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How to Write Amazing Cover Letters

Copyright ©2015 Joan Y. Edwards

“How to Write Amazing Cover Letters” by Joan Y. Edwards

A cover letter is not the same as a query letter. A query asks for permission to send a manuscript.

A cover letter encloses or attaches a manuscript along with it. Sometimes editors or agents request a chapter or a whole manuscript. If you’re attaching or enclosing a book manuscript or article, you need a cover letter to accompany it.  
You want your cover letter to be amazing. You want it to grab the editor’s attention. You want a YES, we’ll publish your book. So here are 7 steps to an amazing cover letter.

When you write a cover letter, do the following:

  1. Address a certain person if possible.
  2. Make it only one page, business format, single-spaced, your name and address and date in right hand corner. The publisher name and editor or agency name and agent and address listed on left hand side.
  3. Lead off with the short selling pitch/blurb of 25 words or less for your manuscript. A pitch is an eye-catching, heart-trapping summary of your book or article. It can also be called your “Hook.” Ask your critique group or partner to help you formulate a good pitch. Write your pitch on a 3×5 card. If you can’t get it all written on the front side of the card, it’s too long. Here are articles about writing a pitch:
    1.  A Selling Pitch Is Short with a Strong Emotional Tug:” https://www.joanyedwards.com/2014/06/22/a-selling-pitch-is-short-with-a-strong-emotional-tug/
    2. “Write Your Pitch First:” https://www.joanyedwards.com/write-your-pitch-first/
    3. “How to Deliver a Short, Gutsy Pitch to Entice Editors, Agents, and Readers:” https://www.joanyedwards.com/2011/09/15/how-to-deliver-a-short-gutsy-pitch-to-entice-editors-agents-and-readers/
  4. Tell why you and your book or illustrations are a good fit for this publisher or agent. Mention one book published by the editor or represented by the agent that is similar to yours and tell how your book would hook and attract readers to it.
  5. Give your publication credits. If you don’t have any, mention that you’re a member of SCBWI, or other literary group that also has a good reputation with publishers.
  6. Tell if this is an exclusive submission (only submitting to this editor or agent for three months or a simultaneous submission (more than one publisher or agent at a time).
  7. Include a Call for Action and thank you. Ask a question or proclaim a statement of why you want this particular publisher or agent to do. Thank them.

Put the editor’s name

Dear ____________,

Would you be interested in publishing my book? Then give your pitch.

“I’d be honored if you’d consider publishing my book.” Then give your pitch. Close with: “Thank you for considering (put name of manuscript).”


Sample Questions for Agents
“Will you represent me as my agent?”
“I’d be honored if you’d consider being my agent.”
“Thanks for considering me.”


Here are three good sources for cover letters:

  1. Ginny Wiehardt. “Cover Letter Advice.”Fiction Writing.com http://fictionwriting.about.com/od/thebusinessofwriting/tp/coverslettershowto.htm
  2. John Floyd. “Cover Me – I’m Going In!” http://www.writing-world.com/queries/floyd.shtml
  3. Moira Allen. “Cover Letters: When, How and Why to Use Them.” http://www.writing-world.com/queries/cover.shtml

Good luck with the publication of your writing and illustrating. Thank you for reading my blog. Please feel free to leave comments and ask questions.

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Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards, Author
Copyright © 2015 Joan Y. Edwards
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Ten Reasons to Use LinkedIn

“Ten Reasons to Use LinkedIn” by Joan Y. Edwards

Wikipedia says that by March 2011, LinkedIn had 100 million users worldwide. As of October 2011, LinkedIn had over 14 million students and recent college graduates as members. Now, they have over 225 million users. LinkedIn is a place for job seekers, entrepreneurs, and professionals to network online.

USA TODAY College says joining LinkedIn before graduation can benefit students during their college and professional careers.

Trade publication TechRepublic says LinkedIn has “become the de facto tool for professional networking.

Here are 10 reasons to use LinkedIn:

1. Connect with someone you already know who is on LinkedIn. Don’t ask to join the network of a person you do not know.  I have accepted from people whose names and work I am acquainted with, although I have not met them face-to-face. For instance, people I have interacted with by email or who have subscribed to my blog.

2. Endorse your connections for skills and expertise. You can also add other skills for them. Sometimes others endorse you for skills you hadn’t put on your list.  This is quite an honor.  By seeing the skills listed for you, an employer can check his needs with your skills and request an interview for a job with his company.

3. Design your own profile with a photo for Identification purposes.

4. Upload a resume listing all of your qualifications for a potential job. This will showcase your education, honors and awards, publications, work and community experiences. This can help you find jobs, people and more business opportunities.

5. Employers can list jobs and search for potential candidates within LinkedIn.

6. Job seekers can review the profile of hiring managers and discover which of their existing contacts can introduce them.

7. Send private messages to people in your network through LinkedIn.

8. Post links to websites, blogs, and other social media connections.

9. Join different focus groups for organizations, industries or products; for instance, SCBWI, social media, writers, illustrators, kitchen and bath designers, lawyers, plumbers, architects, etc.

10. See events that relate to your job and/or skills and who is going; for instance, conventions,  conferences, seminars, workshops.

11. Regular LinkedIn is free: http://www.linkedin.com/. You can join premium services for a fee.

I hope this article has shown you good reasons to use LinkedIn. Always remember it’s a choice.

Celebrate you today.
Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards

Copyright © 2013 Joan Y. Edwards


  1. Christina Wodtke: Announcing LinkedIn Events:” http://blog.linkedin.com/2008/11/07/announcing-linkedin-events/
  2. Guy Kawasaki. “How to Change the World: Ten Ways to Use LinkedIn:” http://blog.guykawasaki.com/2007/01/ten_ways_to_use.html
  3. Kevin O’Keefe. “LinkedIn Is 10 Years Old Now a Personal CRM System for Lawyers:” http://kevin.lexblog.com/2013/05/06/linkedin-is-10-years-old-now-a-personal-crm-system-for-lawyers/
  4. Kenna Griffin. “Why You Should Use LinkedIn More Than Facebook or Twitter:” http://www.profkrg.com/why-you-should-use-linkedin-more-than-facebook-or-twitter
  5. LinkedIn. Video. “The Value of LinkedIn:” http://help.linkedin.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/45
  6. Neal Shaffer. “What is LinkedIn and Why Should You Join?” http://windmillnetworking.com/2009/08/26/what-is-linkedin-and-why-should-you-join/#ixzz2Sl3rlGpZ
  7. Neal Schaffer. “Why Use LinkedIn? 7 Reasons for Every Professional to Join:” http://windmillnetworking.com/2009/02/02/7-reasons-why-every-professional-should-be-on-linkedin/
  8. OutSmarts. “Why You Should Use LinkedIn for Business:”   http://www.out-smarts.com/2011/08/05/why-you-should-use-linkedin-for-business/
  9. Ruth A. Harper. “Why You Should Use LinkedIn before Graduation:” http://www.usatodayeducate.com/staging/index.php/blog/why-you-should-use-linkedin-before-graduation
  10. Tess C. Taylor. “Why Use LinkedIn?” http://www.brighthub.com/internet/web-development/articles/112183.aspx