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home : opinions : letters August 1, 2014

9/19/2012 10:18:00 AM
Letter: Express yourself through letter writing


When was the last time you sat down and wrote a personal letter to someone?

E-mails, phone calls, texts and tweets - they're all quicker and easier. In an age of instant gratification, a letter sounds stodgy and old-fashioned. But written with care, a letter can be the most heartfelt, intimate form of communication.

A letter has the power to convey thoughts and feelings to someone we care about in a way that is memorable and lasting.

Letter writers find that it helps strengthen their relationships with others. It enables them to form clear and concrete ideas and communicate them succinctly. Frequent letter writing teaches discipline, because it is truly an effort some days to sit down and write. Letter writers become better overall communicators and even improve their penmanship.

The recipient experiences the joy of knowing they are truly valued, deserving of someone's full attention as they put pen to paper. Nothing touches the heart like opening the mailbox to find a card or letter from a loved one or close friend. Letters can be touched, savored, and re-read time and again. Letters become keepsakes, even family heirlooms, and help record a snapshot in history.

John Adams, the second President of the United States, was a prolific letter writer. He and his wife, Abigail, exchanged more than 1,100 letters over the course of their courtship and marriage. These letters were a crucial resource for historian David McCullough, who wrote the Pulitzer Prize-winning biography "John Adams."

So sit down, collect your thoughts, and write a letter to someone soon. Reach out to a soldier, or reconnect with an old friend or a distant family member. They will appreciate your thoughtfulness and you may even receive the ultimate reward - a letter back.

Melanie Thomas,



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