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Who Do You Write To?



Enoch_Root

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Hi all, new member here. I'm re-discovering how enjoyable it is to write with my fountain pens. I sort of set them aside for a few years and just rediscovered them. I just got a new Pilot Prera in the mail. I really like it although it is too small for my hand it seems.

 

I sat down to write my first letter with it and a thought occurred to me. In this day of electronic and instant communication I wondered who still writes letters and why.

 

What got me thinking is that I do have one pen pal that I write from time to time. It's a college buddy of mine who has made some bad decisions. A lot of them. His current address includes "Correctional Institution". He'll be there for a while. He can get on the phone for brief talks, but letters are the best way to visit with him. And he deeply appreciates them. I love the guy but I'm terribly disappointed in what he has done.

 

He doesn't care a whit whether I write with a fountain pen, or a ballpoint, or a crayon for that matter. It's the physical letter that he can read and re-read and news from the outside that he values.

 

I'm curious to know why others write. Thanks.

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Hi all, new member here. I'm re-discovering how enjoyable it is to write with my fountain pens. I sort of set them aside for a few years and just rediscovered them. I just got a new Pilot Prera in the mail. I really like it although it is too small for my hand it seems.

 

I sat down to write my first letter with it and a thought occurred to me. In this day of electronic and instant communication I wondered who still writes letters and why.

 

What got me thinking is that I do have one pen pal that I write from time to time. It's a college buddy of mine who has made some bad decisions. A lot of them. His current address includes "Correctional Institution". He'll be there for a while. He can get on the phone for brief talks, but letters are the best way to visit with him. And he deeply appreciates them. I love the guy but I'm terribly disappointed in what he has done.

 

He doesn't care a whit whether I write with a fountain pen, or a ballpoint, or a crayon for that matter. It's the physical letter that he can read and re-read and news from the outside that he values.

 

I'm curious to know why others write. Thanks.

 

:W2FPN:

 

I think most FPN folks will list some variation of "to put my fountain pens to good use" in answer to your question. But there are so many reasons. Lots of folks still write letters (I'm a bit of an evangelist on this topic - refer to my letter-writing blog and all the many other letter-writing blogs linked therein to see a very active community of snail mailers), but for me the reasons are mostly to slow down and take time to be introspective, and have genuine and meaningful connections with people in our increasingly shallow, multitasking world. Don't get me wrong, these things have their place and I love Twitter, too, but letters are more timeless.

 

I'm also a longtime letter-writer, and I was addicted to snail mail long before the internet was well-known.

 

Finally, I will confess that I am a paper junkie as well as a fountain pen aficionado, and I just love using all that different stationery. It is quite tactile. (Did you guess I prefer paper books to e-readers, too?)

 

p.s. I like your screen name, and the fine books from which it originated.

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I write to friends and a few family members. Letters are my preferred form of communication, for poetic and practical reasons. I've tried a few times to pen-pal around with FPNers and have had a few successes and a few not-so-successful (sometimes people are just linked by a love of all this stuff we talk about here, but how many letters can revolve around that?); currently I don't write to anyone on here (but I'm always up for trying again!). My interest in fountain pens certainly increased the number of letters I write, but it did not initiate the practice.

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restlesscourage

:W2FPN:

 

I have a handful of pen pals I've found through FPN. I also write occasional letters to my best friend, because I know she truly appreciates getting them and we're separated by a couple of states these days. While I communicate primarily via email and text message, I am coming to a deeper appreciation of handwritten notes.

You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should've behaved better. ~ Anne Lamott (This is where I tell my stories.)

 

http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/606/letterji9.png

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I write to the President of the United States and to the Pope and sometimes to the Dalai Lama. I always sign my letters "I am not a crackpot!, Letterman"

Pens - Lamys: 2000, AL-Star, Safari; Reform 1745s; TWSBI 540s

Inks - Diamine Midnight Blue, Liberty Elysium, Perle Noire, Yama-Budo

Paper - Cranes & Co, Fabriano Medioevalis, G Lalo, Rhodia, Strathmore

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They say it's more blessed to give than receive. But I enjoy receiving so I also have to give...mail wise. I currently exchange letters with perhaps 15 people. About half of them are FPN members. And sometimes it takes a letter or two before you put the pen and ink you use behind you and start talking about the other things that allow you to really get to know someone and become friends. The fountain pen friends I've met here have become long term friends and I have met four of them face to face so the letters become more than casual letters...though there is nothing wrong with casual letters and notes, they make going to the mailbox more interesting.

