Writing for FCE/CAE/CPE

Useful language
FORMAL LETTERS
Letters objecting to someone's plans
I am writing to express my concern /disappointment / alarm at hearing ...
I was extremely alarmed/sorry/distressed to hear about your plans to ...
As I think you know, …
May I point out that …
I feel I really must object to ...
I am extremely concerned at the thought that ...
It must be very clear that ...
If these proposals go ahead, ... will happen.
Another threat to ... , if these proposals go ahead, would come from ...
I dread to imagine what damage this will cause.
May I respectfully suggest that you ...
I was wondering if you had considered this alternative?
Would it not be possible to ... ?
Letters of complaint
I am writing to complain about ...
I am writing to tell you how disappointed/annoyed I feel about ...
I was amazed/distressed/horrified to find that ...
As you must realise, ...
I am sure you know that ...
I am sure you can imagine ...
I am sure you will appreciate that ...
It goes without saying that ...
At the very least, I look forward to receiving ...
Unless you ... , I am afraid that I will have to take this matter further.
Letters of recommendation
I am writing to you on behalf of ...
I have known X for ... years.
She / He has shown herself/himself to be extremely ...
X would seem to fit the requirements of this job perfectly.
I have no hesitation in recommending X as a ...
Letters to the editor
I am writing about the article on ... , which appeared (in last night's paper).
I am writing with reference to the article you published (in last month's issue).
I have just read your article on ... and I feel I must ...
You raised some issues which I feel strongly about.
At the start of your article, you appear to claim that ...
I am afraid I totally disagree.
I am completely in agreement.
I am sure readers will agree with me when I say that ...
ARTICLES
Sequencing
At first / To start with/In the beginning, ...
Then/Next/After that, ...
The next thing that happened was ...

While all this was going on. When I think back to what happened then. I should point out that .... In the middle of all this........ X is not quite/nearly as (comfortable/expensive/ convenient) as Y because .. Y is .. Comparing places or facilities One of the main differences between X and Y is that … X is completely/entirely/totally different from Y in that … Unlike X. . Y is . I have prepared the following report. . . I found that . Further to my visit to .. X is virtually/exactly the same as Y when it comes to ... Simultaneous events Meanwhile/In the meantime.. During all this time.... .. . .... I recommend that we look into the possibility of .. In no time at all.. . .... Without any warning.. Sudden or unexpected events Suddenly/All of a sudden. Finally/In the end. Concluding comments All things considered. . Rapid events As quick as a flash.. Seconds/Minutes later.. After some time/After what seemed like years..... Although .. At last.. I would recommend . . Just when I was least expecting it..... Looking back In retrospect. X is a little/slightly/somewhat/a great deal (bigger/more elegant than Y... In the wink of an eye. It wasn't until much later that . .... While/Whereas/Although X is .. . . The following report relates to my recent visit to ... The next thing I knew was .. . General comments On the whole.. In a matter of seconds/minutes.. ..... . ... I believe that . ... Late on/Some time later. All at once. Out of the blue... .The next thing I knew was ... It is a fact that . REPORTS Introductory comments I recently visited (the new Leisure Centre) and have prepared the following report for your consideration... . Taking all these points into consideration.

I would argue that for the following reasons. I trust you will give my proposal your full consideration. . I feel very strongly that ..... X is. As I see it.. What I liked most/didn't like was ... If we were to ... I felt/thought it was … I was impressed by … What struck me most was . Let me explain why. which means that .... In spite of these few criticisms. Personally I feel that . I am convinced that . I would have no hesitation in recommending … Useful words and phrases Expressing and supporting opinions These words and expressions are especially useful in letters. In my opinion... The film has a quality cast. PROPOSALS As requested..... it would . at heart.. (because) .. The reasons why I believe that . It struck me as being .. REVIEWS x has much to recommend it..... It is set in the countryside/the future. I suggest we… .... It seems to me that… This is because ... The film was directed by ... I am of the opinion that . .. The characters were very convincing/very well drawn. I recommend that we . Just consider .. We should also ...... The film score is enchanting/evocative/scary...... I propose that we . What I didn't understand was how . I am submitting the following proposal on . We could . The plot was gripping. I am completely opposed to .... I feel strongly that we should . I believe that . On reflection.....We would then be able to ... essays and articles... I think . I am very much in favour of/against ... The hero/heroine/villain is ... a(n) love/spy/adventure story. I think it was . are as follows.. It is based on a book by ... … The reason is ... I believe/do not believe that . The film captures the spirit of ... It is a fact that .

. I would like to point out that … I agree that …However.. but now .. .. It goes without saying that . it seems that … Recently... it seems that …. Although it is true that . On the other hand.. ... we must remember that ... It is often said/argued that .. We must take into account the fact that ....... On the whole. Last but not least.. we have all become concerned that … Nowadays.. While nobody can deny that .... Making statements These words and expressions are especially useful in letters. … Secondly/A second area to consider is … Another point to remember is ... …In other words. I still feel that . I totally disagree/agree with the point that… It is questionable whether … I am sure/I doubt whether … It is true that ... However. In no way can I agree that . . People (sometimes) claim that … but I feel that . Listing arguments These words and expressions are especially useful in letters. .. .. essays and articles.. This is largely due to ....... In conclusion. It is important to remember that . we are all realising that .. Evaluating ideas.. I would like to point out that . it seems to me that . . essays and articles. .. . Surely it is completely unacceptable that . Opening phrases These words and expressions are especially useful in letters. . These days.. It is clear that .. …For example/For instance.. Dismissing contrary arguments These words and expressions are especially useful in letters.. it appears/seems that . people used to ….... Explaining/Expanding ideas and giving examples These words and expressions are especially useful in letters.. but all too often . . Notwithstanding the claim that . Over the past few months/years... essays and articles. . I would argue that… It may be true that .. for example. Firstly/In the first place / To begin with. . It could be argued that … However........ Persuading These words and expressions are especially useful in letters and proposals... Take. It is a fact that ... essays and articles... This means that ..... In the past. the situation in .. I think it is true that .. essays and articles. Finally. Despite all the arguments. ..

. The problem could easily be solved if .....articles.. -ing.. If we were to… . She loves .. -ing.I would urge you to consider… I am sure you will agree that… Surely you must agree that… I would urge you very strongly to ... We could . I was extremely impressed by… I was rather disappointed by… While X has much to commend it....... While some people will love ... proposals and reviews... All in all. Evaluating These words and expressions are especially useful in reports. Summarising These words and expressions are especially useful in letters.. I would like to praise the ...... -ing... ..... reports. I suggest we… We would then be able to . I propose that we .. We should also . proposals and reviews. Hobbies and interests He is crazy about . and letters... In conclusion. I believe that we should . .. I think that .. I was less happy with ... His greatest love is . essays.. Character/Personality He tends to be .. When you hear the arguments. She can be .. A major problem is that ... I recommend that we . To sum up. She appears/seems to be . others may feel less happy.. I am sure you will agree that . I feel that some aspects could be improved. He is inclined to be . Making recommendations These words and expressions are especially useful in proposals and reports. we could . Another area for complaint is … My overall impression was that … I am sure that visitors/readers/holidaymakers will thoroughly enjoy ...... What she loves most in life is . He spends all his time . the facts suggest that .. I believe that .... Describing These words and expressions are especially useful in articles. reviews.