Chapter 9 of Markel discusses letters, memos, and email messages. If your experience will be anything like mine, you will probably write more email messages than any other kind of correspondence in your day-to-day work.
Types of Correspondence
The table in the textbook on p. 219 outlines the differences between types of correspondence. Use the information there as a guideline, but also pay attention to the practices where you work. It’s completely possible for one company to rely on formal letters and another company to rely almost exclusively on email messages. There is no universal right decision. Instead, there are decisions that are right because they match a company’s or organization’s standard practices. Let the company’s practices and culture be your guide.
Remember that the “Writer’s Checklist” (pp. 238-239) gives you a nice summary of the important concepts in the chapter. If you are writing the optional memo for Project 2, be sure to use the Memos section of the checklist as you write and revise.
Using You Attitude
You Attitude is the concept of focusing on the needs and interests of the reader in technical and business writing. It’s all about seeing things from the audience’s perspective and situating information so that readers understand and accept it.
The textbook has a short explanation on pp. 220–221, and you can find more information in “What Is the ‘You Attitude’?”
After reading the chapter, complete the reading quiz in Canvas for Chapter 9.
Photo: Invitation letter by John S. Quarterman, on Flickr