life · Publishing

Reflections on Working in Publishing Day

Today was OICPS’s annual Working in Publishing Day! Cheers and applause all around. Imagine a day so jam-packed with careers advice that you’re suddenly enthusiastic about your career prospects. That was today. I can hardly believe it’s still Tuesday, but it is.

The day started off bright and early– okay, only at 10:30am, but still– with a brief chat from OBU’s careers centre. Apart from the usual tips (“Proofread your CV and cover letter before sending it”), speaker Mark Turnbull came up with some gems, one particularly stuck with me:

  • Find a specific project a company is doing/has done that interests you and use thatto show your interest in the company. 

After Turnbull was a panel of Brookes alumni who were kind enough to talk to us about how we can use our degree, what benefit it had for them, and what they’re up to now. For instance, some used projects and research they’d completed on the course to explain what the MA in Publishing degree is actually all about. Some employers might not fully understand that and it’s important that we tell them the benefit of it all. 

Other tips from the alumni (and later recruiting agency) panel:

  • Look for new job postings in April as this is the traditional start of the Financial Year (I’m not 100% sure of the accuracy of this, but it was definitely one alum’s point of view)
  • Make sure you only accept a job if it’s right for you and never forget that it’s a two-way process. I heard this same sentiment repeated later by the lovely representatives of Pearson Education.
  • Get a job at a company you like the look of.
  • Don’t be afraid to take on a temporary position!
  • Cater your cover letter (and to a certain extent your CV).
  • Look at exactly what they want for the job and describe how you can fulfill this. 
  • When sending CVs it’s about quality, not quantity.

Allowing some time for lunch, we all met up at 1:30pm for speed networking with representatives from the publishers. I met employees from Hearst Magazines, Palgrave (Marketing and Study Skills), Boardworks, Pearson Education, Barefoot Books and Princeton University Press, as well as had an accidental meeting with Claire Louise Kemp from Atwood Tate. 

Each and every person I met was friendly. It was so reassuring to meet so many helpful and informative people. I can’t really pick a favorite, but I think talking to Vicky Newman from Hearst Magazines was particularly encouraging for me due to my recent interest in magazine publishing. Overall, the day offered a bit of reassurance to me. I kind of feel like I might have a chance now. And I feel reinvigorated and ready to search for that perfect summer work experience/internship and more than that my perfect job!


2 thoughts on “Reflections on Working in Publishing Day

  1. It’s reassuring to know there are opportunities out there for you, especially when you are studying a particular subject. The important thing to remember is to pay heed to the advice you’ve been given and do your best to stand out from the crowd!

    1. I will try! Next job I find I’m definitely taking my cover letter to the career centre… and will be using all of the email addresses I collected today!

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