Paragraphing Business Letters
A paragraph is a sentence or a group of sentences connected in meaning and developing a single phase of the subject. Each phase of the subject should be treated in a separate paragraph and every sentence in the paragraph should aid in the development of that phase of the subject.
Object of Paragraphing
— The objects to be obtained by paragraphing are….
First, to separate the different phases of the subject
Second, to make reading easy for the eye by breaking up the matter into short units
Third, to make reading easy for the mind by giving it a resting place and a fresh start
Fourth, to make the letter more attractive in appearance
The function that a letter has to perform determines, in many cases, the paragraphing. For instance, the sales letter has four functions to perform….(1) to attract attention (2) to create desire (3) to convince (4) to stimulate to action. Each function requires at least one paragraph.
It will often be necessary to devote more than one paragraph to the development of a single function.
Length of Paragraph
— The first and the last paragraph should be short — as a rule, not more than three or four lines. Other paragraphs should not be more than seven or eight lines in length. To avoid monotony, paragraphs should vary somewhat in length. Business letters should be broken up into easy-reading, eye-pleasing paragraphs, even when there is but a slight change in the subject.
When to Paragraph
— While no rules can be given for paragraphing that will apply in all cases, the following suggestions will be helpful:
1. Every change of subject matter requires a paragraph.
2. Every idea that is to be emphasized should have a separate paragraph.
3. Make a new paragraph whenever the appearance of the page requires it.
Paragraphing Business Letters :
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