Wednesday, March 26, 2014
English for Scammers by Dorothy Zemach and Chuck Sandy
Thankfully, English for Scammers does that, which means I can happily ignore all the spam mails, content to know that if they wanted to, they could write nicely. This book teaches you the basics of writing a business letter, from format to tone and even basic things like grammar and punctuation. Keep in mind though, for the grammar and punctuation part, it's not a comprehensive chapter, but is good enough as an introduction. Each chapter ends with a series of exercises, most of which require you to correct the English in a poorly-written scam email. Answers are included at the back of the book.
To me, this book was amusing and fairly educational. For one thing, I didn't know that esophageal cancer was so prevalent in the scammer world. Plus, I haven't had a writing class since secondary school, so it was a good refresher on how to write a professional email. Most of the book uses American English, but the book does give the British English equivalents, which I appreciated.
Difficulty level-wise, this book is probably suited for the beginner or for someone looking for a quite refresher on how to write a professional email. Using these terribly written emails was actually a good idea, because it gives you a very clear sense of what not to write, and by correcting them, you learn how to write a proper email.
Disclaimer: I got a free copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a free and honest review.