Friday, December 9, 2016

The Model Letter Writer



Are you a Model Letter Writer?


The Model Letter Writer
Or, Art of Polite Correspondence 
For
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Containing A 
Complete Essay on Letter Writing,
Also A Course Of Interesting Letters On

BUSINESS, LOVE, COURTSHIP AND MARRIAGE

BY:  NELLIE GREENWAY (c.  1910)

This book is AMAZING!  Never mind that the book is literally  crumbling in my very hands, it is a gem in the rough.   What really caught my eye was the introduction which is a 28 page Essay on Letter Writing.  Oh yes, this is definitely up my ally.  

I hope to give my readers little snippets of this charming book over time.  But, dear reader, be sure to have a dictionary close at hand.  You will find, sadly, that our vocabulary has quite shrunk over time.   So let us begin with a portion from the Essay.




CONCISENESS OR PROLIXITY OF STYLE

Conciseness is one of the charms of letter -writing: we do not mean to say that a letter should not contain sufficient facts , ideas, and feelings; but they ought to be as briefly expressed as perspicuity and elegance will permit.  If we encounter an idea with verbiage, it loses it power.  There are some persons who, when they express a feeling or a thought, of which simplicity should be the charm, clothe it with all the verbs they possess: this is like wearing one's whole wardrobe at once;the figure is lost in the mass of drapery.  Lengthened periods are as much out of place in a letter as they would be in conversation, of which letters may be called the prototype; for they tire the reader even more than they would the hearer : when written, their faults are also perceived with much less difficulty than when spoken.  Our style of course, may rise with our subject: but all parade of words should be dropped in a familiar epistle.  The death of a friend  or relation , a calamity, or any circumstance of grave importance should not be communicated in the same manner as a trifling occurrence , or even a happy event: brevity, in these cases , is beauty; in those it would be deemed unfeeling and abrupt.  "You ask me to send you news of your favorite school-fellow, Harriet:--she is married."  This mode of communicating such an even is unexceptionable: but it would be most improper to state the death of a person in the same manner;that is, by merely substituting "dead" for "married."  In announcing the death if a friend, we should communicate the fact in a way comporting with the gravity of the subject as thus--"It is with melancholy feelings I reply to your inquiries respecting our old school-fellow, Charles Grosvenor.  A few weeks ago he was the animated and intelligent companion of all around him,but he was seized with a typhus fever , the violence of which baffled the skill of his physicians, and terminated his life last week, at the house of his father."

But in aiming at the acquirement of an elegant and easy brevity, it is incumbent on us at once to avoid falling into a rugged or an enigmatical style, and becoming so concise as to be unintelligible.  Boileau, echoing Horace, says, "J evite d'ĂȘtre long ,et je divines obscure."  This is a fault which must be avoided; it is even better to be prol 'x and intelligible than brief and obscure.

To an absent friend, an elaborate letter will be most welcome: a stranger, a superior , or a person of whom the writer is seeks something, will recoil from a "folio of four pages" and, perhaps, throw it aside unread ,or, at best, but slightly skimmed over.  When the party, to whom a letter is addressed , is uninterested in the subject on which it is written, the writer  of it should display a brevity, which will attract attention, and insure a perusal :  no unnecessary ornament should be used, nor , in fact, anything introduced but what is important and bears strongly on the case stated, or the inquiry made.

All these little personal details and trifling circumstances which are so delightful in a letter from a friend, would fatigue and disgust a stranger, or a superior, to whom they are destitute of interest.


Lessons I learned from this portion:  
1.  Too  much flowery talk in a letter loses power.
2.  There is a balance between too much information and too little.  Avoid coldness with excessive conciseness.
3. Be sure to approach subjects of gravity (death of a friend, calamity ) with great care and sensitivity.
4.  Be conscience of your relationship with  the  recipient .  If the recipient is a total stranger,  then there needs to be brevity and  a "getting to the point" in the letter.

I hope you have enjoyed this little lesson on letter writing from the past.

Write Letters,
Write Often,

Lady Pamela

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Black Friday Special ....Thank you!



Thank you !


