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“Golden Rules” for writing letters and memos
(from L. Jones and R. Alexander)
1. Give your letter a heading if it will help the reader to see at glance what you’re writing about.
2. Decide what you are going to say before you start to write or dictate: if you don’t do this the sentences are likely to go on and on until you can think of a good way to finish. In other words, always try to plan ahead.
3. Use short sentences.
4. Put each separate idea in a separate paragraph. Numbering each paragraph may help the reader to understand better.
5. Use short words that everyone can understand.
6. Think about your reader. Your reader…
… must be able to see exactly what you mean:
Your letters should be C L E A R
… must be given all the necessary information:
Your letters should be C O M P L E T E
… is likely to be a busy person with no time to waste:
Your letters should be C O N C I S E
… must be addressed in a sincere, polite tone:
Your letters should be C O U R T E O U S
… may get a bad impression if there are mistakes in grammar, punctuation and spelling:
Your letters should be C O R R E C T
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