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Thread: What do you write in your first letter ?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    France
    Posts
    92

    Cool What do you write in your first letter ?

    Hey !

    I thought I've already seen this topic on this forum but I couldn't find it via the search field so... I guess I've seen it somewhere else. If not, I'm sorry to create a duplicate !

    I wrote to two penpals for one and two years. I'm going to write to two new penpals and I'm wondering : what do write in your first letter ? Do you make it short or long ? Do you introduce yourself ? Do you ask questions ? Do send a photo ?

    When I wrote to my two penpals, I wrote in my first letter I was contacting then after seeing their ad on WAP and I was introducing me. This morning, I was wondering if mentioning WAP in the first letter was a good idea or not in this topic. In my new letters, I won't mention it.

    I'm about to write my two first letter and... I'm afraid to be boring ^_^ First letter is the worse !

    Thanks for sharing your experience

  2. #2
    DAI Guest

    Default Re: What do you write in your first letter ?

    I had a little look back, having considered the whole 'do you write about yourself thing' and how to begin a letter to someone you've never written to before, and came up with this first paragraph from the end of February. It's a first letter, the whole was about four pages or 2300 words, there is little about me, more about interests and surroundings, impressions and daily life.

    "The first church bells begin ringing at ten in the morning, waking the local inhabitants of this small town from their righteous slumbers, reminding them that there was once, a very long time ago, a requirement to dress and make their way into the various buildings dedicated to some form of higher deity. Countless believers ? if that is the right term, since attendance was obligatory and not a matter of choice ? would dress in their finest Sunday clothes, and struggle to one of the two or three ? there are now four ? churches in the centre of town, or in the neighbouring villages. Their chosen clothes had several functions: the main one was clearly to create the right impression in the church on a Sunday; family festivals such as weddings, baptisms an funerals; the Sunday trip into town to have their photographs taken."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    29

    Default Re: What do you write in your first letter ?

    My first letter was a long time ago so I don't remember the details, but I remember introducing myself, age, nationality, where I was living, etc. Spoke about what I did in my life (studies, hobbies, travels and such). And a bit about my family. That's about it. I did send a picture too

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Delft, Netherlands
    Posts
    1,328

    Default Re: What do you write in your first letter ?

    I always introduce myself, let them know why I chose them, tell something about my work, hobbies, life, family, pets and ask a lot of questions and usually I send a picture along.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: What do you write in your first letter ?

    I introduced myself, told them about my work and what I enjoyed getting up to. I also told them about my weird and wonderful pet collection.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    France
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: What do you write in your first letter ?

    Hello !

    I'm sorry I'm only answering now, I had a crazy week. I'm going to write my first letters tomorrow and I'm both excited with the idea to be a penpal again and stressed because I always feel like I'm saying stupid and non interesting things in my first letters.

    Thanks for your answers and inspiration !

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    USA
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    483

    Default Re: What do you write in your first letter ?

    I generally try to be overly funny. I typically choose to write people who do not have advertisements posted so I try to give them a reason to write back 8/10 times it works

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: What do you write in your first letter ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pom View Post
    Hey !

    I thought I've already seen this topic on this forum but I couldn't find it via the search field so... I guess I've seen it somewhere else. If not, I'm sorry to create a duplicate !

    I wrote to two penpals for one and two years. I'm going to write to two new penpals and I'm wondering : what do write in your first letter ? Do you make it short or long ? Do you introduce yourself ? Do you ask questions ? Do send a photo ?

    When I wrote to my two penpals, I wrote in my first letter I was contacting then after seeing their ad on WAP and I was introducing me. This morning, I was wondering if mentioning WAP in the first letter was a good idea or not in this topic. In my new letters, I won't mention it.

    I'm about to write my two first letter and... I'm afraid to be boring ^_^ First letter is the worse !

    Thanks for sharing your experience

    I keep my first letter to about 1 page. I introduce myself and tell them a little about myself, such as what music/books/movies I like, a mention about my military career. I do mention that I saw their ad on WAP, and so far it has not been a problem. Generally if the mention of a pen pal site would prevent letters from being delivered, the inmate will state such on their ad. I've mostly seen such warnings on ads for inmates in maximum security prisons such as Pelican Bay and Kern Valley. But if you choose not to mention WAP, then I'm pretty sure the inmates can figure out where you got their address. Speaking of addresses, I always include my address at the bottom of my 1st letter. In every letter I also write the inmate's last name and DOC # on the top of the pages and on the back of each picture. I do this because pages and pictures can get separated, and if the missing page is found, they may not be able to figure out who the page belongs to. As for pictures, sometimes I'll send one with my 1st letter, but it's more common for me to wait until the 2nd.

    I tend not to ask questions in my first letter. I wait until they respond- the inmates will be the ones to initiate the questions, which I then answer, and ask questions of my own. I do not ask them questions about their crimes and convictions unless and until they bring up the subject. This is because 1) the inmate may not want to talk about it because it is hurtful to them; 2) the inmate may feel like they are being judged when asked such questions, or 3) the inmate may be appealing the conviction and cannot discuss the subject for fear of jeopardizing their case.

    Don't worry about being boring- the first letter is just an introduction. When you meet someone for the first time out in public, I doubt you bombard them with fine details about your life- treat the first letter to your new pen pal the same way. Once they reply to you, then it's full speed ahead!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Location
    Czech Republic
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: What do you write in your first letter ?

    Quote Originally Posted by vynte View Post
    ............I've mostly seen such warnings on ads for inmates in maximum security prisons such as Pelican Bay and Kern Valley..........
    Oh no I recently sent my first letter to Pelican Bay and mentionet WAP! Does anyone have more information about preventing letters from being delivered to Pelican Bay or similar prisons?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: What do you write in your first letter ?

    Quote Originally Posted by miss.revenge View Post
    Oh no I recently sent my first letter to Pelican Bay and mentionet WAP! Does anyone have more information about preventing letters from being delivered to Pelican Bay or similar prisons?
    Depending upon where in the prison the inmate is housed, he might still receive it. Did you send him your first letter through the WAP email, or did you send him a snail mail letter? Typically for maximum security prisons, I will send a snail mail letter with no mention of WAP.

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