Letter to The Editor

Letter to The Editor :

This letter usually expresses an opinion about a current issue, a news event, something you read in the newspaper or magazine or heard on the radio or television. Often, it is intended to influence the opinions of the readers, listeners or viewers. Sometimes, such a letter is a means of simply saying something you feel needs to be said. It may also be intended to change the policy of the radio or television station, or the magazine or newspaper company.

Letters-to-the-editor is really a persuasive expository essay written in a letter format. Because you are trying to change attitudes, this kind of letter requires a lot of thought, planning and in some cases research to find convincing facts. Start with a statement that tells what issue the letter is about, followed by a clear statement of your opinion. Then provide a number of body paragraphs that give background information and convincing supports for your opinion. End the letter with a summary, a hope that something can be done, or a suggestion for change.

This particular kind of letter needs to be planned carefully and written correctly. It will be read by hundreds, if not thousands, of people who will form an opinion about you and may judge your opinions accordingly. Any statistics or quotes you use must be accurate, and you must give credit for them. Although letters-to-the-editor take time and hard work, if you have something important to say, they are worthwhile because they give you the opportunity to influence the attitudes and opinions of a large segment of your community.

Read the sample letter to the editor which follows on the next page. Once again, instead of Dear Sir or Madam, you should find the editor’s name. It is usually listed on the newspaper’s masthead4, somewhere near the front of the paper.

A column near the front of the paper that lists the paper’s address, phone number and other contact information.

100 Bay Shore Road
St. Andrews, NB E6G 2X1

August 23 - 2009

The Editor
The Saint John Crier
1512 King Blvd.
Saint John - NB
E2L 1J5

Dear Sir or Madam,

The color photo on the front page of your paper on August 19 - 1999 was in very bad taste. I have been buying your newspaper for several years now and have never felt the need to write. I like your new format and the addition of a color photo to the front page is a nice touch.

However, when I open up my morning paper, I was shocked to see such a color-photo of bad-taste. Please see to it that such a mistake never happens again in this Paper.

With love.

Your Loving Friend,


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