SNAILMAIL TIPS #6| WHAT TO WRITE

8:14 AM


Hello everyone! How have you been?
I have already told you some impressions about first letters, and what things I feel we should and shouldn't approach in our letter writing moments. Today, I'll be telling you a bit more about what to write on your letters, or mostly, what I like to write and read from my pen pals. 

There are times when despite our strong will to write, words don't really come easy to us. Those are the exact same moments when I need to make a bigger effort so my writing is accurate. I have to keep in mind that'll be read by someone else, who can find all kinds of difficulties when it comes to understand your points. It's ok, - as I said before - to be chatty, and I don't want to see this topic list as an obligatory one, followed by great pen pals. These are my personal suggestions, topics that often reach me that are really interesting, or amusing. These are just a little help for you, whenever you find yourself in the middle of a writing crisis, or in front of a more complicated letter to write. 

Talk about Yourself: this one is pretty obvious and doesn't need many explanation, right? It has happened to me, to even end up writing about my own writing crisis (especially with my oldest and dearest pen pals). It can also be a great way of getting to know new ways to avoid or explore that gap you are experiencing, and it is of course a great way to meet your pals in a deeper way, since your friendship is based on the love for writing, I feel is interesting to explore how we don't feel like writing sometimes. 

Inspiration: a cliché, but usefull advice. Whenever I'm feeling stuck, I find tons of inspiration reading precious letter from that same pen pal. It'll remind us why we wanted that friendship to work in the first place, as also some details about our pen pals we might have forgotten for a while. Letter writing must come from within you, but it is ok to feel a bit lost or not so motivated from time to time,  so don't be to hard on your writing. Just find a way to get inspired on writing again. 

Storytelling: To share stories and episodes about you is something not everyone usually do. I love those pen pals who are at the same time storytellers. They can make us travel around us, them and an incredible world, just by writing to us. Don't be scared,  I'm not talking about characteristics of the writing itself, but the content. I feel really connected to those pen pals who are eager to share stories and experiences with me, adventurous paths they've pursued, unthinkable situations, or the funny clumsy ones. Storytelling is a very human way of communication, writing or visually speaking, and it should be used in letter writing as well. It won't be very difficult to tell a story you lived or experienced to a pen pal, and surely it'll trigger the writing. 


What you like at the moment: Music or cinema discoveries, books you've read recently, or discovers you made that relate to a common interest you have with your pen pal. If you have any types of collections, you should write about those as well. Our preferences and hobbies tell a lot more about ourselves than we can imagine, and are a good way of meeting each other without being to intimist whenever we are not feeling we need to be. 
Nevertheless, I warn you to be pertinent about your content; only writing "I like Hitchcock films and Adam's Snadler." and then changing the subject will actually not tell anything about you to your pen pal - not even your favorite movie by them.


Feelings/Emotions: Snail mail is one of the most truthful ways of sharing feelings and emotions without that fear of judgement. It is hard to write about our most private feelings, but at the same time, it can be of great help at some situations. For instance, as you know, my dear grandmother passed away recently. My pen pals kept on surprising me with the most endearing letters and postcards, to wich I'm still replying. Why am I taking so long? This is why. Because it is really hard to open my heart to others, especially writing about something so heavy to someone I don't know. But the truth is that I felt unimaginably better after picking a pen and writing to my closest pen pals, without any fear, and letting my mind and heart flow in the blank pages. 

Local/World News: Althought I haven't done this one for a while, I do make it happen from time to time. I feel very interested by journalism, chronicles and news on other countries. This way, I often exchange some, adding some notes and personal impressions. My recent exchanges regarding this theme was a dear girl from Indonesia, who was very curious about women's rights and related issues regarding my country. For her, I've written several pages, adding some newpaper clippings and such to help her have an idea that is the more close to reality as possible.


Weather: It seems ironic, that the one theme we often connect to shit-chat, to be one I like for snail mail, doesn't it? Well, I do happen to love to read about weather in other locations. I am very found of those notes on weather, it usually gives me that sensation of presence, as if for a moment I could slide into the letter I'm reading and feel the rain on the sun touching my skin. It also helps me sometimes start a letter, or even finishing one. But, personally speaking, since it's a thread I happen to like it's really easy for me to bring it up, and enjoy it, in the most diverse type of situations.

I hope this little topic list of mine will be of help, when it comes to find a little inspiration to write, and to never lose our motivation towards letter writing. What about you? Do you have a topic/ or topics wich help you overcome the writing gap?

With love, 
M.


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1 comments

  1. Hello, Mafalda!

    First and foremost, I am so sorry about the loss od your dearest granny. I know how hard it is to lose someone dear and close. Sadly, I know it too well.

    Now, about your text... I see a lot of my writing style (letters writing, it is) on your entry, but I still struggle with this. I've had a few terrible weeks when it comes to write. I have a letter to be replied (a single one) for close to a week, but not even those topics are of great help. Time will help. But it's a great choice of topics and a great way to put them.
    Keep up the good work.

    B.

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