Publishing Work Experience Master Post

I think a lot of people feel that it is almost impossible to get publishing work experience in the UK outside of London, but I’m here to tell you that’s not true! There are definitely more publishing houses located in London, but an opportunity to get experience in the publishing industry might be closer than you think.

I’ve decided to set myself a task; I’m going to try and provide an exhaustive list of publishing houses, and their work experience programs in the hope that more people will be able to find the experience they need near them! I am reluctantly including unpaid alongside the paid experience featured here, but I do not endorse unpaid work experience, especially if it’s over two weeks.

Firstly the pub interns twitter needs to be listed here! They post entry-level roles, tips, and work experience opportunities from publishers some of which are only posted to Twitter. Social media is a fantastic resource when hunting down work experience, but Atwood Tate and Inspired Selection are also wonderful places to find more permanent roles within the industry. Creative Access also has some wonderful opportunities pop up regularly.

Secondly, remember that dropping a local publisher an email cannot hurt, but be prepared for rejection! They may not have the money or the room for an intern, but it’s always worth trying.

Thirdly I wanted to add that before taking one of the unpaid opportunities below, please consider doing something admin related instead. The skills you would develop by working at a temp agency are so similar to what you’d need to enter the industry, and they’ll actually pay you for the work you do.

Last Updated: 29th of April 2021

Work Experience Diaries:
Inside Story | Vintage | Seren | University Wales Press 
First Month Publishing Update | Three Month Publishing Update
Six Month Publishing Update | One Year Publishing Update 
When to Quit: Publishing Update | Two Years in Publishing 
Publishing Editions: 
Publishing Skills | Dealing with Rejection
Remote Interviews | SYP Podcast ft. Me | Making a Sideways Move
Imposter Syndrome | Q&A video with Me | Work in Publishing Week: Fave Posts
Prioritizing in Publishing: Part one | One Year Working from Home


Continue reading “Publishing Work Experience Master Post”

April ’21 Wrap Up

So here we are another month another wrap-up. Lock-down is lifting but I still find myself reluctant to leave the house, I’m not quite ready to test my rocky social skills on acquaintances and strangers, but this is causing a fair bit of fomo and I could really do without it. I did buy a pair of quad-rollerskates though in an effort to try and bring some sort of exercise back into my life, I wish I could bring back the head-space that had me loving the gym back in February 2020 but we’re going to try learning something new instead. I’ll keep you guys updated on my progress!

Post-wise I actually posted more than normal this month, hurrah for a busy month! I’ve updated the Publishing Work Experience Master Post, alongside all the loveliness below so don’t forget to take a look at that too.

March Wrap-up ’21 | Women’s Prize Book Haul | Review: A Touch of Darkness
Review: Gideon the Ninth | Review: King of Scars

What I read in April

Can you tell that Rule of Wolves and the Shadow and Bone Netflix series came out this month because I can. Basically, I put everything off and re-read the Shadow and Bone trilogy and the Nikolai Duology, and if I’m honest I might get through the Six of Crows duology next month because who cares about my to be read. It’s been nice to be back in this world with some of my favourite characters and these books are just so easy to read.

The nice part is that I made it through both my currently reading books for this month! Detransition, Baby and A Dark and Hollow Star were two very different books and hopefully my reviews of each book with show up next month.

Continue reading “April ’21 Wrap Up”

Review: King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

Series: King of Scars #1
Goodreads: King of Scars
Publisher: Orion Children’s Books
Buy: Bookshop.org UK | US
Synopsis: The dashing young king, Nikolai Lantsov, has always had a gift for the impossible. No one knows what he endured in his country’s bloody civil war–and he intends to keep it that way. Now, as enemies gather at his weakened borders, Nikolai must find a way to refill Ravka’s coffers, forge new alliances, and stop a rising threat to the once-great Grisha Army.

Yet with every day a dark magic within him grows stronger, threatening to destroy all he has built. With the help of a young monk and a legendary Grisha general, Nikolai will journey to the places in Ravka where the deepest magic survives to vanquish the terrible legacy inside him. He will risk everything to save his country and himself. But some secrets aren’t meant to stay buried–and some wounds aren’t meant to heal.

Review: So I finally sat down and read the Nikolai duology all in one go. I’d been saving it because I know Leigh is partial to a cliff-hanger and I wanted to avoid that whole experience, so I waited patiently for Rule of Wolves and now I’m going to release the reviews back to back too! There’ll be a few spoilers for other novels in the Grisha series below.

