David shared some thoughts on our month of letters. I find the format similarly constraining, but part of what I enjoy has been how the conversation has to be different as a result.

Each letter is shorter than addressing everything could be. And we often have to let a thought from the other person drive by or fizzle out, lest the letters end up endless bullet points hopelessly attempting to recreate synchronous conversations.

As bandwidth increased, the internet moved us from asynchronous by default to synchronous by default. We went from websites, journals, blogs, and forums to feeds and streams.

I kind of like the idea of finding a different resting place than the heights of Facebook and Twitter for my own communication. That’s part of why I blog. Letters, in many ways, has been a project to have a different kind of communication, facilitated by blogging, that I don’t always get as a result of writing here. I’m lucky if a post gets one reply. Long posts almost never get any kind of response. That’s fine– but part of what I want out of blogging is for other people to write about things that I’m writing about and vice versa. A broad, loose “conversation” that isn’t a direct exchange, but a diffuse space with lots of folks contributing thoughts and ideas about similar things that I’m interested in.

Letters is not quite that, but it’s helping me to exercise that possibility.