do you want to correspond more in 2014?

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It is one of those thoughts that flit past – how good it would be to be more in touch, especially with people not on social media.

So how to translate this into an action and habit?

  1. Gather supplies Get stamps in advance of writing, which cover the cost of where ever you are most likely to send cards. I find that if you write cards and then intend to buy stamps the written cards tend to migrate towards dark corners of handbags or finding places to lurk on the desk and are finally discovered weeks or months later.
  2. Keep your address book / stamps / cards on you at all times. This means that you can use spare moments. Waiting for a friend or waiting to catch a train catching up with correspondence instead of checking facebook. Make an effort to gather snail mail addresses in one place.
  3. Write postcards not letters. Ditch the thought you will write long literary screeds (ripe for publication later) Instead start with the postcard. It’s the analogue equivalent of the email or text but nicer. If you start writing a card which you realise that you need to elaborate further – just write a series of postcards labelled 1 of 1, 1of 2 etc.
  4. Finding cards. Once you have the intention they will start to pop up. Galleries, museums, stationary shops, advertising can be re-purposed. Its good to start looking for particular cards for particular people. Portraits of 18th C dogs for dog people. I also sometimes buy books of cards (they often work out cheaper).
  5. Reasons to write. Become super polite and revive the art of sending thank you cards, or just ‘I saw this and thought of you’
  6. Be creative. I’ve sent a series of postcards in the run up to someone’s birthday. Just calculate the average delivery time in your area and work your way backwards. I once wrote a card every day for a year for a friend battling a brain tumour.
  7. Get a box where you can throw supplies into when not in your bag so when you do want to write it’s again – easy.
  8. No pressure – writing has its seasons and its reasons

Last call for Postal Joy 2014 ! for those who prefer to receive rather than send mail! 12 items of mail in the next 4 weeks. Sign up here.

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