How to Celebrate World Letter Writing Day

September 1st is World Letter Writing Day, a day to celebrate hand-written correspondence and connection. As technology has advanced, letter writing has become an endangered art form. Sure, we may still write thank you notes or birthday cards, but the act of writing letters as a form of communication has become very rare in our current age. Digital communication platforms, like social media, are beautiful tools that allow us to react and respond to one another in real-time, but there is something nostalgic and timeless about the intentionality and the anticipation that go hand-in-hand with handwritten exchanges. So, let’s talk about ways to celebrate World Letter Writing Day this year. 


Ask A Friend or Loved One To Be Pen Pals

This little question can bring about exciting new ways to connect with someone you care about! As opposed to a text or an email, we tend to be more intentional about what we write on paper. You can make things more interesting by assigning certain topics to your letters, or you could transcribe a favorite poem to share. If you’re both writers or share an interest in creative writing, give each other poetry prompts in each letter and write back with a poetic response. This can create additional anticipation as you wait for each other’s letters in the mail. Make the experience your own: write about the things that bring you both closer, or use the space to share your appreciation for each other. Use these letters as a chance to reconnect and to open up—there are so many possibilities here. For an extra dose of nostalgia, consider buying or making a keepsake box to store all of your letters to look back on in years to come. World Letter Writing Day could be the kickoff to a new favorite bonding activity with a friend. 


Write a “Just Because” Letter to Someone You Know 

If you would rather not have a consistent pen pal, no worries! There are still lots of ways to celebrate World Letter Writing Day in one letter. Have you found that you haven’t had as much time to talk to a friend or a loved one? Do you know someone who has been struggling or going through a hard time? Take a moment to write them a letter. Texts and calls are wonderful, but there is something so special about getting a piece of unexpected encouragement in the mail. If you’re feeling extra creative, try your hand at writing a poem for your recipient that’s inspired by what they mean to you. This requires a bit more time and effort, but the investment is worth it. Gestures like this make people feel cared for and less alone, and it’s something they can put on their fridge or tuck away for a rainy day when they might need to revisit your words. 


Support A Nonprofit Through Your Letter

Letters are gifts that can extend beyond your close circle of family and friends. There are lots of nonprofits and groups seeking pen pals for isolated individuals or people who may benefit from a little bit of encouragement in the mail. One site I would love to highlight today is More Love Letters, created by Hannah Brencher. The MLL initiative brings together people from all around the world who are seeking to lift each other up and break through the lonely walls of isolation. You can nominate someone in your life for a “love letter bundle” or you can read the profiles of people in need of a letter and write to one of them. The MLL team also gives you their address to use as a return address, if that makes you feel more comfortable sending a letter. Their mission shows that we can truly make a difference for one another with our words and with kindness. 


Whether you include poetry in your letters or write a quick note, it all matters to the person receiving it. The act of writing to someone is a beautiful way to reach your hand out to someone in a time of loneliness or struggle. Perhaps World Letter Writing Day will be your way to share a little bit of encouragement with someone, one letter at a time. Let us know in the comments how you plan to celebrate, and happy letter writing, friends!