Posts tagged The Friendly Letter
Here’s what I would do with #MyFinal24 hours

I recently learned about a new book called So This Is the End: A Love Story by Alexandra Franzen, who, through her posts and emails, has rescued me from the sometimes very lonely job of being a writer. The central question of the book is: "If you had just 24 hours to live, what would you do with your time?" 

I love this question! 

Here’s what I would do with #MyFinal24 hours:

I would have a family gathering – picnic-style and all my siblings (there are seven of us) would participate in the softball game. “Family” has a pretty loose definition with my clan, so maybe “tribe” is a better word. Curry in all shapes and forms would be served, and zinfandel would be my drink of choice. During the day, I’d stretch out on a blanket and read the latest issue of Mad magazine along with some past ones. Mostly, I’d be hanging around the four or five picnic tables we moved to make one-big-long-one laughing and talking with the tribe. We wouldn’t be worried about the finality of the last 24 hours because we’ve lived all the thousands and thousands of previous hours exactly as wonderfully as we are living the final ones.

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What would be on your list?

If you're looking for a new book to read, you can order So This Is the End here. BTW, I’ve read Alexandra’s other books and think she is tops.

I also recommend her Web site, for fun and inspiration and to know that everything is going to be A-OK!

Make History, Write a Letter

Want to look at the world, and its history, from a different point of view? Then I have just the book(s) for you.

Compiled by Shaun Usher, Letters of Note: An Eclectic Collection of Correspondence Deserving a Wider Audience, volumes 1 and 2, is a fascinating collection of letters from around the world. The familiar names from history, literature, and the entertainment world, among other circles, certainly adds spice to the book but the real meat is the wide range of communication styles: love letters, rejection letters, newsy letters, job applications letters, a letter written in the 14th Century on a clay tablet, one penned by Leonardo da Vinci, another by Queen Elizabeth II to President Eisenhower, and … well, you’ll have to read the book(s) yourself.

Each letter is transcribed and has a short synopsis. Many of the letters’ original manuscripts are reproduced in the books. There are also photographs of letter writers or artwork to put the letter in historical perspective.

Here's a letter from Elvis Presley to President Nixon.


There is a letter to Francis Ford Coppola from a schoolteacher on behalf of her students asking the movie director to make a film based on the young adult novel “The Outsiders,” by S.E. Hinton.  Or you can see a particularly tender response letter from Iggy Pop to a fan.

The collections of letters highlight the humanity of history and gives us reason to write our own letters. It's important to keep the art of letter writing alive. 


Tiny Project - I did it!
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I made this teeny tiny book for my friends Katie. My inspiration was Alexandra Franzen's The Tiny Project Challenge.

Here are her directions: Sometime in the next 7 days, complete a tiny writing project. Or a tiny audio project. Or a tiny video project. Or a tiny drawing project. Or any kind of tiny creative project. Take a photo of your finished project. Email your photo to to say, "I did it!"

She also posted the instructions here:

I recommend you follow Alexandra. Her work is very inspirational and fun. She makes writing fun again. Follow her here:

Here's the front of my book:

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Letters don't have to long and newsy. It's OK to send a little something. The recipient will be very pleased. I guarantee it.