Example Letter #1
I know you hate giving advice, but I need your experience on my side. I have the opportunity to buy out another fisherman's fleet at the end of the season. The trouble is this will put us in a real bind financially next season. I hope you will come on down. I will take you to lunch and we can look at the numbers together. I trust your judgment more than my own. I look forward to hearing from you.
Example Letter #2
Jane, you are the one person I feel I can consult on this. I just got a raise and for the first time I am making more than Eric. In spite of what he says, I know this is troubling him...HELP! Let's get together over lunch this week and you can tell me how you handled the same problem.
Example Letter #3
I come to you seeking advice on a personal matter because you have known me since sixth grade and I admire your life experiences and knowledge of academia. I know also that you will honor my request for confidentiality.
What would you do if you had to decide between applying for government financial aid to complete a graduate degree or working full time for six months to earn enough money and have less debt?
I have recently borrowed to purchase an automobile and insurance liability coverage. The monthly payments are low and manageable with my part-time job, but I need money now to cover tuition costs. While I am reluctant to borrow more money, I worry that I may choose not to return to school if I take six months off.
Please let me know your thoughts on this subject. I look forward to hearing from you. Thank you for letting me express my concerns to you.
Example Letter #4
I need your advice. You are a friend who seems to know right from wrong. I am in severe financial trouble and wonder whether I should take out bankruptcy. I'd prefer to speak to you directly about this rather than go into detail in a letter. Could we get together sometime next week to discuss my situation? I'll give you a call in the next few days to set a time. Thank you for your time.
Write Your Letter Step-by-Step
Explain immediately that you are requesting advice and express confidence that the reader is one who can help.
Explain the problem in broad terms.
If necessary, suggest more detailed communication on the subject.
Express anticipation for an answer.