Inspiration for Letter Writing – Letters of Note

We’ve made it halfway through International Correspondence Writing Month, and in case you needed some inspiration, I thought I would give you a closer look at the marvelous Letters of Note book, compiled by Shaun Usher. Who would’ve thought I’d leave the world of teaching and book reports, only to write my own…


This big beautiful book is really a must-have for any letter writer, snail mailer or lover of the handwritten note. It has funny, tragic, love, inspirational, historical letters of all sorts. I admit, I skipped over a few letters that were pages long, but there’s enough in here to just browse through for hours again and again.

And of course, how you address the envelope before you send it out is critical. It’s the first impression that begs the reader to open this before all the junk mail and bills.

Letters of Note

Agh! What could be more important than a letter to a Top Scientist – and marked Urgent!

I’ve long been trying to convince Jon we need some custom letterhead. For equally long, Jon has been trying to convince me that I should just make up for not having custom letterhead with my words of wisdom. If only we lived in the Life Aquatic, and Bill Murray could hand me a box of my own stationery…

Letters of Note compiled by Shaun Usher

This AmericanAirlines stationery is enough to make me want to take a trip just to fly on a plane where I can write a letter to someone indicating my altitude and location. Obviously I would be flying to Madagascar or the Galapagos or somewhere exotic.

However, let’s be honest, if I’m going to commission a custom letterhead, I am going to take my inspiration from Annie Oakley. Yes, my letterhead really does need to be half the page.


I guess I have a soft spot for these letters written by kids. They’re hilarious. It’s even more hilarious when the famous folk write back. In all seriousness, especially as e-mail and electronic communication are so pervasive, these letters are so precious.


There is nothing that can beat this letter from Samuel Barber to his mother, explaining that he was not meant to be a footballer, but indeed, a composer. “Don’t ask me to forget this unpleasant thing and go play football”. 


So whether you’re cup-of-tea-and-pen-at-the-ready, or you’re slogging through the month of letters, we’re more than halfway to the end! If you do manage to find a copy of the book at your local library or bookshop, or if you go online and see some of the bloggers and fellow fountain pen users who are taking part in this month of correspondence, I hope you find some inspiration.

4 thoughts on “Inspiration for Letter Writing – Letters of Note

  1. Debora Lustgarten

    I had seen your reference to this book in an earlier post and decided to take a look. The book is really delightful and should be making its way across the pond to my desk soon!


Say hello!

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

You are commenting using your 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 )

Connecting to %s