The Write a Letter Challenge

by Katy on May 30, 2009 · 12 comments

Letter Writing

Readers of The Non-Consumer Advocate know that I like a challenge.

Some are require a fair amount of effort, (like my never ending Waste-No-Food-Challenge) others . . .  not so much.

But here’s a challenge that’s easy-peasy and will only set you back 44 cents:

The Non-Consumer Advocate Write-a-Letter-Challenge.

Nothing feels quite like picking up the pile of daily mail and pulling out a real handwritten letter.

The anticipation, the honor that someone took the time to construct a letter.

Ahh . . . .

There’s just supremely lacking in an e-mail. Maybe it’s too much like work, (oh crap . . . another e-mail to deal with!) but an electronic message simply can’t complete with a letter from a friend.

I used to be a great letter writer, which probably stems from having done a fair amount of international traveling before I had kids. These were the days of impossibly thin air mail letters that I would cram chock full of my latest adventures.

Alas, those days are gone, but that doesn’t mean I should give up on sending letters. My dear friend Jennifer and I have a long, sometimes sporadic history of letter writing, which continues to this day. And I think it is because of this habit that we have maintained a close friendship despite living thousands of miles away from each other. (Although a letter from an in-town friend can also be a treat to receive.)

So sit yourself down with pen and paper to let an old friend know what’s going on in your life.

You know it will make their day!

Challenge yourself to write a letter, and then share about the experience in the comments section below.

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Kristie-ND May 30, 2009 at 7:25 pm

GREAT post! I am only 39(this year), so should be comfortable with the internet, but I HATE email. I use it of course, but I try and make a point to write real letters, or at least drop a card in the mail so people know that I care enough to dig out the stationary and a pen.

I make a particular effort to write my grandmother, who cannot grasp email or the internet and treasures a real letter in the mail.

My other particular letter writing effort is to write to friends of ours who are stationed overseas. My husband and I were stationed in Turkey for 2 years. You have NO idea what it means to get any kind of mail from home, even a bill or a catalog. A letter from home is gold!

passing down family history via printed off emails isn’t quite as nice, as the real letters I have from my great, great and great grandparents down who spoke of struggle and hardships, but where you could FEEL the emotion come through the words, get a sense of their personality by looking at their handwriting, and just being able to touch something your great whatever grandmother touched.


Fairy Dust May 30, 2009 at 7:40 pm

A dear friend and I — both former avid letter writers and huge Star Wars fans — went out and bought a page or two of the Star Wars postage stamps when they were introduced a year or two ago. Then we simply HAD to write letters to each other so we could use those great stamps 🙂


Happy Mum May 31, 2009 at 1:07 pm

My mum — who lives ~4,000 miles away — likes typewritten letters (easier for her to read than handwritten) — and she doesn’t use a computer. I’m very happy using e-mail. So I sort of pretend that I’m emailing her — write a little bit each day, in a word processing doc on the computer — then print it off at the end of the week, and post it to her. She really enjoys getting a letter in the mail — and she likes the “up close and personal” news about our family’s daily doings — and it’s easy for me.


Jennifer May 31, 2009 at 1:55 pm

It’s true, letters are great. And a letter from Katy is the best!


Angela June 1, 2009 at 9:14 am

I love sending cards and letters occasionally, and it is definitely fun to get handwritten mail.

My grandpa is 91 and the past few years email has been too much for him so I make sure I write to him often.

And I’ve maintained a friendship with a girlfriend for 14 years by sending occasional black and white postcards back and forth. It’s really fun to look for cool postcards, to get one in the mail, and most of all to be in touch with someone I met during a weekend conference.


Kris June 2, 2009 at 4:15 am

I love writing letters, too, and nothing beats receiving one. It takes thought and care and a beginning, middle, and end, and a trip to the post office, but what a lovely gift to give and receive. My college friends and I (class of 1970!) still write letters. It is a pleasant sensory experience to use pen and ink and paper and a quiet moment. Good for sorting out my thoughts and practicing better handwriting!


Okami June 22, 2009 at 11:04 am

Hi, Katy

As a member of the Fountain Pen Network, the Letter Writing Alliance and – I and my friends write a lot of letters. I feature some of these on my blog


Missive Maven June 22, 2009 at 3:10 pm

Long live letter writing!

I can’t really consider myself a participant in the challenge since I write many letters anyway, but I am all for encouraging the practice to grow and flourish.


thenonconsumeradvocate June 22, 2009 at 3:48 pm

I just mailed a nice long thank you letter to a friend and got a terrible writer’s cramp.

How pathetic am I?

Katy Wolk-Stanley
The Non-Consumer Advocate


nicole September 7, 2009 at 10:11 am

i am sooooooooooo happy to see people advocating for letter writing. i have always been a huge fan of writing letters. i get a thrill out of mailing them, which is almost as great as the thrill i get receiving them. i am glad that i am not alone in my quest to ensure that real letters are not eradicated by technology.


HereBeDragons October 13, 2009 at 9:41 am

I loved having penpals in my younger days. Recently, I’ve felt the lack of anything interesting in my mailbox and have been writing letters and cards (if I can convince my friends to actually provide a physical address!).

One friend happily wrote back, telling me that most of her correspondents had passed away, so letter writing was a bit novel.

I have friends in far off places on islands and continents far away. Somehow, writing an actual letter that I know they will hold, touch, see makes them feel a bit closer.


Alice March 12, 2018 at 6:05 pm

I just found your blog, so I am reading over all of them. I just have to say that I adore letter writing! It’s the best.


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