Well the major publishers ignore cover letters from authors. They only deal with literary agents.
I understand there are small publishers who will read cover letters and ask for pages. I've never contacted any small publishers personally, but I would imagine the same ingredients apply as for cover letters to literary agents: A two or three paragraph pitch, one that clearly identifies genre, and a bit about your own background, the parts that are relevant (e.g., substantive expertise related to the book, writing degrees earned, or classes taken, writing awards won, or finishes on the shortlist), if any.
Thanks Eric for your advice on cover letters to Crime publishers,
An Australian spec fiction Publisher has advertised for manuscripts including a cover letter and synopsis.
But I'm so lucky with Query letters so far.
One of the world's biggest publishers requested "JOSH AND THE IT" Book 1 of my Super Space Kids series within 30 minutes of me sending an email query letter. http://www.karentyrrell.com
Thanks IJ for the good luck wishes.
Double checking my cover letter now.
Good luck with your writing too :))
All of the basics - name, address, contact info (including website, phone #, and email), plus anything and everything requested on the submission guidelines or query guidelines for that particular publisher. Don't skip anything and don't add anything not requested.
Thanks for your straight forward practical advice. I'll be double-checking those guidelines.
Good luck with your writing and publishing too ... Karen :))
PS Noticed your martial arts attire. My crime faction novel, Sayonara has an Aikido theme.
Cool! I'Il have to read it. I have one coming out in July called Beta. Private investigator/taekwondo instructor after a kidnapped girl.
Fab! Our stories are on similar lines.
Forensic student/ Aikido instructor searches for her missing Japanese exchange student.
Sayonara, is based on a true personal story ... our Japanese exchange student went missing a few years ago.