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    #1

    Exclamation writing a formal letter (of complaint) - present simple or continuous

    Eeons ago I was taught that to make your letter sound VERY formal you should start with writing "I write to (complain, enquire, etc.)" Now that my son showed me his FCE book, I am not sure. It just says "I am writing to..."
    Is it a mistake to use present simple in such introduction or is it really more formal.
    Thanks in advance for any advice.

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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      • Retired English Teacher
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    #2

    Re: writing a formal letter (of complaint) - present simple or continuous

    Welcome to the forum, matani.

    "I write to ..." is very dated.

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    #3

    Re: writing a formal letter (of complaint) - present simple or continuous

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    Welcome to the forum, matani.

    "I write to ..." is very dated.
    But not wrong? As I said I was taught English grammar some 20 years ago (ie. eons )

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: writing a formal letter (of complaint) - present simple or continuous

    I'm surprised you were taught this as recently as 20 years ago. I would say it is so dated as to sound unnatural. You will draw more attention to the WAY you write than WHAT you write, and that is not a good thing when clear communication, in any register, is your goal.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    #5

    Re: writing a formal letter (of complaint) - present simple or continuous

    I was taught well over twenty years ago and I am writing was the form used.

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