Unsolicited Letters of Recommendation


Through the Door by Kara Thurmond*

Today, I had the great pleasure of writing a letter of recommendation for a friend who is applying to graduate school.

I enjoyed this task so much, I’ve decided to make it a regular part of my job description. The trick is, since this opportunity doesn’t formally present itself very often, how to manufacture opportunities.

I intend to write unsolicited letters of recommendation.

Okay. How will that work?

My letters will arrive unexpectedly in the email inbox of a friend or family member. Maybe they will be vague and applicable to any pursuit. Maybe they will reference and hopefully encourage a long-held but unpursued goal that person has confided.

Probably they will simply be considered tokens of affection.

Part of my downsizing effort has been the inevitable reckoning of missed opportunities. Every unnecessary purchase, every neglected project, every unfulfilled plan: What if someone had provided a timely nudge at any of my crossroads and encouraged a different outcome for me. What if I could be the one to whisper a gentle reminder to reflect or finish or pursue.

I wish I were a poet (see my Purple Lamp doggerel for evidence of my lack of talent) then I could call my efforts “odes” and maybe they would be less novel, so to speak. Alas, prose will have to do.

This morning, it was utterly satisfying aiding in the accomplishment of my friend’s goal. Today, I guess I am more product than process.

Pursuit is worthy; completion renews.

*Please visit this wonderful artist’s website: http://www.karathurmond.com/pages/paintings.html


2 Responses to “Unsolicited Letters of Recommendation”

  1. Sydney Says:


  2. kara Says:

    Thanks Suzanne! I love this idea!

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