from a few already! The cool thing about this cyber world is we can follow an impulse, find a person, and make a connection. Instant gratification. Instant expression of gratitude. I keep a file of fan mail I've sent and the responses I've gotten - both through real mail and via email. Sadly, I've lost some copies because I didn't print them out right away - so learn from me, after you hit send, hit print. (Yes, I admit that most of my letters are by email lately but I'm vowing to change that because how do you know that your recipient is hitting print? Don't you want them to have a real letter from you?) It's really interesting to look back at the letters I've sent as a fan and to remember what struck me to reach out to another person - whether it was an artist, or a writer, or a someone who touched me in some way.
I was doing a little digging around online and came across THIS from Emily Post's Etiquette. She was lamenting that letter writing was going to become a lost art and be replaced with telegrams and phone messages. THAT was in 1922. Hello? Email, texting, voicemail.....she would die! She goes into great detail about the kind of letter we don't like to get - letters no one likes to read. (Not a bad lesson to review for us bloggers!) But she also tells us this, above. Love that.
I'm not dissing email - you got it, use it! It's been a terrific means of communicating. (Leaving comments is like a little letter of validation too!) I'm just saying, write a letter - whether it's a quick note, or a thought-out paragraph, to let someone know you're glad they're around, you're thinking of them, they have influenced you, or you just like their music. *wink*
Who will you write to?
* Because my husband is from England, I made it a practice to send notes to the Queen from our kids. When Windsor Castle suffered a fire we sent $2 from Peter and Sam and rec'd a letter thanking us for the donation and how the money would be deposited. Later, when Fallon was born on the Queen Mother's birthday we would send her cards, telling her it was Fallon's birthday too. Every year we would get a letter with birthday wishes in return. Ya never know who will write back! Of all the letters to people I consider "stars", I've heard back from the majority. Of course it's about SENDING your positive vibes out into the world without any expectation of response, but it's kinda cool to hear back too!