Graphic by Nate Barton
A well-written email for any situation is an example of how mature, serious and classic its writer is. It establishes credibility and gives a chance for the writer to exemplify his or her writing skills. Although writing letters can be seen as a lost art in the tech-driven world that is 2017, the email provides a link from past to present, and separates the good communicators from the great communicators of today.
Although emails may not be the most popular form of communication, they serve a purpose, especially in work and scholastic settings. That being said, though, it’s easy, especially today, when many are used to two-word replies and shorthand on a regular basis. But the email is the modern-day letter, so it is important to know the implications that this title carries.
Now let’s take it back again to high school English: Emails establish your ethos or credibility. A well-written and well-thought-out email establishes this ethos.
An email that catches the eye and stays in the memory of a reader should contain the following components: a subject, a proper address of the person to whom the email is being sent, the reason for sending the email in a concise manner, and a proper closing; all with appropriate grammar, spelling and punctuation. In addition, a well-written email contains a beginning, middle, and an end, sort of like an essay that has an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion, according to the article “An Editor’s Guide to Writing Ridiculously Good Emails,” published in the Daily Muse by Erin Greenawald. Proofreading is also a must, Greenawald continued, suggesting one should consider how he or she would feel if the email went public and the entire world was able to read it.
In a world where a good portion of communication is done by utilizing tiny pictures of cats and glitter, the email has taken the place of the letter. Although words are being handwritten less and less, a well-written email separates the good from the great on any platform, and shows just how serious and motivated the sender is.
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