Are You Tough Enough to Accept Mary Robinette Kowal’s Correspondence Challenge?

Author and puppeteer Mary Robinette Kowal has a challenge for you! Become a part of lettermo, and for the month of February, send at least one item through the mail each day. (Or at least, each day the mail runs, which leaves you with 22 days to mail stuff.) Which, as Kowal points out, adds up to much less of a commitment than those NaNoWriMo people expect.

Why should you do this? For the answer, we must journey into the darkest reaches of the past, to a mythical land called 2010, when Kowal took a vacation from the internet. She asked people to write to her, and was delighted to find that old-fashioned, paper-based correspondence had a different feel and tone. After she returned to online life, she realized she missed the letters, and decided to make it an annual tradition!

Kowal encourages everyone to join in, because as she says, letter-writing “…is relaxing. It is intimate.” She finds it both “lasting,” (she often revisits the letters while replying) and “ephemeral” (there is only one, physical, copy of the letters). There is no cache of gmail replies, file full of unfinished drafts, or bright red pop-up numbers harassing you into checking on Facebook updates. Just you and your thoughts, some paper, and the ink of your choice. Now, we would never encourage you to leave the Internet entirely, because, well, we’d miss you. But writing letters sounds like a wonderful way to spend your time in the winter!


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