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  • Writer's pictureElise

Writing Prompts to Get You Started #28

Welcome to the place that is dedicated to getting you writing (again?). Maybe you have absolutely no idea where to start but have always wanted to try being a writer. Maybe you want to write the great American novel or you thought you'd write a poem about hidden life of a grain of sand. Maybe you just need a little inspiration to get you started or you find yourself just a little stuck. Maybe you find yourself trying to break out of your comfort zone or mix things up at work. Whatever your reason for landing here, practicing a little creativity can impact your life in ways you didn't expect.


But let's be honest. Creativity is a muscle and it needs exercise to work properly. That's where this series comes in. With any luck, this series will get your creative juices flowing and get you thinking in ways you hadn't before. Throughout the summer, we posted a couple of prompts every week. We cut back a little during the school year but will attempt to post at least one prompt a month. If you are interested in more, not only are there prompt sites online, we also have a prompt booklet you can get from us and enough creative people on staff to maybe come up with an idea you can run with if you come in and ask.

 

Letter writing is something of a lost artform. Even as we write more messages to one another than it seems ever before, To All The Boys I've Loved Before aside, we have stopped writing actual letters for the most part. We write in shorthand texts, bullet pointed emails, emoji-filled sentences, anything short of an actual letter filled with heart and soul, thoughts and feelings. We have disconnected from the written word even as we are bound more tightly by them.


Then too, unless we were to mistype the address or number, there is very little chance of an email or text going astray, confusing the intended recipient and sender with its absence (and possibly the person it ends up with). There is little chance for a chance encounter through the mail, little chance for a broken, dented, or otherwise damaged heart by someone sending something and it not getting there. We can still write letters, email equivalent or longhand, but so few actually do. We don't even have to wait for a reply to a message to see if someone read it. We are often instantly notified when they do.


But for generations, the art of letter writing was a treasured craft, one that people would take tender care to put just the right words down and convey exactly what they were feeling or doing. They were a tangible piece of the writer's soul there for their recipient to hold onto. Of course there were business letters, trade agreements, legal documents and an overflowing ephemera of posters, pamphlets, flyers, etc., none of which are running over with sentiment, but it all starts with the simple letter, the spark that connects two distant souls. Not to wax poetic or anything, but it seems there's more connection within a single correspondence than we have yet to find in the voluminous texts as yet sent.


At that point, people would wait hesitantly, expectantly, hoping that the next postal delivery would prove the answer to the shout they put out into the universe. Most letters reached their destination, although there were some that got lost, especially in times of war or through vast distances. Sometimes, especially for the more frequent letter writers, multiple letters would be written before responses to previous missives could be received. Sometimes, it would be entirely a one-sided affair where the receiver never bothered/managed to reply over months/years of correspondence.

So here's your prompt: Write a story that only consists of love letters.

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