A little note about how we got here

pexels-photo-29154

A question came up this morning that deserves a fair answer  .. Just how did we get here?

Back in 2015, the way people participated and connected with correspondents on the original incowrimo site was to enter your name to the comments section below the list of 29 people who wanted to get letters from you. In fact, roughly one hundred and fifty people or more did just that. The page became a whirlwind of conviviality driven by the participants well into April while the site sat otherwise dormant.

Many of the 2015 participants continued to write to each other throughout the year and a number moved on to other forums. Impressed by the experience, there was a great deal of discussion, mostly by letter post and forum, as to whether the site was going to be revived for 2016 or not. As it turns out, it floated rudderless for the entire year.

Fewer people posted their names to the site for the 2016 non-event and it soon became evident that the site had not been updated since February 2015, the comment section had become unwieldy and difficult to sort through and the whole experience had become unworkable. There was a fair bit of questioning by letter post and a number of forums about what could be done to help pick up the slack for 2017 if the official site stayed out of commission.

Quite a bit of thought and preparation went into the creation of this incowrimo-2017 site. All of it from participants in previous years events, many returning for their 4th and 5th years. You soon learn that people who hand write letters are welcoming, constructive, helpful, fascinating and care passionately about all aspects of exchanging mail. The experiences of the previous incowrimo events was a rare and welcomed event to celebrate a pastime that has generally been pushed to the wayside over the past couple of decades.

There was a great deal of help and thoughtful commentary behind the scenes. Research and discussion were undertaken to try to determine how to make the site genuinely helpful to participants in addition to making it international in scope and flavour, not just in name.

By late summer and early fall, a number of participants sent letters, enquiries, posts and emails to the owner of the original site to try to determine if there was a commitment or intention to revive the site for 2017. No one received a reply. One person spoke to him directly about it in Germany to which he replied that he did not have time.

In response, this site was set up in October 2016 with the support of many participants of previous years in order to see that a wonderful idea not die.

 

 

 

 

12 Comments

  1. Steve says:

    Thank you for the background history. I started in 2015 and was very sorry to see 2016 was not organized. It wasn’t great year for me and I wasn’t sure if I’d join in for 2017. I’m glad I found this site and look forward to a great year.

    Like

  2. patlandon5 says:

    You and all your helpers are our “hometown heroes” ♥INCOWRIMO is a wonderful event. 2017 is off to a super start.

    Like

  3. I’m sorry I didn’t organise something proper for last year. Thanks for taking this on for 2017.

    Like

    • No worries, in retrospect, I think everyone wishes it had turned out a little different. Thanks for the encouragement, I don’t think the international letter-writing community would be what it is if it weren’t for people like you!

      Like

  4. KMC says:

    I saw the list of ‘people who would love your correspondence’ on the 2017 Incowrimo site and the Duke of Edinburgh’s name is mistakenly listed as Albert instead of Philip. I wanted to mention it so that it could be corrected.

    Like

  5. Jessica says:

    Is the use of a fountain pen either required or expected, or can a letter simply be handwritten? Thank you!

    Like

    • Crayons, markers, pencils, paint, stamps and stickers you’d be surprised but we’ve seen them all come through the mailbox. Have yet to see a letter done in wax resist or disappearing ink but I’m sure it’s out there waiting to be delivered :) Fountain pens are OK too, it’s up to you what you choose. Print, write, or brush, just hand written and posted to someone is good enough! Welcome and enjoy your month!

      Like

    • radellaf says:

      I love pens, but if you want to find a typewriter, or even (this probably is cheating) use one of those websites that mail a card for you and you just type in the message, that’s fine with me. Especially if it’s the difference between writing and not.

      Like

  6. Save the USPS! says:

    This looks awesome!! I run a Facebook page on writing letters, and a Fan shared your page with me. I’ve posted about your project to spread the word!! Good luck! :-)

    Like

  7. Save the USPS! says:

    My page is called Save the U.S. Postal Service by Writing More Letters!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: