Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Cover letters: Three Myths

Cover letters are an important part of the submission process, but we'd like to set the story straight about the usefulness of cover letters to IR.

A detailed bio is a crucial part of the cover letter. Myth! Of course you want to brag when you have a boatload of publications, and rightly so--you earned them. But a bio isn't required at all in your cover letter, and the contents of any biographical information have absolutely no bearing on how your work is read. We don't care if you've published ten books or never had anything published at all--we give every submission a full, fair shot.

A cover letter isn't really necessary, since your work is what's important. Myth! (Sort of.) While it's true that your work is what's most important, having easy access to your contact information and the title of the work (or works) you've submitted makes things much easier on us. And if we have good news for you, you want us to be able to get in touch with you, right?

I need to pitch my work in my cover letter. Myth! A cover letter for Indiana Review doesn't need a pitch--we're going to read your work. So let it speak for itself. It's hard to sum up a story in just a few sentences (and even harder to talk about poems), so just let your work doing the talking. We're looking at the quality of your work itself, not how engaging you can make the summary.

We hope these few tips help you, and keep sending us your work!


Anonymous said...

I'm curious.. What do you like to see in a cover letter? Do you not want a list of publications? Do you want to know that I'm a waitress, or that I was a hooker in the nineties? I'm not being snarky, I really want to know!

jobsearch said...

I would like to add another myth here

Myth:Mention salary history and expectations in your cover letter

False! Save the salary discussion for the job interview. You can be rejected at this stage if your salary history is considered very high or very low. So Don't include your salary. If a job ad requests such information, then write that your salary is negotiable and that you would be happy to discuss the salary during the job interview.
Examples of Cover letters

vishnuprasath said...

It's useful information
View salary information for thousands of different companies.
Search for salaries by company, city or profession.

Anonymous said...

Fei Zhuge eyes looked ffxi gil slightly greedy, the immediate metin2 yang exposure of the Courtesan clothes woman, see their own wow gold winks straight throw, breast Luanhuang, d.m.z. some color eve isk greedy, so that one knight online gold side of the purple spirit companions men stare at him, in last chaos gold the He had a rom gold waist-twisting, painful grimace atlantica gold in pain, he looked a purple Ling said: "do pinch me?"