Nick Davis reports:
"Fax cover letters not only inform the fax recipient of the nature of the attached document but also provide the recipient with your business contact information. The cover letter doesn’t have to contain a great deal of detail, but you do need to add the fax recipient’s name and number, your contact information, a date, the number of pages within the fax and a short description of the document you are faxing. You can make a simple cover letter using any word processing application...Click 'Start,' 'All Programs' and the name of your word processing application to launch the program. Click 'File' and 'New' to create a new document...Type 'To:' and enter the fax recipient’s name. Press 'Enter' or 'Return.' Type 'Fax:' and enter the person’s fax number. Press 'Enter' or 'Return,' or press the 'Tab' key if you want the next entry to remain on the same line. Type 'Date:' and enter today’s date or a future date...Type 'From:' and enter your name and business name. Press 'Enter' or 'Return.' Type 'Phone:' and enter your telephone number. Press 'Enter' or 'Return,' or press the 'Tab' key if you want the next entry to remain on the same line. Type 'Pages:' and enter the amount of pages you are faxing...Type 'Notes:' and enter a short description of the fax. Press 'Enter' or 'Return' when you are done entering the description...Click 'File,' 'Print' and 'OK' to print your fax cover letter. Click 'File,' [followed by] 'Save As' and enter a name for the document in the 'File name:' box. Press 'Enter' or 'Return' to save the fax cover letter on your computer...Click 'Start,' 'All Programs' and 'Microsoft Word' to open the program. Click 'File' and 'New.'...Select the 'Faxes' icon under the 'Office.com Templates' heading. Click the 'Standard Format' fax template to access a simple fax cover sheet...Click the 'Download' button to retrieve the template from Office.com. The template will load within Microsoft Word and your computer’s cursor will appear in the 'To:' box prompting you to enter the fax recipient’s name. Press the 'Tab' key to go to the next field...Continue entering the fax sheet information and pressing the 'Tab' key until you are done entering the 'Comments:' information. Click 'File,' 'Print' and 'OK' to print your fax cover letter...Click 'File,' [followed by] 'Save As' and enter a name for the document in the 'File name:' box. Press 'Enter' or 'Return' to save the fax cover letter on your computer."
Bert Markgraf reports:
"When you write a business contract the key is to include all the necessary elements to make it binding and legal. You and your contractual partner must indicate that you are in agreement, and both parties have to execute the agreement as described in the contract. Unless there are complicated issues, the elements making up such a contract can fit on a single page...You must identify the parties bound by the contract. For business contracts, you have to specify the legal name of an incorporated business or the registered name of [a sole] proprietorship. If the business is not registered, the owner is contracting under his own name. In addition to business names, it's good practice to add the contact information for each business to indicate where the contractual partners can address formal correspondence affecting the contract...Each contract has a purpose. The contract may be a simple supply contract, where one business sells material to another that needs it. It can also be more complicated, as for a consulting contract where a business is looking for help in achieving a specified result. The part of the one-page contract specifying the purpose describes the current situation and details how the contract will help resolve the issues at hand. This part of the one-page contract can be a single line, or a paragraph of a dozen or so lines...The heart of the contract is an exchange of something that has value in return for a consideration of value. Usually a contract is between a supplier who receives payment, but the contract can also specify a trade or other exchange. The contract has to detail what the partners will exchange, when they will exchange it, and what the consideration in return will be, typically the price. In a separate paragraph, the contract has to indicate what will happen if the exchange doesn't take place as planned. It might say that the contract is void, that the supplier has to pay a penalty, or that the supplier may delay the supply...A contract is only legal if the parties identified in the contract signify that they agree to its terms. Placing the names of the parties at the end of the single page and having authorized representatives of the businesses sign to indicate their agreement makes the contract legally binding. The signatures have three parts. The signature itself has to be handwritten. The date of the signature has to be indicated, and having it handwritten as well supports its authenticity. For business contracts, the title of the person signing is important because the title indicates that the signatory has the authority to sign. This is clear if the title is 'President,' but if the title is that of a low-level employee, you may want to verify with the company that he has signing authority."
Kristen Hamlin reports:
"Whether you work in a busy public relations department for a major corporation, or have been assigned to handle the promotion for a small event, the media alert is one of the most important tools of the trade. The media alert is an invitation designed to inform the media about your event...and entice them to attend. A media alert differs from a press release, which is an example of the type of coverage you’d like to see after the event. Add a headline to the document that reads 'Media Alert.' Use a large font – 20 point or higher – all capital letters and bold print to ensure that the alert stands out among all of the other items a newsroom receives each day. Include the date that you’re sending the alert and your contact information at the top of the page. Describe the basic information about the event; include the who, what, where, when and why. Break each aspect into a separate paragraph, each with its own header. Use clear, compelling language to describe the event, but avoid reporting. A media alert is designed to attract media to an event, not explain the event or provide angles on the news. Print the media alert on company letterhead. Double[-]check the document for typos, spelling and grammatical errors and confirm that the details of the event are correct. Prepare your media contact list. Each media outlet has its own preference for receiving alerts, but most prefer fax or email. Confirm that the contact information you have for each person is correct to avoid wasting time. Send the media alert at least 24 hours before the event, if possible. If the media alert is for a last-minute press conference, or an offer for an expert on a news story, send it as soon as possible, preferably with at least an hour or two of notice. Follow up the media alert with a telephone call if you want to confirm that key media received the alert and plan to attend, or if it is going out on short notice. Post the media alert to your company website, and add information about the event to your company social media feeds, if applicable. If the media follows you online, they can get information from those sources immediately, which is especially important if they are out in the field and do not receive your printed alert...Keep the media alert short, no more than one page. Make it clear that there will be opportunities for photos and videos at the media event."
Adam Simpson reports:
"Proposed developments require planning permission. Local governments request detailed information because they need to understand the probable effects of the proposed development to guide them in deciding whether it would benefit the public. Design statements, which explain the thinking behind a planning application, provide much essential information...Show that you have thought about the context of the site and the surrounding area. The physical context includes what the site looks like and the ambiance created by the existing buildings and other features. The social context is concerned with how people in the area will be affected by the development. The economic context reflects how the development would contribute to the local economy. Indicate what groups and parties will be involved in discussing the development. Professional consultation and community involvement help avoid potential pitfalls. The statement should explore the findings of any consultations and explain how they have directed the decisions made by the applicant. Evaluate the information to determine opportunities and limitations that could influence the development. An opportunity for a new shopping mall may be that there is no similar facility within a certain distance; a limitation might be a lack of public transportation. Clearly explain what decisions have been made and why. The design statement should make readers aware of why any elements they may not agree with or understand have been included. Design the scheme according to the information and your evaluation of it. The statement is effectively the story behind the development and is a chance to show that the decisions you have made are based on a deep understanding of the location...Explain what the development will be used for and how it will complement the area. Also indicate how it would support local desires and aspirations...Explain why the size of the development is appropriate. In small developments such as a single house, the proposed size may be obvious because it is all that would fit on the site, but more detail is appropriate for larger projects. Illustrate the layout of the site. The statement must explain why the layout has been chosen and how it fits with its surroundings. For small developments, this may mean indicating that the development faces an existing road, for example. For larger projects, the layout may need to consider how design features such as accessibility or the use of solar panels have been incorporated. Indicate the scale of the buildings and surrounding spaces. Suggest the maximum and minimum sizes and why those sizes are appropriate...Describe the appearance of the development, the visual representation of the decisions that went into the design. In addition to the layout or the architectural features, the appearance includes details about landscaping. The statement should explain why the applicant seeks this appearance and how it will be maintained."
Flora Richards-Gustafson reports:
"Companies use jingles and catchphrases to help consumers become familiar with a brand or product, and hope that the simple phrases or ditties are memorable to the masses and repeated. Catchphrases have a focus on marketing, clarity and simplicity. Writing a jingle is similar to writing a song and has a strong focus on marketing...Become familiar with the client. Learn about the client’s company and product goals, as well as its target customer. The client may already have a slogan or catchphrase she wants you to use in addition to a preferred style of music. Ask the client whether there are any particular words or images she wants the public to associate with the product or service advertised. It is also important to find out the desired length of the jingle; typically, these can last up to 30 seconds...Gain familiarity with the product or service. Sample the product or service so you can learn more about its benefits. Take note of your experiences with the product or service...Compare the experiences to what your client wishes to communicate about the product...Create a hook, a catchy and memorable phrase. You can use the hook as a stand-alone catchphrase or as the focus of your jingle. A good hook can incorporate literary devices like rhyming words, puns, alliteration, assonance or onomatopoeia. Bear in mind that your client may already have a hook he wants you to use for a jingle. If you were hired to write a catchphrase, this is the end of the process before you present your idea to the client...Write the music for the jingle if the client did not provide you with a tune. Make sure the genre of music you write matches the client’s message...Write the lyrics for the jingle. Generally, the lyrics in jingles rhyme. Use action verbs and imagery, and repeat the name of the product or company. It is important to make sure that consumers associate the jingle with a product or brand. When writing lyrics, you can list the attributes of the product or services or create a mental image between the product and the target consumer...Perform the jingle for the client. Depending on preference, you may need to perform the jingle live for your client or provide an audio recording...Other literary devices you can incorporate into a jingle or phrase include hyperbole, metaphors, similes and repetition. Unless you are writing a Halloween-themed jingle, write the songs in a major key. You may need to come up with several phrases or jingles for a client, who will choose her favorite. Step 4 and Step 5 are interchangeable."
Sebastian Malysa reports:
"A mechanism description paper analyzes the appearance, function and operation of an object...The paper is meant to present the facts about an object in an objective manner that allows the reader to make his own value judgment. Moreover, the amount of detail you include depends on your audience. If you know your audience and write objectively, writing a mechanical description paper is relatively straightforward. Write an introduction that outlines the purpose and scope of the description paper. Devote only a few short sentences to this and only write an entire stand-alone paragraph if your paper exceeds two to three paragraphs in length. If the introduction needs to be a stand-alone paragraph, briefly describe the appearance of the object and define its function and operation. Avoid making grand statements in the introduction like, 'throughout the ages.' Do not attempt to impress your reader by providing unnecessary information and background history of the object of study; only provide accurate and direct information as efficiently as possible. Dedicate the next portion of the essay to describing and defining the object's mechanical function. Answer the question, 'What does it do?' Briefly describe the process in which it participates, if the object is only a part of a large process. Provide background information on the function of the object only if the object is completely unfamiliar to your readers. Dedicate the next section of the description paper to appearance. Answer the question, 'What does it look like?' Break up and categorize all of the object's components into classifications and describe them in an organized sequence...Use a bulleted list if you need to break your object into more than three component classifications. Dedicate as much space to this as is necessary to provide a detailed description of the object's appearance. Dedicate the final section of the description paper to operation. Answer the question, 'How does it work?' Use this section of the paper as the conclusion. Avoid conclusive words like 'therefore' and 'finally.' Write instead a direct answer to the above question. Explain how the design helps the object achieve its operative function. Dedicate a few sentences to a paragraph for this section."
Chris Miksen reports:
"A referral letter from a past employer helps the employee’s credibility and could help him become the candidate of choice. A referral letter must capture the employee at his best and convey to the prospective employer that he’s the candidate who deserves to be hired...State that you recommend the person for the position he’s after...Explain why you have given your recommendation. Talk about the way the person performed while an employee of your company. Highlight the employee’s accomplishments, especially if they relate to the position he’s trying to land. If possible, further your explanation by including concrete numbers...Highlight the person’s skills and strengths. Talk about what he brings to the table, especially skills that will be an asset to his new employer. Give a brief example of his strengths and skills and how he integrates them into the workplace...Talk about how he turned a weakness into a strength. Convince the employer that the employee not only brings to the table a list of skills and abilities, but he is also someone who looks to improve himself by working on his weaknesses. Give an example of how he struggled in an area of work and turned it around to excel in that area...Talk about his personality. Explain how his personality fits the culture of a workplace, how he works well with others or how he has a knack for leadership and takes others under his wing. Talk about his personable communication style, his friendly demeanor or anything that positively showcases his personality...Do not write inaccurate information or exaggerate a person's skills and abilities. Explain how you know the person and how long you have known him."
