For Application Week, Catapult staffers share some of their old cover letters in hopes of providing insight into applying for positions in the writing world.
If we’re being honest with ourselves, cover letters are an absolute bummer. How do you distill your excitement (or, sometimes, force your enthusiasm) into one brief likeable-yet-professional page? How much crossover should there be between your cover letter and your résumé? How do you distinguish your letters from one position to another, especially if you’re on the job hunt and are applying to many different positions all at once? Cover letters are one of the main things that could help your job application stand out from the millions (okay, not really) that a hiring committee are reading . . . but, like, how do you do that?
Some of our Catapult staffers were generous enough to dredge up some of their old cover letters they used to apply to positions in the publishing and writing industries to share with you, dear reader. Some letters got them a job, while others did not. All of them include annotations from their authors, now that they are looking back from a (hopefully) wiser place. Our hope is that by sharing these letters, we’ll give you a bit of insight from the “inside” of the industry—whether you’re currently applying or you’re just curious about how one might write a cover letter to apply to a position for a writing job.