Written by Jarett Wieselman, CNN
Have you ever cracked a Rubik’s Cube in an attempt to figure out a complex problem or remember a name? Have you lost track of a pencil file, trying to remember what’s important to you from last week?
If so, the Curious Correspondence Club (CCC) is for you.
For the last 10 years, you’ve could mail small marvels to CCC members around the country from The London Post Office , handmade by talented artisans in the CCC warehouse in the Coburg building in Wokingham, Berkshire. These beloved pieces of British design are now being sold on eBay and through independent art galleries, with some going for over $1,000.
Here’s how to join the CCC
So how do you join the club? Simple. Send in a drawing, drawing diary or recording of what you’re up to that day. Anything.
First, you’ll have to hand in your passport photos, driving license and national insurance number. CCC accepts cheques and bank transfers if they fall within the 25-30 pound range (about $28).
How do you find CCC members?
Enlarge Image Sallie Lafferty
We reached out to national CCC member Colin on behalf of CNN, and we were delighted to find this on his LinkedIn profile. He told us how he first heard about the club, from hearing a radio ad in London.
“The ad mentioned anyone who answers these questions correctly receives a drawing. So I replied to that and within a week was lucky enough to receive a drawing from a student in Liverpool, West Midlands.
“They described in detail the structural details of their house. I couldn’t have been more pleased!”
He’s now one of 200 members nationwide, with every city and town covered. Since he joined last September, he’s asked for a 50cm x 50cm drawing every two weeks. These were exactly the original drawings his friend gave him, with work inspired by the WW1 and WWII eras.
How much do they cost?
If you’d like to start writing letters to new members, the best way to do it is by sending in your drawing! When your letter reaches the CCC — now based in Wokingham — you’ll be sent a form to fill out. Those who have previously received a letter will also have the form sent to them, and other new members are asked to fill it out with their own writing.
The form goes on to ask you to provide the title of your letter, to which you must include your email address. In order to set up and maintain your account, you’ll need to provide this information again each time you send in a letter, once a month.
The next step is to give yourself a deadline. Start with Monday 24 April and if you haven’t sent in a letter by then, then you’ve missed the deadline. You can also add a date by adding a row of date for the next month. On the next page, you’ll be asked to select “Close receipt by” on the field which will give you an approximate delivery date.
The last stage is to fill in a card detailing the email address you’re adding to the CCC. This should have a space for your name and address. At the bottom of the card, give an explanation of what you’d like the letter to be addressed to. Give it a title so people can find you on the CCC mailing list.
This is the general ‘getting started’ message you’ll need to send to new members, along with an approximate delivery date. For new members, though, letters should be mailed within three days of receiving your letter.
If you do get a letter back, send it back to the address mentioned. When your letter arrives, the CCC will ask you to fill in a rough “mystery” letter and the code number, which you can use to enter your work online. Then you can enter that code on the CCC site, before submitting the file online.
If you want to continue to send letters, keep sending emails. In the coming weeks, the CCC will be inviting new members to join — when they’ll announce the new email addresses, so you need to send your data up front.