I hope everyone has had a wonderful and Blessed Thanksgiving!  Now is everyone ready for some Black Friday shopping?  If you have been looking to get a Jane Austen Letter Writing Society Kit....this is your best opportunity!   All 10 of my themed Letter Writing Kits are on Sale!  Starting at midnight tonight use the code:   BLACKFRIDAY10 to get a total of 20% off any of my kits at my Etsy Store: LostArtRevived.  Have a wonderful rest of your holiday,

Write Letters,
Write often!

Lady Pamela


Monday, November 21, 2016

Making Mail Monday


Let's make some MAIL!

Here is a new envelope that I just made using some pages from Pride and Prejudice and my rubber stamps.  Oh this is a good page...dialogue with Elizabeth and devious Wickham...be careful Elizabeth....don't fall for it!!!   Seriously, in my home we often categorize  people according to literary figures.  Have you ever done that? Dickens is GREAT for this as well as Jane Austen.  I think they both had keen insights into human nature.  So we have had our encounters with "Wickhams" trying to get to our daughters-- (I have 6 beautiful daughters, that we , my husband and I , protect fiercely!).  We have met good natured, generous , "Mr. Bingly's",  and it goes on.






Here is a little project that I did to add to my letters as little "tuck-ins".    Tea and Jane Austen...what could be better?




Here are  a few orders that went out recently with Jane Austen Kits!  You can purchase yours at my Etsy Store.  All my letter writing kits are ON SALE right now... perfect for holiday giving!




Here are some Jane Austen necessities that I have in my Etsy Store !   Top left:  The Complete Jane Austen Letter Writing Kit, which includes a wax seal, and a stick of wax! Top Right:  Variety of Jane Austen Stickers.  Bottom Left:  My very popular Jane Austen Mini Kit! and Bottom Right:  a pack of 4 Jane Austen "mail tag cards".  





The Jane Austen Letter Writing Society....a place for kindred spirits!


Have A GREAT DAY,

Write Letters,
Write often!

Lady Pamela

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Jane Austen Mail!


Lovely Letters...to Lovely People!


Here is a a batch of letter that just went out today to members of the JALWsociety.  I hope they will overlook my up hilly-down-hilly writing with my dipping pen.  I know.  I need to get  some lined paper to put under my paper.... And I did have a few cross through(s), and  a ink blot or two...but I had such a wonderful time putting the mail together.  I will do a post on some of the contents of these letters...little peeks .  But for now, I hope you enjoy seeing my envelopes all gussied up and mailed out.

Write Letters,
Write Often.

Lady Pamela

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Making Mail...Jane Austen Style!



The Society is in FULL Swing!


The Jane Austen Letter Writing Society Pen Friend  (Fall)Exchange is in full swing!  We had 50 people that signed up for the exchange. I need to get some stats out about the participants like I did for the first Pen Friend exchange.  It is always fun to discover more about what a JALWS member is like.    I did not get paired up this time around, but thought instead, that I would send out letters to various members of the society.  So I thought that I would begin by making some envelopes and getting a little happy mail started.  I found a good sale at Michael's on the scrapbook paper to make my envelopes.  I adore the black and white patterns...just so classy!


And of course, I can never pass up the matching embellishments...I believe I picked these up at Hobby Lobby.  So cute.  I think I am good for now on washi tape...I'll have to get a picture of my supply sometime soon to share.  Where do you purchase your washi?  Many times I order mine from Etsy stores.  Other times I just pick it up where I can.



I do wish I had more Jane Austen Quote rubber stamps.  "Come on , Etsy!"  Someone do this...Please?? 

 I  believe this letter pictured above went out to Lady Nina Ruth.  She is such a lovely lady...she came to my rescue  when one of the society member could not get in touch with her pen friend.  And thank you to Lady Sheryl for the same thing.  You dear ladies are such a blessing!

Do you have any interesting mail to share?  Are you enjoying having a happy mail box?  You may share your photos with me at JALWsociety@gmail.com.  I'd love to put together a post of all your experiences.

Write Letters
Write Often,

Lady Pamela


Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Fall Pen Friend Exchange, Signups!



Is it possible to get a pen pal  that I like?




In one short word, Yes!

It is time for the FALL  Pen Friend Exchange!  This is where I personally select a pen friend for you based on your completed application.  The application (see the menu bar at the top of this page to access the form) allows me to  match you  according to your preferences.  This is not a perfect system, but I do try my best.


