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Blog > Introducing the Monthly Writing Prompts

Do you also feel like the best postcards we receive are often the ones that are completely filled with thoughts? When the text is so long and interesting that words start spilling into the address side of the postcard, grabbing our attention for a moment longer… Those tend to be the ones that truly connect us to another place and another person, beyond the standard “Hello, my name is…”

That said, we know coming up with interesting subjects for writing on your postcards can be hard. Sometimes we’re not particularly inspired, or we’re tired at the end of the day or we might feel like there’s just not that much to say. If you struggle with what to write on your postcards, we’re starting an experiment today that might help — we’re calling them the “monthly writing prompts”.

Here’s how it goes: in the beginning of the month we’ll publish a post suggesting a topic, and if you’d like, you can use this topic as a starting point for the messages on the postcards you send that month. Please note that the suggested theme is 100% optional and meant as a suggestion only. If you already know what you want to write about or the recipient gives you some tips of what they’d like to hear from you, that’s wonderful… but just in case you need ideas, we’re here to help!

Ok, so here’s the topic for the inaugural month of these prompts, as suggested by ColourfulCourtney on the forum:

In November, write about something that makes you smile.

This is one of my favourite topics to write on postcards, actually! Things that make you smile have a big chance of bringing a smile to someone else’s face, so it’s nice to share them. Incidentally, this theme reminds me of Maria singing about her favourite things on The Sound of Music, which reminds me of musicals… which is one of the things that puts a smile on my face! 😊  I could definitely write about all my favourite musicals, and all the songs I know by heart…

You get the idea, right? Just pick something that makes you smile and share it with your recipient. Be specific and elaborate on it as much as you’d like. Let’s fill November’s postcards with stories and meaningful messages and spread some smiles all around. Have a great month, everyone!

PS – Have ideas for more prompts? Feel free to share them on this forum thread! Remember that the forum requires a separate login from that of the Postcrossing website, so if you have not created an account there, you will need to do so in order to use it.



35 comments so far

Woordenstroomwaanzin, Netherlands
Nice idea! I'll use it :)

ileanatr, United States of America
This is a great idea and I love this month's prompt! Sometimes I have a hard time coming up with something to write on the postcards I send out.

NIDUSKA, Finland
good idea

Flippie, Canada
Hi, I love it, because a day without a smile is a day without life!

postmuse, United States of America
Fabulous idea! And maybe I’ll find something specific about the postcard i’m sending that makes me smile and write about that. Thank you ☔️🌹🐱📦

Cavana, Germany
I really like that idea. Often you read a profile and immediately you know what to write about. But sometimes, (especially with empty profiles) it's hard to think about something to write about. I will definitly use those prompts on some cards!!!!

ovidius, Romania
Great idea. Looking forward to read about more prompts themes in the future..

Merle13, Germany
It's a lovely idea and I am looking forward to each prompt being published in the next few months. :)

Ramya, United States of America
I love prompts! I’ll be sure to put the monthly prompts on a card over my desk. Here are some suggestions for the future: How do you spread kindness? What do others say (or do) that encourages you during hard times? Where is your happy place? ... keep on mailing, Ramya

Sheshells, South Africa
Excellent idea! Thank you for the initiative and starting of with something so positive :) will definitely may use of this.

wisemonkeysabroad, Australia
Love writing prompts :) This will be fun!!

Savagepink, United States of America
Great idea! How about fixing it so the prompt appears when you submit a request to Send A Card? It would be so cool if lots of people starting writing about the prompt!

meiadeleite, Portugal
@Savagepink It's a good idea!

We thought we'd take it easy in the first few months though, see how it goes and whether people feel this is something that should be kept in the long run. If it goes well, we'll work out how to spread the word about it! 😊

Kathymack, United States of America
This will be such a fun way to share our postcards. I love the idea. A prompt could be something I'm grateful for, a childhood (good) memory, our favorite place, favorite quote. Thank you so much.

kala, United States of America
The monthly writing prompts is a great idea! Thanks for sharing and looking forward to sharing and reading future writing prompts.

_samy_, India
Next months prompt could be about festivals...after all unity is in diversity. .

Alegna79, Netherlands
Great idea! Yesterday I send already 5 postcards without these prompt, but the next cards I will use it!

juliakay, United States of America
This is really great! Another prompt: "what is it about Postcrossing that makes you the happiest?" (Could be the stamps, the messages, sending a card, receiving a perfect card, someone drawing a picture, etc.)