 

Another place I've found new friends to write to is through A Month Of Letters Challenge ( http://letttermo.com ). It will be starting again in February. I met several people there that I am still writing to since finding the site last year.

 

Here on FPN when I am looking at posts usually something someone says gets my attention and I look at their profile to see if they might be interesting to write to then see if they are interested in corresponding. Nothing ventured nothing gained! It is the same with A Month of Letters. It is interesting finding out about Australia, or England, France, or how you find out what plant communities were present in British Columbia thousands of years ago, or what is happening with someone's kids, or new projects a person is working on. I don't find an email nearly as satisfying as a letter, note, or postcard. The average letter I receive is four pages long and the longest was twelve, and the shortest was one from a friend who was busy and just wanted me to know he still wanted to correspond. I've always loved finding a letter or letters in my mailbox.

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I write to friends and family members, mostly. Most of the letters are written on stationery I make myself. I decorate the left margin of the first sheet with Arabesques and small critters. Second (and subsequent) sheets, if any, have matching designs in the upper corners. Folks seem happy to get these and call to acknowledge them, but they never write back. Sometimes they frame and hang them.

Can a calculator understand a cash register?

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Only to my Mom (now 90) and a select few family and/or friends. I use the pen daily, but letters.... just to Mom right now. She remembers doing the Palmer Method writing practice in school. It gives me a wonderful reason to get her critiques on my re-emerging penmanship.

 

http://i18.photobucket.com/albums/b121/trimster/PenInHand_zps157c5a27.jpg

 

There is something rather magical about getting a hand written note, on real paper, these days. There's also something magical about penning that note.

 

Bob

Asoc. Prof. Digital Media

Specializing in Digital Cinematography

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I exchange postcards to fellow FPN members, but have been a little tardy since Christmas. I must get a new batch written. Otherwise I write all of my cards with my fountain pens, and all of the notes that I write while I'm at my desk at home

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I need to do the re-start thing. Just last night I wrote a note to a fellow FPN'r who I received a new pen from on Saturday. It was nice writing a note like that on paper again. It has been way to long. This one was on a note card. In December, I bought some ink from a different FPN'r. That was on some nice paper and I even threw in a few sheets along with the note I wrote of what I wrote it on. I have some nephews that I could send snail mail to- but it is hard enough for them to respond to an email, I don't know if they would have the time to do so. Wouldn't hurt to try though.

Brad

"Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind" - Rudyard Kipling
"None of us can have as many virtues as the fountain-pen, or half its cussedness; but we can try." - Mark Twain

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Hello! I am new to FPN as well!

 

Like others have mentioned, I use a pen every day -- jotting notes, chronicling my tasks at work in a large lab book, writing the shopping to-do list.. but the thing I miss most is writing letters. I have a friend in Boston that I write a letter to every now and again, but I crave more people to correspond with. Perhaps we should make use of the FPN writing list?

Edited by exdevlin
http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/606/letterji9.png
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  • 2 weeks later...

I have a couple of friends also in college that I try to keep up with, but they are terrible about responding!

 

I have actually found some good penpals that are quickly becoming friends on FPN.

 

And, of course, I send letters to my parents. No amount of emails/Skype calls/phone calls/texts will every replace letters because it feels so good to receive one!

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I write to my grandmother a few times each year, as I always have - she's in her 90s and has never had email.

 

I stopped writing to my mother and sisters as they got on the Internet in the 90s. But I never took to emailing them, oddly - I spend all day on email, and just don't enjoy using for personal correspondence.

 

In the past year, I've taken to writing postcards or short letters now and again - first, just to mother, but more recently to my sisters, too.

 

I was reluctant to write letters again, at first - I was worried that I would be putting unwelcome pressure on people. But my family really does seem to like receiving the hand-written notes. And I've now had a few handwritten letters in return - and it's even more of a treat than I remembered.

 

I'm also sending postcards - mostly from the Penguin cover series - to thank people for dinners and favours and such. Somehow, I don't feel as if I'm putting any sort of pressure on people with a post card, though I sometimes do with a letter.

---

Kenneth Moyle

Hamilton, Ontario

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I've always been good about sending cards and post cards. But it was only after I got interested in fountain pens (almost two years ago) that I resumed letter

writing.

 

I wish I could write to my mom and dad, but sadly, they are gone. I write to my four sisters, to my remaining aunts and uncles. I have a few long-time friends I correspond with, and a couple of recent pen pals.

 

Not everyone writes back. My one friend in England and my pen pals are the best at responding.

 

I've written companies to thank them for their product or service.

 

I still don't think I use my pens enough. Maybe I need to write some fan mail to my favorite authors or actors.

