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Monday, February 7, 2011

Use Your Words: Learn to Write the Perfect Love Letter for Your Sweetie on Valentine's Day

Posted on Mon, Feb 7, 2011 at 4:18 PM

You can do better! - SHERIW / FLICKR
  • SheriW / Flickr
  • You can do better!

As Valentine's Day creeps nearer, do the heart-shaped candy boxes in the drugstore speak to you? Sure they do. They say things like "last minute" and "cheap bastard." How about the TV ads for high-end (and also heart-shaped) jewelry? Yep. They say "overdoing it" and "payment plan" (not to mention "gaudy"). And Etsy? You bet: "Heart drawn in red Sharpie on soda-can fragment." Go ahead, admit it. You want to do something for your sweetie, but something genuine, not contrived or thoughtless.

Janet Gallin (left) and Tresa Eyres are the Love Letter Squad.
  • Janet Gallin (left) and Tresa Eyres are the Love Letter Squad.

So write a letter.

"Handwriting is magic," says Janet Gallin, who co-hosts How to Write a Perfect Love Letter on Wednesday night with Tresa Eyres. The two women call themselves the Love Letter Squad. They offer workshops, podcasts, and until recently a weekly radio show on the now-stifled KUSF. (Ouch!)

The squad covers choosing a recipient, identifying what you feel, and expressing it in your own voice. They also go through the various ways to dress it up - literally - via stationery, envelopes, stamps, and seals. "Every part of a love letter expresses something you want to say," says Gallin.

This skill goes beyond V Day. Gallin says people write "love letters" year round to various recipients, including exes and parents (to apologize or forgive), animals, and historical figures - one woman even wrote to her shuttered retail shop, which she missed terribly. ("She was my best friend," the woman reportedly said of the store.) Bring your own stationery and postage - the final step of the workshop is sending the letter.

How to Write the Perfect Love Letter starts at 7 p.m. at the Bazaar Cafe. Admission is free.

For more events in San Francisco this week and beyond, check out our calendar section.

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