It is International Correspondence Month in February, which is coming right up. The month of love! And also of love letters, apparently.


The goal is to write one letter, card, postcard or note of some sort in the mail every day. Is this a daunting task? Perhaps. But sometimes just shooting for the goal is enough to spark a bit of inspiration and get going again.


Here are a few tips for priming the pump on your letter writing adventure.



  1. This is my favourite tip maybe because this is one of my favourite activities, but I highly recommend getting a bin and spending some time setting yourself up, finding and collecting loose envelopes or the last of any correspondence stationery or paper, stickers, washi tapes, glue sticks, stamps. I love seeing my bin slowly empty out.


  1. In advance, it’s nice to have a list of people, and also do the grunt work of collecting all the addresses. Perhaps it’s because I’m an analogue person by nature, but it’s nice when you have all the addresses on a piece of paper, in your bin, so you can check off as you go. Even if you know you have their address in your email, or you have their street address and know you can look up their postal code, it’s nice when you don’t have to make an extra step once you’ve gotten to the addressing stage.


  1. Keep it short, even just a couple of sentences. You can use correspondence stationery that intentionally leaves little room, like Pigeon Post, or standard A5 stationery and be okay with not filling the page. Just a few lines to say, hello, thinking of you, grateful for all you do, hope you are doing okay.


  1. Have fun with the supplies. Use a fountain pen you love, or an ink colour that you don’t usually have an opportunity to use at work. Consider sealing wax, or stickers, or washi. Ornaments for the sake of ornaments: who likes a bare Christmas tree?


  1. Find things to include: magazine or newspaper clippings, flat tea bags, sheets of stickers, a quote that you’ve written out on part of some packaging that’s nice, postcards, a drawing from you kids, an Instax photo…



In any case, I hope you have fun with it this month, if you’re joining in. I love snail mail! I have had my seasons of being a reliable pen pal and also my seasons of being totally MIA for months, but if you keep at it, over the years, the friendships you develop over this slow and steady correspondence can be some of the most meaningful you might have. Even when it’s months between a letter, it can be so lovely to connect again, to hear all the news, the celebrations, the grieving, the changes, the growth. It’s different from an email, even though a nice email can also make my day, or my week. You can hold the papers in your hand, and you can see the handwriting and recognize the stationery and the address. Sometimes a letter will sit folded up in my journal for a while, until I’m ready to respond.


And in the worst case where you couldn’t get it together for February, April is National Letter and Card Writing Month, so you always get to try again after a little break for March.





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January 30, 2023 — Liz Chan



Neri said:

These are really great tips.

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