KAS, Norway
Still not a fan of this idea. Will be sure to let you know if suddenly all my received cards are about the same thing ;-)

meiadeleite, Portugal
@KAS Please do let us know! I'm sure it won't be nearly that popular, but it's just an experiment — if it gets boring or doesn't work, we can always backtrack or change tactics!

ctr, Germany
I like the experiment although I never have difficulties to fill the space on cards... ;) I often write why I choose the card or what you see on it and the stamp or thoughts about the image of the card.
But now I am curious what other postcrossers will write to me this month.

butterflycard, Malaysia
A postcard is a very small place to write a message unless additional features are added to a card.

Sfander, Canada
I've been blessed with the gift of the gab and have no problem putting my thoughts down in ink, but I do think there are some that might really appreciate the prompts. As of late, I have had some very pretty postcards with, sadly, a lot of empty backs. Best wishes for success with the prompts..

postcardgal, United States of America
I love writing to a prompt. I have led writing groups in my office and it has been so rewarding for all! Sometimes I find it very beneficial to simply write to the prompt of the "picture" on the card. It is fun and engaging with my new post crossing friend! I LOVE this whole idea, fun and inspirational! "Post Card Gal"

Copperplate, United Kingdom
I think it's nice to give people the option, but I always seem to have a lot of ideas to write anyway! Sorry to anyone who gets a card from me that doesn't have a prompt on it! I love Postcrossing so am never short of ideas :)

Saviera, Germany
Great idea! I'm looking forward to send those postcard :)

gmansocal, United States of America
Excellent! I love sending cards where I run out of space. But there are times I sit trying to come up with something to say. Small suggestion: draw a smile. Even if there is a small language issue everyone knows what a smile is. : )

DM5088, South Africa
Hi, I will tell you my ritual when I am going to send a postcard...
First I take out my cards and stamps.
Second, I request an address - which also have its own ritual...
I go to the profile, read what they are interested in, check all the cards
they have received from my country, and then all the cards that they
like from my country. If none, I look at the cards they like, and see
what I have that is similar...
Third, I copy the address to my file to print the sticker
Fourth, I start writing, normally about myself (trending now is the fact that I am going to be a grandma for the first time - which make me smile whenever I think about it). Else I write about my country, the geography, the culture or about the image on the card.
Fifth I scan both sides of the card (for reference if I receive a comment on what I wrote)
Sixth I upload my image.

With this ritual, I hardly ever have nothing to write about....
But I am for sure going to follow your hints as well..

jelikweyh, Malaysia
everytime i write the postcards , i always used the address side to write more . and my sibling said to me "hey , you should write a letter than a postcard". lol . usually i will tell about myself at first , following with what books/movies i am/just reading/watch , followed by things that currently happen in my life which is either up or down and at the final part i will tell him/her things that he/she and me have in common .

it just because i don't like to receive the cards with bigger font of "Hello,greetings from _____ . Happy postcrossing!" . it's too boring , you know ! unless they put too many stamps ( even i'm not a philatelist , but i just like people gave me a bunch of old stamps/limited edition stamps . and of course i know that the sender is philatelist . you need more space to put the stamps if you make the words less ) .

sometimes i tried to persuade myself that he/she not good in english , and they might be afraid that i won't understand if they used their own language . whatever it is , i enjoy to write the cards , read the cards and look at the handwriting from around the world .

Tranchile, Guernsey
Could people perhaps put what the postcard is of. Sometimes I get some beautiful buildings or places from a country and I get on the back ‘Happy Postcrossing’ or ‘I hope you get this’ I would like to sometimes look up on Google or such like to find out a bit more about the card I have received but sadly not all cards have the details printed of the view and not all people tell me anything about it. I have no problem writing either about the card I send or what the person prefers to have written on their card.

flora-nova, United States of America
That's a wonderful idea and will definitely use it. While I enjoy learning about other countries & culture, I truly appreciate those cards where the sender expresses something about their personal thoughts. This is a great way to inspire more of this type of exchange. Thank you for starting this!

nikki_amor, United States of America
Wonderful idea!
Hmmm... a possible writing prompt....

OH! What is one thing on your bucket list that you want to accomplish?

mapa, Belgium
nice idea! will certainly use it.

meisterlich, Germany
Truly love the idea, as I ALWAYS wonder what people would like to read on their postcard! Sometimes, I get inspiration from the person's profile or I just tell something about my country or a little about my day, but having kind of a guide would be awesome! I support Savagepink's suggestion; it would be great to see a monthly topic suggestion. It would be cool to see how others around the world would answer the same question... *hugs*

yelhsA, United States of America
really so in love with the list! sometimes I like to read a not-so-commonly written topic for a change, you know? among all the cards in my collection, the cards with unique messages tend to stand out for me. i'm definitely going to use these for inspiration so keep the prompts going! 👏🏼👏🏼

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