Writing book, yeah, a writing book, tough guy

Before I left Taiwan in early 2003, I was aware (was told by one of the authors) that a textbook was coming out for foreigners, in Taiwan, specifically aimed at teaching writing, from notes to friends through to formal letters – with a concentration on the little things like the proper ending phrases and such, and the different levels of formality/respect, admittedly most of this being lost on Taiwanese under 30.

Have you seen this book?

Eslite bookstore at NTU has it. I forget the name of the book.

I have a book called “A Learner’s Handbook of Modern Chinese Written Expressions” 現代漢語書面語學習手冊 by Yu Feng 馮禹 that teaches some of that stuff, as well as lots of vocabulary and sentence/grammar patterns that are used only in writing. I got it a while back, but it’s a book from the mainland (although I bought it in Taiwan). I haven’t seen anything else similar, but I’ll check out the Eslite across from NTU tomorrow when I go to class and see what they have.

Thanks, Buddha. That book is on Amazon, so when I get back to the US I’ll get it.

I think I found the book you were looking for at the Eslite across from NTU. It’s in simplified characters, though, and for a thin book, the NT$935 price tag is a bit steep. It’s called “Developing Writing Skills in Chinese” 實用漢語寫作 by Boping Yuan and Kan Qian. It’s published by Routledge (London and New York, 2003). The sections include: cards; notes; personal letters; announcements, small ads and others; formal letters; reporting speech, exemplification, reformulation and summary; comparison and contrast, simile and metaphor; procedure, process and development; descriptions of people’s physical attributes; descriptions of people’s emotional attributes; descriptions of people’s disposition and moral attributes; descriptions of people’s movements and actions; descriptions of places and the weather; and business correspondence. The layout isn’t bad, there are lots of exercises and vocabulary lists, etc. Seems to be an OK book for someone starting out on writing in Chinese (just a tad too expensive!)

Thanks, but that’s not it. I wish I could remember one or more of the authors names, but the authors of the books you mentioned are Routledge regulars. Routledge stuff is all like that: pretty good, but way over-priced.

There are two or three authors for the book I am looking for, all teach foreigners at Taida or Shida. I will try to poke around the Net some more and see if I can’t find something. If anyone is in the neighborhood of Shida at some point, Lucky Bookstore or the MTC bookstore (6F) would be as likely as anywhere to have it.

Well, the school where I teach finally started my Chinese class (with much badgering from me) and my teacher recommended