Directions:  1. Fill out  the "application form" (at the top of the page, menu bar) --don't forget to take the "Which Jane Austen Heroine  Are You?" Quiz which is located in the side bar of this blog. This will help you fill out the application form, question #9.  2.Then by copy the completed application and paste it into an email. Send the completed application form to me at :  JALWSociety@gmail.com  The deadline for applications is:  September 4th, 2016.  

I will be monitoring my email box :  JALWsociety@gmail.com  and begin processing the applications.    You might not get a response from me immediately, but I hope to start working on them this week.    You will be notified of your pen friend after the September 4th deadline.  It usually takes me close to a week to get it all worked out.  :-).  I do this the old fashioned way...some day I'll have to do a blog post on this process, as I really amaze myself that it all works out so well.  Try to be as specific about yourself as possible in the application...this allows me to better match you, but also remember that we all must be flexible too.  Many of you want international pen friends, but sometimes I run short of those applicants.  If I run into a real problem, I will usually notify you per email.

IMPORTANT!!!!
I would ask that you only join the pen friend exchange if you will follow through on your commitment .  This means that you will write your pen friend, and usually this involves several letters over the course of 3 months.  It is very disappointing to those fulfilling their commitments  when their partner does not respond in kind.  

One final note.  I want you to know that the Jane Austen Letter Writing Society's mission is to promote thoughtful, meaningful communication through the handwritten letter .  Although I promote the elegant aspect of letter writing (I love vintage items connected to letter writing) , it is to by no means eliminate people who do not have access to stationery or other writing implements.  The emphasis should always be on the content of the letter.  So, if you possess the ability to write a good letter, you are more than welcome!  If you feel like you are a bit rusty with your letter writing skills,  still consider  joining the society, to help improve your skills!

Any questions?  Please leave your comments below or email me directly at JALWSociety@gmail.com.

Visit my Etsy Store for  my Jane Austen themed letter Writing kits, and other Jane Austen themed snail mail supplies!

I look forward to a new Pen Friend Exchange!

Write Letters,
Write Often!

Lady Pamela

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Fall Pen Friend Signups Now!


Customized Pen Friend...just the way you like it!







It is time for the FALL  Pen Friend Exchange!  This is where I personally select a pen friend for you based on your completed application.  The application (see the menu bar at the top of this page to access the form) allows me to  match you  according to your preferences.  This is not a perfect system, but I do try my best.


Directions:  1. Fill out  the "application form" (at the top of the page, menu bar) --don't forget to take the "Which Jane Austen Heroine  Are You?" Quiz which is located in the side bar of this blog. This will help you fill out the application form, question #9.  2.Then by copy the completed application and paste it into an email. Send the completed application form to me at :  JALWSociety@gmail.com  The deadline for applications is:  September 4th, 2016.  

I will be monitoring my email box :  JALWsociety@gmail.com  and begin processing the applications.    You might not get a response from me immediately, but I hope to start working on them this week.    You will be notified of your pen friend after the September 4th deadline.  It usually takes me close to a week to get it all worked out.  :-).  I do this the old fashioned way...some day I'll have to do a blog post on this process, as I really amaze myself that it all works out so well.  Try to be as specific about yourself as possible in the application...this allows me to better match you, but also remember that we all must be flexible too.  Many of you want international pen friends, but sometimes I run short of those applicants.  If I run into a real problem, I will usually notify you per email.

IMPORTANT!!!!
I would ask that you only join the pen friend exchange if you will follow through on your commitment .  This means that you will write your pen friend, and usually this involves several letters over the course of 3 months.  It is very disappointing to those fulfilling their commitments  when their partner does not respond in kind.  

One final note.  I want you to know that the Jane Austen Letter Writing Society's mission is to promote thoughtful, meaningful communication through the handwritten letter .  Although I promote the elegant aspect of letter writing (I love vintage items connected to letter writing) , it is to by no means eliminate people who do not have access to stationery or other writing implements.  The emphasis should always be on the content of the letter.  So, if you possess the ability to write a good letter, you are more than welcome!  If you feel like you are a bit rusty with your letter writing skills,  still consider  joining the society, to help improve your skills!

Any questions?  Please leave your comments below or email me directly at JALWSociety@gmail.com.

Visit my Etsy Store for  my Jane Austen themed letter Writing kits, and other Jane Austen themed snail mail supplies!

I look forward to a new Pen Friend Exchange!

Write Letters,
Write Often!

Lady Pamela