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Chapter 3. Pack the Essentials > Hitting the Right Note: Tone - Pg. 28

Pack the Essentials 28 Hitting the Right Note: Tone Although you'll no doubt be called on to address many different audiences as you write, most of your work will be addressed from one adult to another. As such, you're expected to sound reason- able and moderate. The line "Only really stupid people ignore herbs; I mean you gotta be a jerk to not take this stuff" from Exhibit A would go over about as well as a poke in the eye with a sharp stick. Word Watch Tone is the writer's attitude toward his or her subject and readers. Your stance in writing is reflected in your tone, which is what you say and how you say it. Tone can be broadly described as formal or informal. Journals are informal; business letters are formal. Most audiences call for a tone somewhere between formal and informal, with some key exceptions: · Always use a more formal tone when you're writing up--to supervisors or teachers, for example.