Getting back into the job market is akin to returning to the dating circuit after a divorce or the death of a spouse. With either, the goal is making a good first impression.
As a result, I’ve agonized over cover letters. I’ve developed a near-phobia about them.
They’re the equivalent of putting on your Sunday best for that first date. Not too flashy or too buttoned up but a Goldilocks just right.
As with dating, I feel the pressure to measure up. After all, I was laid off from a newspaper this year, as were more than 13,000 other journalists. And we're all answering the same ads or contacting the same (safe for now) publications about new jobs.
blog at Poynter Online, part of the Poynter Institute in Florida that trains journalists and studies journalism, and operates a Web site aimed at helping journalists -- veterans and new graduates -- get jobs.
He acknowledges the difficulty many applicants have with cover letters to accompany resumes: “You want your letter to stand out from the rest, but you don’t want to go over the edge -- of someone’s desk,” he advises in a short post titled “Killer cover letters.”