Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Best in Cover Letters: On a Treasure Hunt

Here. This looks quite cozy and delicious eh? Well take one more sip, because it will be your last for quite a while. Grab the best map you can find because the hunt for cover letter perfection is on! Keep reading and don't spill your tea--herbal please!

This lovely lady introduced me to this amazing book which mentions the basics of the cover letter and SO, SO, much more I never knew. I am beginning to fall in love with it, if I may say so. There are many others just as good. Here is where they would be listed: directly under the Must Reads i.e. MAPS list

 Now while this next link will not mention any actual cover letter advice, the concept is the same.When in self doubt, act like the child here.  Seriously, something is bound to emerge out of all the similar chaos and deep anxiety of writing said cover letter.  Hence the "no" attitude will become a "yes, you can."

warning: you will be both satisfied and exasperated by the end of it all, the whole journey will tire you. Take note of the mother in this cartoon for a good idea of what it might be like.

Here is a brief description of what they are all about.

And here is something you thought you knew, but didn't. Okay maybe you did, but read it anyway!

**this is me giving you a big shove as you walk the plank to...**

Literary Rambles is a favorite source of mine for information on what to include in these hopefully super savvy (shall I say canny?) little letters. Here are a few snippets:

"Agent Jamie Weiss Chilton (Andrea Brown Literary) said not to stress over your cover letters. Every submission she receives, she sets the cover letter aside and reads the first pages. If she loves the writing then she'll read the cover..."

Steven Chudney:

"The ideal cover letter should be pretty brief (no more than one page, and not in six point typeface!) and tell me a little about the project being submitted--just enough to whet my appetite. A brief and relevant bio about the writer is ..."

Tracy Adams:

"The ideal cover letter shows that the writer has done research on my agency, and perhaps even mentions specific authors we represent." 

Agent Marietta Zacker:

"It is difficult for me to ask to see a manuscript or get excited about what I am about to read when the query or cover letter has no soul or personality. I understand that everyone is trying to be respectful and professional and I certainly appreciate that, but if I had to choose, I would prefer to know who you are rather than the word count or to what book your manuscript can most be compared."

**this is your face full of silly confusion after the ordeal**

Oh, and when all else fails and you are pulling tooth and nail for more cover letter perfection: 


Call your mother, and

Ask around like a lunatic high off of the dear question mark until you find a credible answer. Make Mad Hatter proud to share tea with you afterwards!


  1. Great quotes! It gets a bit confusing when one wants this, the other doesn't. But that's where that research comes in to play! Thanks for the post.


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