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English Writing

English Writing

Hi All

I am an ACCA Qualified and very good with preparing accounts and playing with figures, but when its come to write a letter to client or HMRC or daily emails corresponence , i found i am not good at, i am making grammer and spelling mistakes and english not seems professional,

English is not my first language

Can anybody help,any advise, any good book which help me, please recomend

Many Thanks In advance

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04th May 2012 12:11

.

Did you pass your exams in an English version of the papers?

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04th May 2012 12:20

Yes but passing exam is something different ,they donot care about ur grammer , i am talking about english in real life of an accountant,

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By pauld
04th May 2012 12:25

it dunt really matter mate

know one reeds tax letters so wunt worry bout it !

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04th May 2012 12:26

Cambridge do some very good grammar books for people for whom English is a second language.  'English Grammar In Use' is very good.  However, to get to a standard of writing good professional letters will take quite some time and a lot of work!

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04th May 2012 12:36

Sorry I just re-read my post and realised that it could sound a bit patronising or even offensive, it wasn't intended like that!  I simply mean that a book will not be a quick fix because Grammar is a complicated subject to master if it's not your first language.

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By BKD
Tim Vane
04th May 2012 12:55

Good Grammar (sic)

Cathy Ratchford wrote:

....a book will not be a quick fix because Grammar is a complicated subject to master if it's not your first language.

Including the use of capitals at the right time  |;¬)

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04th May 2012 12:52

Do you have a friend or colleague who could read over your letters / e-mails before you send them?  They would be able to spot mistakes or grammatical errors, or point out where a more suitable phrase could be used. 

Perhaps you could try to build up a set of "standard" letters which you know have the correct spelling and grammar. 

Using good spelling and grammar will certainly enhance your professionalism so any investment that you make in this area will be well worth it.

For example, as a native English speaker, I would re-word your e-mail as follows:

"I am ACCA Qualified and very good at preparing accounts and playing with figures, but when it comes to writing a letter to a client or HMRC, or daily e-mail correspondence, I find that I am having trouble.  I make grammatical and spelling mistakes, and my English does not appear professional.

English is not my first language.

Please can anybody offer any advice or recommend a good book which may help me?

Many thanks in advance"

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04th May 2012 12:54

Really the only way to do it is to (a) read a lot and (b) write a lot.   Whilst I am sure study books will help, its only practice that will perfect it.

I would in your shoes try and read extensively, newspapers, novels, technical literature anything other than texts and badly worded forums (if reading my posts on here!)

Reading is a very big part of learning.

And if possible get someone else to help you edit some of your emails and letters who will be patient with you and explain why things are not worded quite right.  This will no doubt be hard to do, but its well worth it.

English is a a complicated language to learn and a lot of our native speakers struggle, so dont be too hard on yourself.

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taxinfo
04th May 2012 17:39

Good advice

ireallyshouldknowthisbut wrote:

Really the only way to do it is to (a) read a lot and (b) write a lot.   Whilst I am sure study books will help, its only practice that will perfect it.

I would in your shoes try and read extensively, newspapers, novels, technical literature anything other than texts and badly worded forums (if reading my posts on here!)

Reading is a very big part of learning.

And if possible get someone else to help you edit some of your emails and letters who will be patient with you and explain why things are not worded quite right.  This will no doubt be hard to do, but its well worth it.

English is a a complicated language to learn and a lot of our native speakers struggle, so dont be too hard on yourself.

This is very good advice. I think you also need to either get some books on English Language or find some websites that give advice. You then need to get the "somebody else" to explain what mistakes you make and show you where you can find advice on the particular problem. I think you will find you learn how to correct your errors from first principles rather than just read books about English Language without any context. Correcting individual errors is not as good as learning the principles - as well as the many exceptions!

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taxinfo
06th May 2012 14:42

Spot on

ireallyshouldknowthisbut wrote:

Really the only way to do it is to (a) read a lot and (b) write a lot.   Whilst I am sure study books will help, its only practice that will perfect it.

I would in your shoes try and read extensively, newspapers, novels, technical literature anything other than texts and badly worded forums (if reading my posts on here!)

Reading is a very big part of learning.

And if possible get someone else to help you edit some of your emails and letters who will be patient with you and explain why things are not worded quite right.  This will no doubt be hard to do, but its well worth it.

English is a a complicated language to learn and a lot of our native speakers struggle, so dont be too hard on yourself.

Read English books - any books (preferably not newspapers) and you will soon get a good feel for and thereby improve your grammar.
English grammar is notoriously weird although the suggestion to get a basic grammar books is probably a good one.
As said above - don't be too hard on yourself. Most native English speakers are truly abysmal at speaking ANY other language so you are already one up of most of them!!

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04th May 2012 13:05

Yes! :)

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By newmoon
04th May 2012 15:30

In the meantime you could use a secretarial service.

Whilst improving your own written English to a level that you are happy with, you could use a secretarial service.

Use your software spelling and grammar check (UK English) as much as possible also.

Another option is to use plenty of template letters and email wording. Have someone help set these up if necessary. 

 

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04th May 2012 17:24

Take a course

Take an "advanced English as a foreign language" course - I am sure there are local colleges offering this.

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By law man
08th May 2012 16:27

English language

The advice given above is good.

In addition:

(1) use the spell check on your PC. I know you wrote "grammer" deliberately, but the spell check should pick this up.

(2) An excellent book is Sir Ernest Gowers "Complete Plain "Words". For a lighter, but still relevant, book try Lynn Truss "East, Shoots and Leaves".

Remember: many British born natives can not speak or write correctly. You can do it: I teach law rather than accounts as such, and find many students of overseas origin speak English remarkably well: particularly East Europeans.

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08th May 2012 16:45

@Peter

good point

 

English is a a complicated language to learn and a lot of our native speakers struggle, so dont be too hard on yourself.

plenty fail!

 

 

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By BKD
08th May 2012 16:50

Complicated

English is a a complicated language to learn

So it would seem - fail!

    |;¬)

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09th May 2012 16:41

As long as you NEVER write 'different to'
you will be OK with me. Good luck and remember, every day is a school day.

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