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  1. Brevity and focus. Cover your topic in the fewest possible words. Get to your main point quickly. Stay focused on your key points.
  2. Readability. Readers are attracted to short sentences. Avoid using too many numbers and prepositional phrases. Avoid cliches. Follow common rules of punctuation, grammar and spelling.
  3. Timeliness. Send your letter while the topic is timely, but not so quickly that you don't review what you have written before sending the letter.
  4. Fairness. Make your points on the merits rather than emotion. Avoid disparaging a group of people based solely on the actions of one member of that group.


  1. Poetry or rhyme in any form.
  2. Most consumer complaints.
  3. Form letters or generic Web site letters.
  4. Most "thank you" letters.
  5. "Open" letters to government officials.
  6. Letters written for a class assignment or as part of an organized letter-writing campaign.
  7. Most sports-related letters. (Send these to The Oklahoman's sports editor.)
  8. Letters that have been published elsewhere or letters submitted to other publications.
  9. Letters written in an overly informal style.


  1. Full name, address, and email. (Your address and e-mail are needed for verification. They will not be published.)
  2. Maximum length of 250 words.
  3. Authors limited to one letter every 28-42 days, depending on volume.
  4. When referring to a news story or previous letter published, cite the headline or letter writer's name and the date of publication.


Editing is done for the benefit of our readers. We make every attempt to preserve the writer's essential meaning. Editing for length allows us to accept a greater number of letters. Letters most likely to be edited are those that are twice as long as needed to make a point and those that try to make too many points.

Your Views

  • A small thing to help save the life of a child

    Published: Wed, May 20, 2015

    If you stop at a local casino, you will see people with their player’s card inserted into the machine, and a cord attached to that card and to their shirt or around their wrist. If they walk away without the card, the cord tugs at them and reminds them to remove it. If I had a child in the back...

  • Amtrak trains should have maximum speed of 60 mph

    Published: Wed, May 20, 2015

    There is much talk about what can be done to reduce Amtrak accidents. I don't know the answer, but I know a question to ask: Why are there railroad engines capable of 106 mph? When is that speed needed? I know that the power might be needed at times, but a speed governor installed with a maximum...

  • Dead cat video sends a dangerous message

    Published: Mon, May 18, 2015

    Regarding “Oklahoma students make dead cats dance in YouTube video” (NewsOK, May 12): The dead cats that Harding Charter Preparatory High School students used as dancing puppets in a mocking video very likely may have been someone’s beloved family member. Many cats used for dissection are former...

  • No fan of Jane Fonda

    Published: Mon, May 18, 2015

    I agree with Bruce Bruns (Your Views, May 13) regarding Jane Fonda. I feel sad that Fonda is OK with her actions in Vietnam and continues to consider herself an American. Service members sacrifice everything for a homeland that tolerates flag burners. Too many veterans end up homeless and...

  • Denial of Keystone XL pipeline is a political decision

    Published: Mon, May 18, 2015

    Jim Dixon (Your Views, May 9) hopes the derailment of oil tanker trains will spur President Obama’s decision to OK the building of the Keystone XL pipeline. There’s no doubt that pipelines are the safest, most efficient and cheapest way to ship oil. I once worked for a pipeline company. We, the...

  • Why do teachers leave profession?

    Published: Mon, May 18, 2015

    The legislative session is ending and with it the annual comments on the state of K-12 teachers. Common themes include a teacher shortage, underpayment and the “best and brightest” leaving. I find the pay issue to be questionable. Students entering teacher education programs must be aware of the...

  • Exorbitant request by former parole board chief

    Published: Sun, May 17, 2015

    Regarding “Parole board chief quits” (News, May 13): Van Guillotte worked 200 hours (25 days, at eight hours per day) for the parole board and he's asking to be paid for 243 hours of accrued leave! He shouldn't even be accruing any benefits until after 30 calendar days, and certainly not at the...

  • New 'Judicial Safety Valve Act' is flawed

    Published: Sun, May 17, 2015

    It’s a breath of fresh air to see the Legislature giving judges greater discretion in sentencing. Judges are in the best position to know what sentence is most fair and proper for each person convicted or found guilty of a crime. House Bill 1518, the “Judicial Safety Valve Act” recently signed...