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The Basics of Letters - Teori Dasar Menulis Surat / Email

Memang, dalam Personal Letters (Surat Pribadi) seperti surat cinta untuk kekasih, mungkin tidak ada teori menulis secara pasti. Namun apapun jenis surat yang akan kita kirimkan, dasar-dasar penulisan surat wajib kita ketahui. Jika tidak, surat yang kita tulis, baik berupa surat biasa ataupun surat elektronik (email)  bisa-bisa tidak enak dibaca oleh penerima.

Untuk itu, mari kita pelajari teori dasar menulis surat dari Hanser (2006: 216-217) di bawah ini:

Merencanakan, Membuat Bagan, dan Merevisi

Dalam menulis surat ataupun email, hal terpenting paling pertama adalah merencanakan, membuat bagan dan merevisi surat, bahkan jika perlu meneliti terlebih dahulu sebelum menulis surat, seperti keterangan di bawah ini:

A letter or a letter-type e-mail is, essentially, no different from any other piece of writing. It requires planning, drafting, and revising. It may even require research. The same rules of style apply to it as to other texts. It should also be adapted in tone and style to the reader it is intended for.

Ringkas dan Lansung Pada Pokok Permasalahan

Secara umum rata-rata surat haruslah singkat, pendek dan langsung pada pokok permasalahan. Kecuali surat pribadi. Lihat keterangan berikut:

Most letters should be kept short and to the point. An exception might be made for personal letters—a friend might perhaps love to hear you ramble on or follow you as you catch thoughts on the wing and develop them haphazardly, and perhaps we can never have enough from someone we love or enough of news from home. But, if we accept that personal letters are now a rarity, and that letters are mainly written in a business context, then they ought to be businesslike.

Fungsi Surat

Surat bisa berfungsi sebagai media / alat yang membantu menyelesaikan urusan kita. Beberapa fungsi surat ini bisa berupa ekspresi pribadi, penyajian pribadi, dan iklan pribadi. Lihat keterangan berikut :

Some letters are means of self-expression, such as letters written to newspapers or magazines to air our views on particular subjects or share our feelings with other readers. Some are means of self-presentation or even of self-advertisement. 

Tentang Surat lamaran Kerja

Tentang surat lamaran kerja, baik bagi perusahaan ataupun pelamar kerja secara sederhana dijelaskan seperti di bawah ini: (Tuh kan Perusahaan harusnya tidak menyebar Lowongan Kerja??? :-))

It is not uncommon for companies and institutions to request an application letter when seeking employment, sometimes handwritten, because it enables them to make a basic assessment of you, the applicant. In particular, it enables them to find out whether you are literate and whether you possess essential communications skills. Do not dash off a letter, or any kind of communication, that could be used as evidence, so to speak, for or against you. Treat the writing of a letter or a formal e-mail as a serious writing task, take time to plan and prepare, and allow yourself a reasonable amount of time to edit and correct.

Whatever the purpose of your letter or e-mail, it will stand a better chance of being read carefully and given the proper attention if it is neatly presented. Make sure that it looks tidy on the page. The secret of tidy presentation is a skillful and generous use of space. Leave adequate margins around your text. Insert a line space between each paragraph. Use 1.5 or double spacing if the font you are using looks at all cramped with single line spacing. Further, choose a type of font and a point size that will ensure that your letter is easily legible. Fancy fonts, especially fonts that imitate handwriting, are not always immediately clear.

Referensi :

Hanser. Mansour H. (2006). The Facts on File: Guide to Style. New York: Facts on File, Inc.

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