2015年初，當時剛完成博士論文，就接到「我識出版集團」特約編輯祈天小姐的寫書邀約。為了寫一本專適合大學畢業、給初入社會年輕學子的英文書，我請好朋友Erin Newport 擔任英文審訂者，讓英文句型口語更道地，並請Greg McCann 老師設計豐富的重點學習對話。
最後，特別感謝編輯祈天、Erin Newport、Greg McCann、Heather Anderson和Lightman Kuo的協助，讓這本書順利完成。
黃素馨 Jasmine Huang
33 Essential English Lessons for Recent Graduates will help you learn grammar, help you become a better job candidate, it will teach you how to be a backpacker, how to socialize with others in English, and much, much more. This book is an adventure through the world of modern English in the 21st Century and it should be considered an essential text for anyone seeking to navigate today’s globalized societies when English is their second language.
We start off with the basics: phonics. In this chapter, readers will learn about the many different English accents that are spoken around the world; you will also pick up great tips on pronunciation, basic grammar errors (and how to solve them) and, of course, phonics. This is a particularly important chapter to start with because English language learners whose native language is Mandarin Chinese are presented with specific challenges that are connected to their native language. Chinese grammar and logic are much different from English. This is not true of Spanish, Italian, and German, but it is for Chinese and many other Asian languages. In a nutshell, if you think in Chinese and then translate it directly into English, you will get “Chinglish,” not English. And whether you are a backpacker or a businessman, you don’t want be speaking Chinglish in today’s interconnected world. We want real English, and this chapter will help us learn it in a fun way.
Speaking of businessmen, the next two chapters are about “Jobs” and “Workplace Skills,” two very important and serious topics, but in keeping with this text’s title and theme, we make it fun! Not sure about how to draft up a compelling resume or cover letter? Struggling with how to prepare for the big job interview? Relax, because the chapter on “Jobs” has it covered! Tips, insights, and examples abound, and in short order you will be feeling like a competitive job candidate who is ready to communicate in English. Likewise, whether you’re dealing with emails, presentations, telephone conversations, or making small talk by the water cooler, the chapter on “Workplace Skills” presents readers with realistic scenarios and examples that are extremely useful for dealing with real life professional situations.
The next chapter on “Social Skills” nicely compliments the previous two. Is “small talk” really a big deal? You bet it is, and this chapter will show you how to do it the right way in English. Can two or more people “agree to disagree” and yet still feel like they’re right? Believe it or not, it can be done, and you can accomplish it in English with the help of this chapter. In addition, if you are a local Taiwanese who has some Western or English-speaking friends coming in from overseas, this chapter will have you feeling comfortable and fluent in English as you guide them around the beautiful island of Taiwan.
And while we’re talking about travel, why not talk about “Backpacking,” because that’s what the next chapter is about. In “The Backpacker Lifestyle” readers will become well-versed in English on topics like making hotel and restaurant reservations, getting to and from the airport, how to navigate the airport itself, and, finally shopping. We told you this book would be fun!
The final chapters walk us through topics as interesting and diverse as online shopping, pop culture, international competitiveness, syntax, and finally, reading—all fascinating and essential subjects that English learners should be fluent in today’s world.
This book will show you that reading and learning are not burdensome and boring chores at all—they are fun!
Gregory E. McCann