Writing letters has been a part of my life since I moved to the States twenty years ago. Back then (I cannot believe I just typed that) international calls literally cost an arm and a leg, so the most economical and personal way to keep in touch with friends and family abroad is letter writing. At that time, I wrote at least one letter a week to my family and send out another 2-3 letters to friends. When I started taking foreign language classes in high school, extra credit could be earned by writing to pen pals. Though I might not have retained any of my French or German proficiency (or just enough to decipher which chocolate bar was better), I have started lines of correspondence, some for over 10 years. It is amazing on how much you can learn about one’s life through letters, even though you might not have the chance to meet.
When I saw the revival of this old-fashion way of keeping in touch from International Correspondence Writing Month, I thought to myself, “Is not it what I have been doing for most of my life?” Of course, time has passed and how quickly I can finish a letter has retarded as well. Since I do not have the habit of finish writing a letter in one sitting, it can take me two weeks just to finish a letter, in the length of War and Peace no doubt. To make time management slightly more exciting, I just started another master’s program as well. So how do I manage to celebrate this time-tested method of connecting with others, while I am trying to keep my head slightly above the water? Power writing. Every time I finish an assignment, I will designate 15 minutes just to write a letter. No texting, no chatting, no checking Instagram. Just non-stop writing. I am glad to report that I have been able to finish some letters with several sessions of power writing, though still not at one letter per day rate. There is no need to compose a novel, even a short note or card to loved ones will suffice. What is a better time to play with all the fountain pens and ink in your arsenal? After all, it is the thought that counts, and better than receiving junk mail!
Want to try it out? Check out InCoWriMo’s official website for more details. There are still 22 days left in the month, so it is not too late to join!