It is extremely difficult to look professional while bouncing, even leaving the flapping out entirely. Especially when you are not very old and not very big and very female. So you try not to go with the bouncing. On the other hand you don't want to sound like that monotone guy in the St. Olaf Physics Department who singlehandedly convinced you never ever ever to go to St. Olaf, no matter how the scholarships came out, because if you had to spend a semester with That Guy, somebody would end up dead and your money was on him. Umm. Perhaps the second person is not the appropriate person for this last sentence.
I especially hate the bit where you have to put what the book is about in a short paragraph. The only thing I hate as much as that bit is where you have to say in what ways you do not suck entirely and how Stan Schmidt and Sheila Williams and The Jer and at least one somebody or another over at Ideo and lo these other people as well think you do not suck entirely. So that's the whole letter, really, except for the bit where you say, "May I send you the whole shebang?" I like that bit all right. I just put it in to make me feel better about the rest. So now the file in its entirety reads:
"Dear [editor's name here]:
May I send you the full manuscript?
Marissa K. Lingen (Gritter)"
Oh, wailie woe. Cover letters. Despair.