How I loved to receive letters from home when I was away at camp! And I can still remember the beautiful stationery I used to write a note to a counselor I had a huge crush on. How many drafts of that little missive did I pen? Too many!
I love letters. Reading Rilke’s letters to a young writer or any letters about writing always totally inspires and energizes me. You can learn so much from what writers share in a very relaxed and personal way about their craft.
Are you a letter fan, too? Then you’ll be heartened to know that in the age of emails, texting, and iPhones, letter writing is making a comeback. Well, sort of.
The Rumpus (therumpus.net), a literary Website that’s the brainchild of author, filmmaker, and now, entrepreneur, Stephen Elliot, is offering “Letters in the Mail” — a print-only subscription to letters written by a variety of contemporary authors. For $5 a month, you can receive three or four letters that are a cross between a personal letter from a friend and a literary journal. So far he’s mailed the “letters” to 2,000 subscribers.
The idea came to Stephen one afternoon and he announced it on his site the next day. Now that’s taking action! One early and enthusiastic subscriber, Melissa Lohman-Wild, is a teacher and filmmaker who launched her own wonderful site called vivasnailmail.com. She’s enjoyed finding letters in her mailbox that have a literary and short-story feel to them. She never knows what to expect — and that’s part of the fun.
When was the last time you received a long, chatty letter from someone who had a creative way with words? I can’t remember myself. May have to check all this out, just for fun. Of course, I have plenty of books to read. But still, there’s nothing like getting a letter or card in the mail, is there? To me, it’s still a thrill.