FRIENDLY LETTER TO THE AUTHOR
Directions: You will write a friendly letter to the author of the novel. You need to use correct format for friendly
letters (see model and grading rubric for guidelines).
Your Street Address
City, State Zip Code
Month XX, Year
Dear NAME, (Salutation – friendly letters use a comma [,] instead of the colon [:] used in business letters)
Introductory Paragraph (3-5 sentences): Use this paragraph to introduce yourself, the book you read,
and explain your purpose for writing. Friendly letters are a form of casual correspondence, so the number of
paragraphs and sentences per paragraph can vary greatly. You may choose to use block format (where
everything is aligned along the left-hand side; block format is often used for business letters) if you prefer. As
shown in this Friendly Letter Sample, no Inside Address (the recipient’s address; placed just above the greeting
in business letters) is needed. Many friendly letters even omit the sender’s address and just use the date as a
First Body Paragraph (4-6 sentences): Use this paragraph to discuss your favorite part(s) of the book
and why you liked it. Give specific examples! Notice the lack of spacing between paragraphs and the use of
indentation to indicate the beginning of a new paragraph. This is a more traditional letter format. Also note the
indentation of the heading information (your address area) and how it aligns with the closing information below.
OPTIONAL Second Body Paragraph (3-5 sentences): Either discuss one thing you would have done
differently and why, OR, tell about something in the story that directly relates to your own life and
explain the connection. This paragraph is EXTRA CREDIT. If you choose not to do this paragraph, you
will have only four total paragraphs in your letter.
Third Body Paragraph (3-5 sentences): Give your overall reaction to the book. Did you like it? Why or
why not? What impact did it have on you? Who do you think would like the book or should read the book?
Has reading the book changed you in any way? These questions are all examples of ways you could explain
your reaction to the book.
Closing Paragraph (1-3 sentences): Thank the author for his/her time and show your appreciation
for their having read your letter. Keep in mind that popular authors may get hundreds or even thousands of
letters each week, so if they actually read your letter, that is a pretty big deal!
Sincerely, (Closing – Yours Truly, etc.)
Typed Signature (Not always required)
**On the back, you will find a scoring rubric that will be used to check your final draft.
***Writing the optional second body paragraph will be worth up to 5 points extra credit.
****If you get a personal response from the author, you will receive 15 points extra credit! I will send your
letters to the contact listed on Khaled Hosseini’s his website at www.khaledhosseini.com. The more
compelling the letter, the more likely you will get a response!
GRADING CRITERIA – CHECKLIST
1. Heading is in the right place
2. Heading is in correct format
3. Salutation follows correct format
4. Opening paragraph introduces you, the book you read, and tells purpose for writing
5. Opening paragraph is minimum length
6. First body paragraph tells your favorite part(s) of the book
7. First body paragraph is minimum length
8. OPTIONAL Second body paragraph tells what you would change OR describes a connection between
yourself and the story/characters
9. OPTIONAL Second body paragraph is minimum length
10. Third body paragraph gives your overall reaction to the story
11. Third body paragraph is minimum length
12. Closing paragraph shows appreciation and thanks the author for his/her time
13. Closing paragraph is minimum length
14. Letter closing is written in correct format
15. Post Script (P.S.), if used, is in correct format
16. Ideas are fully explained and supported with details from the book
17. Ideas are arranged in logical order
18. Ideas are communicated clearly
19. Fresh, vivid language is used
20. Grammar is correct
21. Usage and spelling are correct
22. Punctuation is correct
23. Letter is typed and in final format