I’ve struggled to find work experience in the publishing industry for a few years now.
There aren’t many opportunities in the North, with publishing houses being “too small to facilitate any experience” (
an actual response I once got), and London being too expensive for someone who spent all their savings on simply surviving at university.
UCLan Publishing was the first publishing house to offer me a productive and universal experience in the world of publishing. I reached out to them one day in summer – just on the off chance they could give me something – and I didn’t hear back for months. But I woke to a random email one day, asking if I wanted to join them the following week, and I was thrilled.
I gained skills in editorial to marketing, sales to publicity.
I spent a lot of time in editorial. The team wanted to encourage my interest in that area; they wanted to push me and help me develop skills. My main responsibilities were reading through manuscripts, writing reader reports, creating blurbs, and looking at sensitivity reports.
I gained an insight into the current market of both middle-grade and young adult fiction, learning what types of stories would be successful in such a competitive industry. My favourite part of the placement was getting to read through all the manuscripts; it’s amazing to see how stories transform from drafts to fully published novels. And how the editor helps to shape the story into what it is. I can’t wait to be that person one day.
On top of this, I gained skills and knowledge in other areas of publishing too. I did some publicity stuff, researching and writing content for their e-newsletter, writing a press release for Written Stone Lane, organising their social media schedule, and helping to package and distribute books to key contacts. I learnt it all!
I’m really happy with my placement at UCLan Publishing. I gained invaluable experience and skills in all areas of publishing, and I couldn’t have done it without the help of this brilliant team!
If you don’t know, UCLan Publishing are a small, independent, not-for-profit, student-led publishing house. Their aim is to publish first-class children and YA books, whilst helping to nurture the next generation of publishers. They’re helping to put Northern publishing on the map.
After all those rejections recently, I thought I’d hit rock bottom, but they were just setting me up for this instead. Silver-linings!
Please, please, please, check out UCLan Publishing’s books. It’s important to buy directly from their website, as they don’t have to pay out distribution costs and it helps the amazing team of four people carry on the amazing work they do.
Also, UCLan Publishing host the yearly Northern Young Adult Literature Festival, or NYALitFest for short, which’ll be at UCLan again in March 2020. I picked up some books from their office to review, which you see in the above photo.
Thanks for reading, Lauren X