Q: I have an interview coming up at a large news magazine in New York City, and I was wondering if I should bring a cover letter. I got the interview through a friend. I merely used this friend's name (which has some clout) and sent a copy of my resume in an e-mail and got a reply to come in for an interview. I originally added a short note in the email (like a mini cover letter) but that was about it. Will a cover letter be expected of me when I walk in for the interview?
Also, I don't have a ton of experience for the job but I know I can test well and do a good interview. Plus I have been using the relevant skills needed in other jobs I've done. I have one year in the job experience department for this position, but that was a college paper and a little while back. Considering that I need some luck to land this job, is there any advice you can offer me? I was going to bring in a portfolio of some graduate papers and some clips I copy edited, but beyond that I only have some freelance writing I've done (Web site copy and such). Bottom line is I don't have a sweet portfolio but really, really want this job.
Thanks a lot for your help.
A: A cover letter typically flies by mail and accompanies a resume. You should not need one for the interview.
I would plan to write a brief and thoughtful note afterward, however.
To get ready for the interview, do you research into that company and be ready to ask some sharp questions. Do not ask fake questions calculated to show how much you've learned. Better, ask questions about the company's direction, market position or future that will likely touch on some of the issues company insiders are concerned about. Have your portfolio with you, but don't bring it out and take people through it unless they ask to see it. You don't want to lose interviewing time to portfolio showing.>
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