Right, first things first, this book was a surprisingly mediocre experience for me, just so we’re both on the same page before we get into things. King of Scars and I just did not click. I’d been really looking forward to a narrative based around Nikolai but I think he ended up getting the least amount of character development, and that’s not to say I didn’t love the addition of Zoya and Nina’s perspectives, it was just unexpected. In fact, Zoya completely steals the show from Nikolai and her story-line and characterization just feels better than his, to the point where I kind of wish this book was completely Zoya focused. Zoya is powerful, talented, and her snark with Nikolai was right up my street. I really feel like Bardugo excels when it comes to dialogue and relationships between characters, and it’s always a joy to read the characters interacting with each other.

Continue reading “Review: King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo”

Review: Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir

Series: The Locked Tomb #1
Goodreads: Gideon the Ninth
Publisher: Tor Books
Buy: Bookshop.org UK | US
Synopsis: The Emperor needs necromancers.

The Ninth Necromancer needs a swordswoman.

Gideon has a sword, some dirty magazines, and no more time for undead bullshit.
Brought up by unfriendly, ossifying nuns, ancient retainers, and countless skeletons, Gideon is ready to abandon a life of servitude and an afterlife as a reanimated corpse. She packs up her sword, her shoes, and her dirty magazines, and prepares to launch her daring escape. But her childhood nemesis won’t set her free without a service.

Harrowhark Nonagesimus, Reverend Daughter of the Ninth House and bone witch extraordinaire, has been summoned into action. The Emperor has invited the heirs to each of his loyal Houses to a deadly trial of wits and skill. If Harrowhark succeeds she will become an immortal, all-powerful servant of the Resurrection, but no necromancer can ascend without their cavalier. Without Gideon’s sword, Harrow will fail, and the Ninth House will die.
Of course, some things are better left dead.

Review: Gideon the Ninth has been on my to be read since its release back in 2019, I mean who can say no to lesbian space necromancers? not me. I’ll admit though that I found this harder to get into than I thought, but I think the fault lays entirely with my kindle and my goldfish sized brain. This book introduces so many new terms and characters, and if I’d picked up the hardback I would have easily been able to flick to the back and enlighten myself, but instead I was reading on my kindle and didn’t realize there was a glossary until I’d finished the whole thing. My single brain cell really let me down here so I’m not holding it against Gideon, and I really did love this book (to the point where I’m probably going to attempt a Harrow cosplay build).

Continue reading “Review: Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir”

Review: A Touch of Darkness by Scarlett St. Clair

Series: Hades and Persephone #1
Goodreads: A Touch of Darkness
Publisher: Self Published
Buy: Bookshop.org UK | US
Synopsis: Persephone is the Goddess of Spring by title only. The truth is, since she was a little girl, flowers have shriveled at her touch. After moving to New Athens, she hopes to lead an unassuming life disguised as a mortal journalist.

Hades, God of the Dead, has built a gambling empire in the mortal world and his favorite bets are rumored to be impossible. After a chance encounter with Hades, Persephone finds herself in a contract with the God of the Dead and the terms are impossible: Persephone must create life in the Underworld or lose her freedom forever. The bet does more than expose Persephone’s failure as a goddess, however. As she struggles to sow the seeds of her freedom, love for the God of the Dead grows – and it’s forbidden.

Review: I’ve recently descended into booktok hell and alongside that swift descent I rekindled my love of Greek mythology, so when A Touch of Darkness popped up on my for you page it felt like fate. A spicy Hades and Persephone retelling while I’m gripped by Lore Olympus, yes please, but this book ended up being a major flop for me.

Continue reading “Review: A Touch of Darkness by Scarlett St. Clair”

Women’s Prize for Fiction Longlist 2021: Book Haul

Recently I’ve been falling a little in love with literary fiction. I’m not usually the biggest fan, and I don’t normally review this genre on the blog, but lockdown has got me stepping outside my comfort zone. It all started with Boy Parts back in August (which I did review btw), then I went on to read Breasts and Eggs, and after the Women’s Prize for Fiction’s longlist was announced I figured I’d pick up a few of the nominated titles.

I decided I would pick the books based entirely on the blurbs, no reading other peoples reviews, so it would feel like I’d wandered into Waterstones and happened upon them. Is this the best way to buy books? maybe not, but it has made me really excited to sit down and fully immerse myself in their worlds. So, I figured I would make a little list of my purchases so you can see which blurbs ended up catching my eye, and what I’m planning on reading before they announce the winner in a few months. I may have already finished Luster and I’m about halfway through Detransition, Baby so I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to rise to this challenge!

