Today is National Handwriting Day. As someone who often writes with a pen or pencil, I'm already a fan of the way writing by hand makes me think (and write) differently. I alternate between pen or pencil, and keyboard, throughout the day. I do most of my note taking, pre-writing and drafting with a pen, and produce most final copy on a keyboard.

Lately, as I move away from Facebook and Twitter because of privacy issues and the general ad-driven emphasis on sensation over sense, I'm moving back towards "slow media," writing letters and cards, posting to blogs, and more personalized forms of communication.

InCoWriMo, or International Correspondence Writing Month, is about "vintage social media," as the InCoWriMo Website notes. The basic idea is that for the month of February participants write a care or letter (postcards count!) every day, with a goal of sending 28 during the month of February.

I'm going to participate this year, though I may not write a letter or postcard every day, I will do my best to hit the total of 28 for the month. There's a lot of flexibility, as the InCoWriMo FAQs point out; basically, you want to hit the total of 28 notes, cards, or letters, and you want to deliver them all (whether by hand, postal service or pigeon) and they all have to be hand-written. There's a lot of help on the InCoWriMo site, including How To Write A Letter.

This is a great opportunity to write a beloved, a family member, to send a thank you to someone who has been kind, or who needs some kindness, to thank your mail carrier, your librarian, that bookstore employee who always has good book recommendations, the barista who makes your coffee perfectly, the co-worker who supports you, a teacher who made a difference, a writer whose book you love. Here's a list of InCoWriMo suggestions from Goulet Pens.

A simple thank you note can change a person's day.

Who's up for the challenge? (If you want a postcard from me, PM me your address).