I’m no expert in formal writing. In fact, I hate to write formal text because I usually spend up to 30 minutes on a letter or an email, just to make sure there are no errors. I really hate to make writing mistakes. Everyone is prone to mistakes, we are only human, and I have come to terms with that but there are certain mistakes that are unforgivable and are avoidable with just a little extra attention to detail.
There is no excuse in making any of the following mistakes:
1. Incorrectly spelled name:
I’ve been addressed as Adenika, Adenke and many a variation of my beautiful name “ADENIKE”. My name is clearly written in my email signature, heck my email address has my first name and last name but a lot of people can’t be bothered to ensure that a name is spelled right. I recently read an email sent to a Mr. Dogo, the salutation said “Dear Dog”. I cringe again just thinking about it. I cannot over emphasized this – there is absolutely no excuse whatsoever for misspelling a name in a formal letter or email.
2. Spelling errors:
“A book of condolence will be opened in honour of the diseased” …. not to make light of the situation but I would not like to sign a condolence book for the diseased. The misspelled word completely takes away from the somber situation.
3. No word abbreviations:
“Ask for pictures & u will get it”.. this statement is wrong on so many levels. Not only is it rude, it’s sounds like it was written by an uneducated individual. Add that to the use of ‘&’ and ‘u’ and you don’t need a soothsayer to tell that this letter ended up in the bin.
4. Avoid weirdness:
Sounds vague but let me explain. You address a letter to a Victoria and write the salutation as “Dear Sir”…if this isn’t avoidable weirdness, I don’t know what is. The name Victoria is obviously female so what’s your excuse? If in doubt “Dear Victoria” is the safest way to go. Avoid “Dear Sir/Madam” like it’s the plague.
Remember that auto-correct or spell check does not always “catch” all the errors in a document. Take time out to re-read any formal text before it’s sent out.
I’ve been experiencing bloggers block – I don’t know if that’s a real thing but that’s what I have been going through. I get an inspiration for what I think would be worthy of writing down then just as I put pen to paper (or finger to electronic device😄), I decide my thoughts would not make a good post. Go figure! Anyway, I’ve decided to make an effort and this is the first installment in a series of posts titled “Rantings”. Hopefully I’ll be back in good form after letting out some steam.
Wish me luck!!!