Writing in 'letter circles'


There was a post on Hacker News a few days ago about an idea for a 'Letter Circle', in which people exchange longer messages ('letters', whatever they are):

At one point, there were long form letters exchanged between experts in their field. Artists and writers would write to one another and share their latest struggles. Scientists would exchange notes on problems and theories. Many transformative intellectual works of the 18th and 19th centuries were at least in some manner influenced by letter writing. It was how specialists found peers in a geographically dispersed world.

Having participated in versions of this, particularly during the early blogging era, there’s something uniquely generative about being forced to explain yourself in long form text. And there’s something healing and inspiring when peers respond with care and understanding.

The Letter Circle by Daniel Cook, 26 February 2023.