“OVERQUALIFIED's cover letters are like a slap in the face, butthe slap is hilarious, and you can't stop laughing, and as soonas it’s over you want to tell all your friends about the slap.You know the kind?”
— Ryan North, Dinosaur Comics
“Joey Comeau’s OVERQUALIFIED is Judy Blume’s ARE YOU THERE,GOD? IT’S ME, MARGARET as chewed up and spit out by J. G.Ballard. . . . A book whose melancholy is leavened by a surprisinghilarity.&dquo;
— Paul Di Filippo,author of THE STEAMPUNK TRILOGY and COSMOCOPIA
Cover letters are all the same. They’re useless. You write the same lies over and over again, listing the store-bought parts of yourself that you respect the least. God knows how they tell anyone apart, but this is how it's done.
And then one day a car comes out of nowhere, and suddenly everything changes and you don’t know if he’ll ever wake up. You get out of bed in the morning, and when you sit down to write another paint-by-numbers cover letter, something entirely different comes out.
You start threatening instead of begging. You tell impolite jokes. You talkabout your childhood and your sexual fantasies. You sign your real name and you put yourself honestly into letter after letter and there is no way you are evergoing to get this job. Not with a letter like this.
And you send it anyway.
Joey Comeau writes the comic A Softer World, which has appeared recently in The Guardian and been profiled in Rolling Stone, and which Publisher’s Weekly called, “subtle and dramatic.” His self-published first novel, Lockpick Pornography, sold out its print run of 1000 books in just three months. In 2007 he published It’s Too Late to Say I'm Sorry, a collection of short stories. The A Softer World website (asofterworld.com) has been online since 2003 and has an average daily readership of 70,000 people worldwide.
Published: April 2009
Dimensions: 5.25 x 8.25 in.
"Joey Comeau has made the unreadable not just readable, but beguiling in its digressions and personal revelations." — Eye Weekly
“One of the season's most remarkable books.” — Macleans.ca
“A collection of wry, clever and demoniacal job-application letters, teeming with knife-edged malice and stomach-tearing hilarity. . . . Overqualified successfully deludes the fear of the faceless corporate entity by empowering the faceless applicant who has nothing to lose except securing a job he or she probably doesn't want. If Comeau's rebel-yell manifesto catches on like old Prometheus's gift did all those years ago, human resources will never be the same again." — Globe and Mail
"Each letter rapidly digresses into something more akin to a diary entry than a professional missive. There is speculation as to humanity's future, reminiscences from the narrator's childhood, confessions of vulnerability and of sexual desire, all punctuated by vitriolic humour and unsettling instances of violence. There is much frustration in these letters - born of capitalism's absurdities and of personal calamities - but there is also humour, compassion, and joy." — Quill & Quire
"There have been spoof letter-writing books in the past, like 'The Lazlo Letters' by Don Novello (a.k.a. Father Guido Sarducci) and several that followed. While the protagonist in 'Overqualified' is just as unhinged as his predecessors, he's significantly less giddy. A real story unfolds in these pages, about a departed brother and the sibling left behind. It's sad and fragmented and, in places, funny. This slender epistolary novel is charming." — Los Angeles Times