I’m a life-long pen pal, and certain pen pals say they want “long letter” pals. This does not (usually) mean the person wants to exchange 10 page letters, but that they are not interested in brief letters that only contain superficial thoughts about the weather. They want letters with more effort and depth, that are more than “I did this and I did that” but also share thoughts/ideas, and interact with the letter received.
However, it is not necessarily the length of a letter that makes it worthwhile. Over the years, I’ve received a variety of letters. I’ve gotten letters that were:
very long but Iow quality
brief letters that were high quality.
For example, very long letters that were nothing but monologue – “I did this and I did that” with no dialogue whatsoever. These letters can read more like a diary entry, a record of what someone has done, and lack a personal touch. Even after receiving such letters for a while, the person remains a stranger to me. I know what they have done, but not who they are.
And then there are letters much briefer by comparison, but are a blend of personal news, responding to the letter received with thoughts or questions, and sharing personal feelings or ideas about something in life. After receiving such letters for a while, I feel like I am really getting to know this person. In other words, a friendship is developing! I have a sense of who they are as a person.
So…perhaps the point is to not get hung up on the length of a letter, but to keep quality in mind as well. I’d rather receive 3 page personal letters where a friendship is growing, than 10 page letters where the person remains a stranger.