Luster by Raven Leilani
White book cover with a picture of the lower half of a black woman's face, she is wearing read lipstick. 
White text reads: Luster
Orange text reads: Raven Leilani

Edie is just trying to survive. She’s messing up in her dead-end admin job in her all-white office, is sleeping with all the wrong men, and has failed at the only thing that meant anything to her, painting. No one seems to care that she doesn’t really know what she’s doing with her life beyond looking for her next hook-up. And then she meets Eric, a white, middle-aged archivist with a suburban family, including a wife who has sort-of-agreed to an open marriage and an adopted black daughter who doesn’t have a single person in her life who can show her how to do her hair. As if navigating the constantly shifting landscape of sexual and racial politics as a young black woman wasn’t already hard enough, with nowhere else left to go, Edie finds herself falling head-first into Eric’s home and family.

Goodreads: Luster by Raven Leilani

Continue reading “Women’s Prize for Fiction Longlist 2021: Book Haul”

March Wrap Up ’21

Somehow it is April, and I’m enjoying a much needed long weekend this bank holiday! I’ve actually been using this weekend to work on some cosplay stuff, which has been lovely, and playing a bit of Persona 4 Golden and Hades (again) rather than picking up a book. It’s nice to do other things sometimes right? I think I may be in a bit of a rut reading-wise, and I’m struggling to pick anything up after being so thoroughly gripped by Luster (review incoming) earlier in March. I’ve been reading some really punchy contemporary literary fiction lately and I think it’s hard for me to switch back to a young adult lit mentality, which is slightly ridiculous because I have read many fantastic YA books, but it’s the only thing I can think of that could cause it.

Anyway, onto the blog related stuff! I’m actually planning a bit of a publishing q&a post and I’ll be putting a call for questions up on twitter in a week or so, but if you’ve got a burning publishing question and you think I could answer it drop me an email over here. I also have a clutch of books I’ve read recently and just never reviewed, so I’m hoping to bombard you with reviews including my thoughts on Gideon the Ninth and A Touch of Darkness! But let’s get back to what went live in March:

February Wrap-up | Review: Reaper of Souls
My Webtoon Top Ten | One Year Working from Home

What I read in March

Okay, so I’m adding in a new segment to these posts to talk about what I read alongside what I plan on reading! I haven’t been good at reviewing everything that I’m reading each month, so I thought this would be a great way to let you guys know what could be coming your way. We can also be friends on Goodreads as that bad boy is usually completely up to date.

This month I managed to make it through four whole books! Gideon the Ninth, The Other Black Girl, Luster, and A Touch of Darkness, but I don’t want to spoil my upcoming reviews so I won’t say much more about these. The addition of a What I Read In… should really highlight my inhability to stick to any kind of plan when it comes to what I’m reading, and hopefully encourage me to pick up what I’d planned to read.

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One Year Working from Home: Publishing Edition

So, as of the 16th of March it’s officially been one whole year of working from home for me. Oxford University Press actually shut a whole week earlier than the country, we only really expected to be out of the office for a couple of weeks at most, and I haven’t been back to the office since. I then, rather quickly after that, moved back home to Wales and my parents rather than continuing to pay my exorbitant Oxford rent. I got incredibly lucky that my flatmate and I were already planning a move, and so had decided not to renew our lease, but this pandemic has certainly taught me the value of negotiating a break clause! The move home has definitely had its pros and cons, but I’ve surprised myself with the fact that I’m in no real rush to return to Oxford and my commute.

I don’t know if it’s been the same for you but work from home has been a revolutionary experience. It’s highlighted the chasm between entry-level and the upper echelons of publishing in London, but has also opened the industry up to hiring candidates that don’t want to make the overpriced south-east their home. I’m hoping to make the situation a little more permanent post-pandemic, I love the Oxford office and the ducks but not its impact on my wallet and I have very little interest in returning to a house share, so I’m hoping to remote work with just one or two days in the office when we eventually return. Will getting up at 5am to catch a train to work suck? Yes, but it’ll still be cheaper than returning to Oxford full-time and I’ll actually be able to afford my own home some day.

Continue reading “One Year Working from Home: Publishing Edition”

Webtoon has taken over my life.

So I made the mistake of getting into Lore Olympus towards the end of the summer. A couple of friends had mentioned pulling together a cosplay group and wondered if I’d be interested, and so like a fool I went ahead and started something that my group chat were in love with.

