Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Start a Christmas Tradition à la Tolkien

After dropping off books at the library this week, I scanned the titles in the holiday display. Naturally, one called out to me and I couldn’t ignore it. I took home J. R. R. Tolkien’s Letters from Father Christmas.

You don’t have to be part of the Tolkien cult to enjoy this book. It’s a collection of letters and illustrations (and thereby characters and fonts) Tolkien created and sent to his children each Christmas season from 1920 to 1942—letters his wee ones understood to have been written by Father Christmas (or by his elves or his executive assistant, Polar Bear).

F. C. seems a tad cranky to me so far in my reading. Nonetheless, I can imagine what it must feel like to be a kid writing to Saint Nicholas each year, knowing that he will soon respond.

If you have small children or grandchildren, this could be a delightful family tradition to start. Check out the book for ideas, then adapt these to your own writing style and to the Father Christmas you want your progeny to admire.

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