Start your letter off by stating the intent of your letter. Keep this short and to the point. If you are inquiring into a situation, complaining or asking for something, state it here.
The following paragraphs should give the points you wish to back up your reason for writing. Remember to keep the information to the point. A common mistake is to let your letter wander.
Keeping the first rule of thumb in mind, keep the letter brief and factual. One page should be your maximum. In some cases, you will find you need more than a page but those cases are rare. You do not want to lose your readers attention.
These guidelines are basically common sense. Sometimes, the writer will get carried away with an emotion and forget these rules. Going back and revising will help keep the writer in perspective and the reader on track. It all comes down to effective communication.
Letters that are Person-to-Person
A letter from one person to another are defined as person-to-person letters. These typically deal with personal matters. They can be written as formally or informally as the writer choses.
Your address, be that your business address or your personal address, should be written in the top right-hand corner of the letter. If using software like Word to write the letter, you might consider using a template to help you with spacing and indention. Do not indent paragraphs in the body of your letter. This is called a "block style".
The cover letter is used in addition to your CV when applying for a job. A brief synopsis of laying out this type of letter follows:
Your opening or first paragraph should introduce you, the writer, and what job you are applying for. It is also correct to state how you learned of the job opening.