How to write a letter

Dear Fellow Journalers,

Now that you’ve decided to write the letters, what do you actually say and how do you say it? Someone very wise once told me that the letter “I” should NEVER be used in the first sentence. A letter should focus on the person you’re sending the letter to and end with the letter “I”. For example, “How have you been?” and “I loved your last letter.” I personally received a note from a dear friend after I sent her a friendship/Valentine’s Day card this year. She began her note “What have you been up to?” and ended with “I loved your card. It warmed my heart. It was the only card I received all day.”

A letter is a gift so if you think of yourself as a giving person your will make your letters naturally more interesting to the person receiving them. What can you share with them? A few hints: the title and author of a book you are reading, the name of a restaurant, where you purchased your new shoes, a craft web site. You could also enclose some stickers, an article you read in a magazine. All these things make your letter a “Keeper”.

Don’t forget to answer the questions (from their last letter to you). You want to keep the thread of conversation going!

Sometimes, if you haven’t written in a while, you have a lot to share. Write the items down. But don’t forget your reader.

Fancy stationery isn’t necessary but it can be pleasing to the eye. I have used coloring pages cut down to size.

Never send a letter in anger. Write it in your journal instead. Remember you never know what the other person is going through at the moment. You think you are stating your points clearly but you may lose the relationship. Be careful with this type of letter.

Keep your letters. When friendships end or loved ones die, you’ll be able to relieve your memories better.

‘Til next time,

~Sallie

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