How to Document a Boat Sale
S.F. Heron reports:
"A bill of sale documents the sale or transfer of a boat from the seller to the buyer, and serves as the buyer's proof of ownership. Write a watertight bill of sale by answering the following questions: who is buying and selling the boat, which boat is being sold, what the price is and how the boat is being sold...You'll be providing the bill to your state's boating license agency to get a title and registration for your boat as well as your own insurance agency for insuring the vessel...Instead of creating the bill of sale from scratch, start with a template. You can download a boat bill of sale from a legal or business forms website – just check that the template is compatible with the laws of your state before you begin. Write the current date and complete buyer address and driver's license information under the heading 'Buyer.' The seller's address and driver's license information should be listed under the 'Seller' heading...Identify the type and exact size of the boat[,] i.e.[,] the year, make, model, serial number and any unique markings under the heading 'Description.' Also describe any additional features being included in the sale in this section...Any other major equipment should be included under the description heading...List the complete registration number for the vessel under the 'Registration information' heading on your document. You'll find this number on the boat's title documents and printed on the hull of the boat. Make sure the numbers match precisely or you may run into difficulties when you try to register the boat in your name...Identify the sales price clearly under a separate heading for 'Price.' The price should include the total cost of the vessel. This section of the boat bill of sale can be broken down into components if a trailer or other equipment [is] being sold. It's important to get this section right as you'll need it for future tax purposes...You have the option of transferring the boat 'as is' or with express warranties regarding the condition of the vessel. Be sure to specify whether the boat is sold with or without a guarantee and stipulate any modifications that the seller will be making to the vessel...Allow space on the bill of sale for both the buyer and [the] seller to provide complete signatures and dates of signature. Leave additional room to allow for notarized stamps if required by your state."
Amy Sterling Casil reports:
"Avoid a 'laundry list,' which is a term instructors use to describe a simple list of poorly related elements included in the body of the paper. Include well-connected ideas to create a sophisticated, thoughtful thesis. Use the thesis to build a strong paper that will achieve a better grade instead of a weak list of academic terms or unrelated concepts...Textbook authors David Rossenwasser and Jill Stephen identified two types of weak thesis statements in student papers. The first was called 'Procrustean Bed,' in which students cut out necessary concepts to fit a narrow thesis, resulting in short, unsophisticated papers. The second problem thesis, the 'Laundry List,' is a list of unrelated or poorly related ideas or information. Expanding the 'Laundry List' in the body of the paper produces incoherent writing that makes little sense...Develop your thesis statement to fit the type of paper you have been assigned to write. Identify at least three to four connected components of an assigned topic, and include them in the thesis for an analytical paper. Determine three or four key elements of an explanation to answer the prompt for an expository paper. Include at least three or four in-depth grounds or reasons in support of your opinion or claim for an argumentative paper...Writing instructor Karen Gocsik advises students to sketch out their ideas about a paper and rethink them before finding an 'umbrella idea' that will include all of the major concepts the paper will cover. Write a preliminary thesis statement as you start writing the paper. Review your writing and revise the preliminary thesis statement to fit the big umbrella of all of your ideas after you complete a rough draft or detailed outline...Eliminate assumptions and develop more sophisticated ideas by combining new information with your own opinions. Note the specific words used by authors in material you have been asked to study and write about. Analyze the specific words and concepts first; then add your own opinion. You will automatically synthesize the new information with what you previously thought and write a more complex, sophisticated thesis sentence and paper."
Donna Kaluzniak reports:
"Highlight your firm’s experience, technical expertise, highly trained staff or state-of-the-art equipment. This gives the client c onfidence that your company will provide them with a problem-free well drilling project. Include backup documentation such as copies of your license, insurance, and evidence of financial responsibility...If you're responding to a request for bids or proposals for well drilling, read the invitation to bid carefully and make a checklist of every item required. The client may want references, descriptions of past projects, or evidence of financial responsibility in addition to a price proposal. Carefully review any available engineering drawings and specifications for the proposed water well. Make a note of questions you have or items that need clarification. Note the total depth and diameter of the well, casing depth and material, well development methods and performance specs, pump motor type and size, electrical requirements[,] and transmission main connection. Visit the site of the proposed well. Make a note of any features not shown in the drawings, including landscaping, soil type, underground and overhead utilities, or potential interferences. Attend any meetings scheduled by the client. Have your list of questions available. If a meeting is not scheduled, contact the client or engineer to clarify any issues discovered during Steps 1 through 3...Using all the information you have gathered, prepare your water well drilling proposal package. Type the proposal on a computer, or print neatly. Check each item off your checklist as completed. Highlight items that make your company stand out, such as successful projects, staff expertise[,] or permitting experience. Include the price proposal, and all the required supporting documentation that you noted on your checklist in Step 1. Provide a detailed description of the project, if not responding to a request for bid or proposal. Make at least one copy of the well drilling proposal for your records. Make additional copies as required by the client. Place each copy in a report cover or binder, with documents ordered as per the bid or proposal request. Copies should be clean and complete, with all documents in the same order as the original. Deliver the well drilling proposal before the deadline date and time either personally or by mailing service with return receipt...Double[-]check the location, date[,] and time for delivery of your well drilling proposal and allow extra time for unexpected delays."
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