Strategy 6 - Paper 2 transactional letter

Artykuły

This lesson is devoted to writing a transactional letter. Try not to get overloaded with the amount of information below. Try to get back to it from time to time and remember about the general rules: Who to? Why? What? You are supposed to write. These three will ensure you success J

In Paper 2, Writing, Part 1 – transactional letter, you read one or more texts and then write a letter based on the information given. You are required to deal with input material of up to 250 words, which may include graphic and pictorial material. Texts may include advertisements, extracts from letters, postcards, diaries, short articles, etc. You must read the instructions and texts very carefully, as they will tell you who you are writing to, why you are writing and what the main points in your letter should be. Your letter should be 120 -150 words long.

It is important that you cover all the essential points of the input in your answer. You should be aware that the overall aim of the task is to achieve a positive effect on the target reader. Some evidence of range of language is also required, which means building on key words from the input rather than lifting whole segments.

 

Below you will find some points worth remembering when answering the transactional letter task:

1        You don\'t have to write any addresses or telephone numbers.

2        Use a proper beginning (e.g. Dear John,) and ending (e.g. Best wishes,).

3        You shouldn\'t copy whole sections from the text.

4        You can add sensible ideas, but not unnecessary information.

5        Your style needn\'t be very formal, even in a letter to a company.

6        Use the present simple for permanent situations, repeated events and natural / scientific laws.

7        Use the present continuous for temporary situations, changes and annoying things.

 

This list shows some of the possible variations in Writing Part 1, both in the task itself (ac) and in your outcome (df):

a Number of texts:         one;     two;     three;

b Notes:                          linked to text;   separate from text;    none  

c Text type(s):                         advert;   letter;    postcard;    diary;    note;    timetable;    notice;   article;    other;

d Text by:                               company;    stranger;    friend;   relative;    other;  

e Your writing style:       formal;    semi-formal;    informal;  

f  Your writing aim:         inform;   request information;    complain;   suggest;    other.

 

Here is the summery of  advice about writing transactional letters in points:

1        In the first paragraph, say why you are writing.

2        Organize your letter into suitable paragraphs.

3        Use a style that is right for the reader, the reason for writing and the content.

4        Write in full sentences, even if the texts use note form in places.

5        Try to use your own words, although you can build on key words in the text.

6        Deal with all the main points in the text, plus any notes.

7        Tick each of the points and notes as you mention them in your letter.

8        You can add relevant information, requests or suggestions of your own.

9        If you are writing to complain, end by saying what you want the reader to do.

 

 

Below you will find some steps to follow when writing the transactional letter:

Before you write:

         Analyse the task.

         Use your analysis and the instructions to decide on the appropriate style and aim.

         Highlight the key words in the letter and the handwritten notes.

         Make a plan, with a purpose for each paragraph.

         Note down some useful expressions.

While you write:

         Check that you are following the advice above.

         Show your ability to use a range of language, both structures and vocabulary.

After you write:

§         Check that you have followed the instructions exactly, that there aren\'t any obvious grammar, spelling or punctuation mistakes and that your letter begins and ends suitably. Will it have a positive effect on the reader, do you think?

 

 

And finally here is a sample task together with the answer.

 

The task:


The answer to the task:

 

Dear Sir/Madam,

In response to your request for information about Weightaway tablets, I am writing to tell you about my experience.

I am always looking for ways to lose weight and the advertisement for Weightaway made it sound ideal for me. I eat too much but I hate exercise and I found the idea of losing weight just by taking tablets very attractive.

So far, however, I seem to have lost no weight at all. After I take the tablet with my breakfast I feel sick for the rest of the morning. This certainly reduces my appetite, but I consider it to be a very unpleasant effect. Furthermore, by about 6 o\'clock in the evening I am extremely hungry and sometimes eat even more than usual. As for exercise, the tablets make me too tired to move at all.

I have nearly finished the tablets 1 bought and I think 1 am even more overweight than before. I strongly advise your readers not to waste their money on this product.

Yours faithfully,

 


TEST

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