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  1. Aloha everyone. Status: I have been corresponding for awhile now. Always responding fairly promptly when a letter is received. And, never missing a response. In this way, I figured the person who I'm writing to would be in their comfort zone as far as how often to write, if I only equally respond. And, I'd be always attentive to be sure to respond with a well composed missive, most often with enclosed pictures to share since I'm a photographer. I also pay attention to letter lengths. There's no sense in my responding to a single half page written on both size with 4 full size Rhodia sheets written on both sides. And VS VS. I figured, this way, the other person sets the pace of disclosure and all that, and I'm happy with that. Partial results: Some correspondents are very regular and steady. A few develop great exchanges. Others perhaps lose interest in writing or fountain pens or :"who knows" over time and fade away. And, others, after an initial letter exchange simply stop for some unknown reason. Question: However. I had a though that what if the other correspondent simply forgot to write and instead of a monthly exchange, 2-3 months go by. Should I write a short letter to keep up, or simple realize that the other person is no longer interested in writing or has the time, etc?' I'm very meticulous in keeping track of things. Perhaps others are not? Exception: I did have one person not write in nearly a year, then a letter appeared and it was nice. But, who knows if what used to be a regular monthly exchange will resume. Unknown? Exception: One person went through a bad health patch and was not in the mood to write for nearly a year.. Yet, perhaps a cheerful inquiry note in the mail from a corespondent would bring cheer. Who knows? One can only guess? And, not pry. You can't tell the difference between no longer wanting to write or no longer able to write, etc. Exception: sometimes, there is a certain relationship established, at least early stages, and there's familiarity. Being human nature, we are concerned when someone does not respond in turn. Yet, it would seem intrusive to send a letter after already sending one without a response 2 months later. Like being a "pest"? Or needy? Question to the forum: 1. What is the proper etiquette for letter exchanges? 2. Do you write only when written to? 3. Is the letter exchange 1 for 1, equally reciprocal? 4. Is it natural for correspondents to come and go and a few endure over time? (perhaps like real life?) 5. An experienced correspondent once told me that snail mail correspondence is like a "slow conversation". That was nice and I took it as good advice. 6. How do you do your letter exchanges? 7. What are your protocols? 8. Other tips and thoughts and your experiences. Thanks everyone for your help and advice Aloha jim
  2. I occasionally have arthritis flare ups in my hands and fingers. With that, my normally "Business Palmer" cursive turns illegible. However, my printing is very legible and nicely spaced, but much slower than my cursive. It is enjoyable to me to write cursive and to slowly improve . . . .but. . . . I am wondering if it is within good etiquette to switch to print on some letter corresponding for this reason? Then, there might also be the fun challenge to improve my printing style as well which I've never done. Thoughts? Thanks you for you help and thoughts, jim ps: Some people have writing that looks more like printing or printing with flourishes than script and it can look great as well. But I have not tried that for corresponding.
  3. essayfaire

    Ink Color Etiquette

    I was wondering if anyone knew what the correct color ink is to write a thank you to a Japanese family. The note will accompany a small gift. In the States, I'd stick with black, but I'm not sure about Japan. Thank you!
  4. penzealot

    Pen Show Etiquette

    Hi! Just wondering if I can get a clear picture of pen show etiquette. I have seen a few posts about show etiquette, but they haven't covered all of the topics I have questions about. I have attended one pen show and here are the questions that resulted: 1. Handling the pens - I am enquiring because most vendors didn't seem to care if we picked up the pens to look at them and their nibs. I saw many people posting pens and writing with dry or wet nibs on paper. However, I went to one table and began to pick up a pen (nothing too fancy, a Sailor Starburst if I remember correctly) and was heavily scolded by the man working the booth. Also, I witnessed a man get the same sort of scolding when he attempted to post a pen at a different booth. 2. Price shopping - There was a very specific pen I was looking for at the pen show I attended and only two vendors had the pen. One vendor was asking significantly more than the other, despite the fact that they were both brand new pens. The less expensive vendor sold the pen I wanted while I was looking around and trying to make up my mind, so I went to the other vendor and asked if he would price match what the other vendor had offered. He immediately asked me who gave me that price and stormed off to his table when I told him who it was. I was left with my mouth hanging open and wondering if I had done something wrong. I don't know what resulted from the storming off, but again, I felt like I had done something wrong. 3. Lingering - is there a certain window of time that is acceptable or unacceptable to talk to vendors or look at their pens? I had to do A LOT of waiting to look at certain things and talk to certain people. However, when I got my turn, I felt like people were irritated with the amount of time I was spending (even though it wasn't more than anyone else). Is there a certain flow to pen show that most people follow? 4. Using a pen - is it okay to ask to use pen? Several vendors were inking up new pens and selling them, and other refused to ink up new pens. I understand why a vendor would not want to ink up a new pen, but i don't understand where the line is drawn. 5. Pre-Show - I know that for most shows (if not all) you can pay for early entry. Is there a special, more exclusive early entry? I have read that there are after-hours activities, or "pen parties" but don't know how to get involved. Are these parties exclusive, or can anyone attend? How can a person find out about these things as an attempt to get to know more people in the community? I think that's all I've got question-wise. Can't wait to hear what all of you have to say.





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