Valentine’s Day is tomorrow, and whether you love the love or take a more cynical approach to the holiday, you cannot deny that it is an important part of our culture.
Before Valentine’s Day became quite the commercial success it is today, it was very popular–and expected–to create hand-written sentiments, cards, or letters for your loved one(s). Today, it is leass common, so stick out to your valentine and do something unexpected–make a hand-written card.
When trying to come up with an original valentine, it can be easy to fall into the cliches of “roses are red, violets are blue.” You can stay away from this by creating an original rhyme of your own or by expressing a specific reason you love or care about the recipient: “I love the way you are obsessed with Harry Potter” or “Your laugh when you’re embarrassed is what first drew me to you.” The more specific the better. Show your loved one that you really pay attention to what makes them who they are.
After you create a rough draft of your valentine, show it around to some of your friends and get feedback. Does this sound too cheesy? Does this sound too cliche? Getting feedback on your work can give you a sense of how your loved one will react to their card, while also giving you the benefit of an extra pair of eyes to catch any mistakes.
Editing and revision are very important elements in any part of writing, but especially in a love letter or card. If you leave an obvious grammatical error in such a personal piece of writing, it can give the impression that you don’t care enough about the card’s recipient to edit and look over your work. On the other hand, by editing and revising your card–no matter how short–you prove that you are willing to spend the extra time on making sure your gift is perfect for you loved one.
After editing, create the final version of your card or letter and give it to your loved one. They will more than appreciate the thought, time, and effort put into your gift.
Have a lovely Valentine’s Day, everyone.
This post was originally published on February 13, 2014.