Letters of Note

Correspondence deserving of a wider audience

Latest articles

Am I really writing it at all?

Author Raymond Chandler was born in Chicago in 1888, and to this day remains one of the greats in the world of crime fiction thanks to his creation of Philip Marlowe, the hardboiled detective who stars in many of his stories: The Big Sleep (1939), Farewell, My Lovely (1940), The High Window (1942), The Lady in the Lake (1943), The Little Sister (1949),...

Better Letters of Note

Dear all, It gives me untold amounts of pleasure to announce that the Letters of Note website has been given its first facelift since I naively launched it in 2009 using a bog-standard Blogger template. I would like to thank, profusely but from a very safe distance, the patient team of wizards over at Automattic for delicately moving 11-years-worth...

It is only a matter of time

On September 12th of 2011, the New York Times published an article by Dr. Abigail Zuger in which she criticised certain supposedly unrealistic aspects of Contagion, Steven Soderbergh's recently released and widely lauded thriller in which a deadly pandemic sweeps the globe. In response, a week later the following letter reached the newspaper, penned...

Letters in Need

Hello,I'm feeling pretty helpless at the moment, as I'm sure you are too. I'm especially worried about the countless people--many elderly and vulnerable--who now find themselves isolated in their homes, alone, unable to see friends and family, some facing months with very little human contact, if any at all.At the risk of furthering their suffering,...

God be with you till we meet again

On September 29th, 1918, months before the end of World War I, a freshly assigned physician at Camp Devens military base in Massachusetts wrote the following letter to a friend and fellow doctor, and described a terrifying influenza epidemic that was now killing hundreds of his camp's soldiers each day. The death toll in this single camp would go on...

STUFF

Dear all,I've neglected you all. I'm so sorry. In my defence, I've been busy, beavering away on a gorgeous new series of Letters of Note books. These will be smaller than the original doorstoppers, books you will be able to carry comfortably without a harness, each on a different theme. The first four titles to be published areLETTERS OF NOTE: LOVELETTERS...

How the hell have you done it?

On April 18th of 1961, it was announced that iconic Hollywood star Gary Cooper was dying of cancer after a glittering 36 year career that saw him amass countless fans, plaudits, and awards across the globe. Weeks after that news broke, and just days before he died, Cooper received the following fan letter from Kirk Douglas, who at the time was producing...

There is no danger down here

On October 31st, 1918, as the First World War neared its end, celebrated war poet and officer of the Second Manchesters Wilfred Owen wrote home to his mother. Sadly, this would be his last letter. Four days later--exactly a century ago--Owen was shot dead as he led his company across the Sambre–Oise Canal. His mother was informed of his death a week...

LETTERS LIVE LOS ANGELES

Hello all,Do you live in or around L.A.? If so, you are duty-bound to attend Letters Live on February 26th at the historic Ace Hotel Theatre in Downtown Los Angeles for what will be our first public show in the U.S. It promises to be an incredible evening: talented performers bringing to life letters from throughout the ages in one of the city's most...

It’s the trip of a lifetime

In the early hours of July 21st, 1969, shortly after the Apollo Lunar Module landed on its surface, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to step foot on the Moon. 28 years later, Buzz wrote a letter to Barry Goldman, a professor at the University of Maryland.Transcript follows.(Many thanks to Benjamin Cole.)TranscriptSeptember 25,...

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