Unsurprisingly it was a hit. I was instantly in love with the comic and devoured all the available chapters in just under 48hrs, but once I was finished I desperately wanted more. For those who haven’t used Webtoon before you can buy early access to chapters using coins, but I’m strictly opposed to in-app purchased and so that wasn’t happening. This is where my love got slightly out of control. Lore Olympus is the weed of Webtoon, the gateway drug into a land filled with weekly updated comics, and there’s just so many fabulous ones to choose from.

I start reading Webtoon before I’ve even made my first cup of tea in the morning, I open up the app to check which comics have been updated and read the chapters instantly. Webtoon is bringing me romance in graphic form, and some of my faves are definitely ones I didn’t expect to love. It’s also been the thing that has been pulling me away from my to be read recently (usually this is a job for fanfiction), so I figured that I may as well get some content out of it. Yep, this is a list post with a reeeally long lead in…anyway here are a few of my fave Webtoons of the moment!

Continue reading “Webtoon has taken over my life.”

Review: Reaper of Souls by Rena Barron

Series: Kingdom of Souls #2
Goodreads: Reaper of Souls
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Buy: Bookshop.org UK | US
Synopsis: After so many years yearning for the gift of magic, Arrah has the one thing she’s always wanted—at a terrible price. Now the last surviving witchdoctor, she’s been left to pick up the shattered pieces of a family that betrayed her, a kingdom in shambles, and long-buried secrets about who she is.

Desperate not to repeat her mother’s mistakes, Arrah must return to the tribal lands to search for help from the remnants of her parents’ people. But the Demon King’s shadow looms closer than she thinks. And as Arrah struggles to unravel her connection to him, defeating him begins to seem more and more impossible—if it’s something she can bring herself to do at all.

Review:  I received this digital copy in exchange for an honest review, thanks HarperVoyager.

So, when I got an email from HarperVoyager offering me an eARC of Reaper of Souls I swiftly broke my Netgalley ban so I could read it. I managed to win a physical ARC of Kingdom of Souls back in 2019 (you can read my review here), and it was a series that I definitely wanted to continue reading.

Reaper of Souls picks up pretty much where Kingdom of Souls left off, so just in case you hadn’t realised there’ll be spoilers for the first book ahead! Arrah is dealing with the fall-out after her families betrayal and attempt to free the Demon King, and with her role as the last remaining witchdoctor. In this book we also get a few other perspectives in the form of her love interest Rudjek and the Orisha Dimma’s memories, their perspectives are a great and necessary addition as Arrah and Rudjek split from each other and go on their own journeys.

Continue reading “Review: Reaper of Souls by Rena Barron”

February Wrap Up ’21

Hi, hello, anyone actually ready for March yet? I cannot believe that February has been and gone, how has this happened. My office in Oxford closed officially on the 23rd of March, so it’s quickly becoming a whole year since I’ve sat at my desk at OUP and I miss seeing peoples faces. I love the freedom work from home has given me, lunch time naps have been a newfound ability that I love, but I miss my independence and friends.

The part I’m finding scariest, I suppose, is the worry of what the heck I’ll do when lockdown lifts and we’re free to move. Work from home allows me to live anywhere, but I’m so worried that moving away from the southeast will limit my career options. I really am hopeful that more publishing companies will be offering more remote opportunities at all levels, but the closer we get to even the vaguest hint of normal the less likely this seems. It’s a real shame because the industry has proved that it can function without forcing people to exist in London, but hey maybe they’ll get there eventually.

Anyway, lets end this little pity part and push on with the wrap-up. It was a quiet month on the blog, but here are the two lovely posts I published this month:

January Wrap-up | Review: Mexican Gothic
Prioritsing in Publishing: Trade, Impact, and Monograph

Currently Reading

My whole getting my “advanced reader copies read” thing didn’t really work out last month. I did manage to read Reaper of Souls though (review incoming), and I started a book I’ve been waiting forever to read Gideon the Ninth so hopefully that review will come out this month too! My copy of Klara and the Sun arrives this week too, I probably won’t be reviewing it but I’m so excited to read another Kazuo Ishiguro book.

To Be Read

So I need to carve out some real time this month to get through arc’s! This time we’re going to focus on Hall of Smoke and The Cup and the Prince, but I really want to make an earnest attempt at There’s No Such Thing as an Easy Job before I dnf it. Hopefully, my mental health will improve and we’ll be powering through books and reviews like a beast!

February has been a bit of a mess, but I’m hopeful that as we come out of the darker winter months I’ll feel much better. Vitamin D and longer days really do make me feel better and more productive, so look forward to more from me this month!