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I was raised to write. The thank you letter was required and I had an aunt that I wrote to. Before the internet, I wrote a lot of letters on 6" by 9" Mead paper and stuffed them into #6 envelopes. So cute. I used letter sized paper for my crackpot business letters I used to write when I was a twenty-something know it all. I wish I could be young again when I knew everything.

 

The internet really derailed me. It was the password stuff I didn't get. But once I figured passwords out I still wasn't into the internet. I don't check my email enough.

 

Now I'm writing my niece in Canada and my mom in Spain. I sent my niece some fountain pens, ink and some Claire Fountaine paper and she has written me back. She loves her fountain pens. She carries her Triomphe pad around with her and uses it for everything in addition to letter writing. My mom wrote me a nice letter. It was on A4 paper in a DL envelope. I measured it to see.

Pens - Lamys: 2000, AL-Star, Safari; Reform 1745s; TWSBI 540s

Inks - Diamine Midnight Blue, Liberty Elysium, Perle Noire, Yama-Budo

Paper - Cranes & Co, Fabriano Medioevalis, G Lalo, Rhodia, Strathmore

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coyotewhisper

I enjoying writing various people worldwide exchanging postcards or letters. I have built friendships over the years writing to various people. It is fun to receive postcards from around the world. Interesting to see the various ink colors people chose, their handwriting.

God is my Strength.

Brad http://img356.imageshack.us/img356/7260/postminipo0.pnghttp://img356.imageshack.us/img356/8703/letterminizk9.png

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I wish I could write to my mom and dad, but sadly, they are gone.

 

Why would you let a silly thing like death stop you? I still write to my mother and father in Other Side Camp. Just cause the Postal Service can't deliver there, that don't mean the message ain't received.

 

I used to be a big letter writer and sort of lost it with The Internet and going back to school. I'm starting a campaign to write to everyone whom I've ever met who has touched me in some way, whether I have their address or not. I traveled alone to see my father when I was 12 or 13, and there was a flight attendant who made me feel safe by constantly checking up on me, and even sitting with me and showing me pictures of her new baby. That was 30 years ago, but what she taught me about kindness still resonates in me. I couldn't possibly find her now, but I'm writing to her nonetheless.

 

You could call this a mere journal entry, but it's not. Writing to someone is quite different from writing about someone, whether it's mailed to yourself and just saved, unopened, or whether you send it to Other Side Camp through the fire, it's different.

 

A lot of letters that I write end up starting with some variation of "You may not remember this, but there was this one time when you…" and then I go on to tell them something they did or said that has affected me. It gives me a chance to think about it and processes it, and I hope it's nice for them to have a letter from someone saying "Hey, something you did was really meaningful to me."

 

(By the way, I thought it would be interesting to mail the letters that I can't really send– like to the flight attendant– to my house, care of my children. They can open them later if they want)

Edited by johnmetta
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I wish I could write to my mom and dad, but sadly, they are gone.

 

Why would you let a silly thing like death stop you? I still write to my mother and father in Other Side Camp. Just cause the Postal Service can't deliver there, that don't mean the message ain't received....

 

...You could call this a mere journal entry, but it's not. Writing to someone is quite different from writing about someone, whether it's mailed to yourself and just saved, unopened, or whether you send it to Other Side Camp through the fire, it's different.

 

Good point. I do need to tell my dad what an impact he had on my life.

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have 1 cool as pen pal :P

 

otherwise all my writing effort goes into my thesis notes

My two best writers.

http://s2.postimg.org/v3a1772ft/M1000_Black_L_R.jpg..........http://img802.imageshack.us/img802/1217/85960889.png

.........I call this one Günter. ......... I call this one Michael Clarke Duncan.

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In addition to my pen pals from FPN, I've started writing to my family. I have an uncle who has been estranged from my mother since shortly after their mother died, and I haven't contacted him in years - not for any personal reasons, just haven't had time to visit him. Given the sensitive nature of the situation, I though a letter would be a good, low-stress way to say, "I still love you, Uncle." He can read it and toss it, or keep it, or write back, no pressure.

Then I decided to surprise my family with letters. And I wrote my husband a love letter for Valentine's Day. A few things have happened in the last three months to really drive home to me the value of a thought-out, hand-written note or letter. It's not the card or the paper or the ink, it's knowing that someone thought enough of them to go out of their way to write the note that seems to make people feel special. So, I write to the people in my life who are special. The more people I write to, the longer my to-write-to list gets. I guess that's a blessing, to have so many special people in my life.

http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/606/letterji9.png Life's too short to write with anything but a fountain pen!
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