Tuesday, April 15, 2008

My new project

On a lighter note (to balance out the subject of my last post), I want to tell you about a new personal project I'm working on -- one I'm very excited about, maybe because it has nothing to do with parenting, or magazine writing, or book writing. It's a much-needed diversion all in the name of personal enrichment. 

First, let me give you some background:

When you were young, did you ever have a pen pal? In second grade, I wrote back and forth with a girl in New York City. I wish I could remember her name, but all I can recall is that she lived in a cluttered apartment in Brooklyn (I know, because she sent a photo) with two cats. At the time, I couldn't believe that a girl could live in a big apartment building in the city. No yard? No garden? No place to ride a bike? I learned a lot that year. 

So, I wondered recently: Why couldn't I try the whole pen pal thing again as an adult? Could I find a woman in another country, perhaps, who would be willing to write each other letters for a year via a blog that we'd share? What could we learn from each other -- two strangers -- about friendship and life and happiness through the experience?

And, halfway across the globe, Valentina Russo, a woman in Marseille, France, as decided to give it a try and become grownup, modern-day pen pals. Like me, Valentina is 30, and works in the communications/media field. But unlike me, she speaks five languages (her English is fluent, and adorable at the same time!) and not a mother yet, and wondering if it's in her future. She also seems to have a certain zest for life that I admire -- and this is apparent only from our first few letters. I think we have a lot to learn from each other, and we've made a commitment to write frequently for a year. 

Want to read along and see our friendship unfold? Our blog is called Franglish. Stop by and send us some love! 


Alisa said...

I loooove your new project! How did you and Valentina find each other?

k/ kpublicrelations.com said...

What a fab idea! Can't wait to read the friendship unfurl...

Flores Online said...

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Lori said...

I’m so curious about your new project, Franglish. I had three pen-pals growing up and it was thrilling whenever I’d get a letter. I have a few questions – please share! How did you come up with the idea? Blog pals could become a blogging phenomena. It’s brilliant. How did you find Valentina? Why did you choose to make it a blog for the world to see? What concerns do you have about being real and sharing and allowing Valentina to get to know the real you vs. keeping some things private? (Things you would probably share with her through paper letters but don’t want to put on the internet.) Are you going to mind if other bloggers duplicate this project and find their own blog-pals?

Sarah said...

Hi Lori, and everyone! Thanks for your comments! I found Valentina by doing some serious searching (I promise, I am not a stalker!),and finally found her profile on MySpace. I think it was kind of fateful that we found each other, though, as silly as that may sound. We decided to make it a blog, because it would be good motivation to keep writing, plus we felt that we both were dealing with things in our lives that others might be able to relate to, too. Your questions are great! I will have to put an FAQ section on Franglish to share more. :)