Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Liar, liar pants on fire?

Our post last week about cover letter myths prompted some discussion in our office. We were wondering: do people lie in their cover letters? (Have you really been published in the New Yorker? Are you sure that you were shortlisted for the Booker Prize?) Now don't get me wrong, I believe you, but as mentioned earlier, it won't change how we read your submission.

So readers, help satisfy our curiosity and answer our poll on the sidebar to the right. Don't worry--it's completely anonymous.

7 comments:

KrisUnderwood said...

I don't see the point in lying in the cover letter

wheat said...

sorry, I'm too busing lawling over the blue light's current mood.

Anonymous said...

I've never ever lied about anything in my cover letter. However, one grey area I've always wondered about is online vs. print. If you are published in McSweeney's online or New Yorker Online, would it be wrong to say "I've been published in McSweeney's and the New Yorker"?

Native Ink said...

When I first started publishing my poetry, I'd sometimes lump my poetry and fiction credits together and just call them my "work," as in my "work" has appeared in XYZ Magazine. But that's as far as I've gone down the path of embellishment. It really doesn't seem worthwhile to embellish your cover letter, since you'll answer for it eventually.

By the way, on a completely unrelated note: how's your slush pile running these days? I've got some "work" that has been under consideration at IR for over 5 months. Are you just running a little slower than your guidelines state or should I query?

Indiana Review said...

Native Ink - You should always feel free to query when we take longer than four months, but right now, we are running about one month behind on our snail mail submissions, two months behind on the online submission manager submissions. We expect to be caught up by the end of March.

--Jenny

Anonymous said...

Thank you for answering my question, Jenny. Good luck tackling the slush pile.

abdel said...

My all time favorite is the guy who enclosed a personalized rejection letter from the New Yorker as evidence of his writing talent.