It is basically a “bad news letter.” You have one chance to say it right. Be as diplomatic as possible. Don’t let your words come back to haunt you someday.
- Open your refusal letter with a sincere expression of regret as you state exactly what you are refusing and how you received the request.
- Explain your reasons for refusing and any evidence you may have to back up your position.
- Offer alternate sources that your reader could appeal to with a better chance of success as a 'consolation prize.'
- Use courteous language throughout your letter, and end by expressing wishes for the reader's success elsewhere.
- Check your refusal letter carefully for typos or any other mistakes in grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
- Refer to essential references such as Little, Brown Handbook, The (12th Edition) (Aaron Little, Brown Franchise).