Friday, May 30, 2014

“A formal, considered form of correspondence”

Shaun Usher of Letters of Note, interviewed by Marco Werman:

What we’re losing when we tweet people and e-mail people and send Facebook messages rather than write letters is a formal, considered form of correspondence. When you sit down to write a letter, you’re in a completely different frame of mind than you are when you write an e-mail or a tweet, and you really kind of dig deep rather than just, you know, having ten tabs open at once and flicking backwards and forwards and never properly focusing on the job at hand. So I think we’re losing something really quite deep.
Listen to it all: Here’s what we lost when we stopped writing letters (PRI).

In New York last week, I made it a point to buy some Clairefontaine paper and envelopes. I am going to write more letters. If anyone would like a letter from me, let me know. I will oblige.

Related reading
All OCA letters posts (Pinboard)

[Friends, take warning.]

comments: 8

Sara said...


The Crow said...

I would love a letter from you or Elaine, if either of you is so inclined. How do I send you my address?

I promise to return the favor.

The Crow said...

PS: I tried to send you an email with my address, but Outlook has blocked my IP; no idea why.

I am Martha McLemore, at 218 Centennial Avenue in Hanover, Pennsylvania 17331.

The Arthurian said...

"If anyone would like a letter from me, let me know. I will oblige."

You are indeed a piece of work!

Michael Leddy said...

Sara, I thought I was waiting on one from you. Ahem.

Arthurian, well, I guess so.

Martha, I have your address now from the other comment. Expect a letter soon, or sort of soon.

Slywy said...

I write letters but am running out of recipients.

Berit said...

Somehow, I was quite fired up for letter writing between the ages of twelve and oh, say, nineteen or twenty-two.

My next sentence was to be about how that's all entirely gone--due largely to a dearth of correspondents, but then I realized that I've shoehorned letters into my Christmas Cards.

Each one contains at least 3-5 sentences. I send somewhere between 15-20 each year, and receive perhaps 3--or last year none--in return. I indulged in a trumped up affront; but really, how mad was I--for I was Writing Letters!

If you haven't done so, how about a "Supplies" blogpost on personal correspondence paper?

Michael Leddy said...

Hmm — not much to say about paper. If I’m typing, I just use the paper in the printer. If I’m writing by hand, I like Clairefontaine Triomphe paper — not nearly as fancy as it sounds — just an unlined tablet, nice paper. Remember the “writing tablet” (pre-iPad)?