I don’t mind the questions at all! You are more than welcome to ask as many as you’d like. I welcome curiosity.
Typically, I write anywhere between 5-25 a week depending on how many letters recently came in, etc. Most of the time, they come in waves of fives at least every other day. Typically. It changes all of the time. Having done this project for over a year, I’ve watched it go up and down. Letters come less during the time that people are moving in and out of dorms, back into their parents homes, during finals week. In the summer, it skyrockets and during the school year, it’s consistent.
You know, it’s funny because writing letters is a constant for me. It’s one of the main sources of communication that I use. Before I reactivated many of my social networking sites, people would ask what would be the best way to get a hold of me and I’d provide them with my phone number, e-mail address and p.o. box number. It’s such a constant that I sometimes will assume that everyone writes letters. And when I hear people say, “I’ve never had a penpal” or “I’ve never received mail that wasn’t a bill,” I’m shocked. It makes one of the biggest differences in my life, for many reasons.
One of those reasons would be that it’s one of the only things in my life that I am completely dedicated and committed to. I’ve always been very nit-picky with what I put my heart into and for me, this comes easy. It’s giving and receiving. I thoroughly enjoy allowing people to write to me — for them to release whatever tension they are carrying, for them to be curious, for us to explore certain things. It’s rewarding. This is why I take on every pen-pal that asks; I never reject anyone whose interested. How could I? How could I deny someone of such a remarkable outlet? And one that you truly cannot find too often. Let’s be honest — there aren’t many people who dedicate their time to writing letters; texts, phone calls and Facebook is too easy and too available.
Writing letters also instills me with an incredible amount of patience and understanding. I’ve learned a lot about people throughout this project. And I’ve learned that there are a hundred and one ways to get to know someone. But every single one is worth it.
I wouldn’t be doing this project if it didn’t make a difference in my life. And every friend of mine who knows me “in person” knows that this is one of the things that makes me who I am. I’ve had several people say, “the day that you stop writing letters is the day that you and I need to sit down and have a talk,” or “I can see you writing letters until you’re old.” And I will. This is an incredibly important project. And with the way that this world is, and how isolated and alone people feel — I am honored to be able to give someone a source of comfort, an outlet.
I hope that this answers your question. I know that it’s long.