Brian J. White

Breaking out the fountain pen

I’ve decided to participate in the A Month of Letters Challenge, the brainchild of writer Mary Robinette Kowal. It’s apparently taken off, too, as The Guardian writes today.

So what is the Month of Letters Challenge? I’ll let Mary explain:

When was the last time you got a letter in the mail? December sees a lot of mail and you remember that sense of delight when the first card arrives. You can have that more often.

I have a simple challenge for you.

  1. In the month of February, mail at least one item through the post every day it runs. Write a postcard, a letter, send a picture, or a cutting from a newspaper, or a fabric swatch.
  2. Write back to everyone who writes to you. This can count as one of your mailed items.

All you are committing to is to mail 24 items. Why 24? There are four Sundays and one US holiday. In fact, you might send more than 24 items. You might develop a correspondence that extends beyond the month. You might enjoy going to the mail box again.

I’ve always liked writing letters, but it’s an easy thing to not do because of how easy it is to fire off an e-mail. Now, I’m not knocking e-mail. It’s an incredible tool, and for most things it is perfectly fine for the task. But there really is something nice about holding something in your hand that someone took the time to sit down, write out, stamp, and mail just for you.

It also gives me an excuse to bust out my fountain pen and the awesome Copper Burst ink color I have for it.

I have an assortment of stationery, but I ordered a new box of letter-writing paper and envelopes for this. It has a little gold butterfly at the top, which might seem a little weird for a guy, but I think it looks nice and really, who gives a flying crap?

I got the stationery on Monday and wrote my first letter today. It’s out in the mailbox waiting to be picked up.

Leave a Reply