I have just finished my work experience with the Children’s Division of Penguin Random House. These two weeks have been important for me, firstly, to add some appropriate experience to my CV, but also to establish whether I want to pursue a career in the publishing industry. I treated this experience as an extended job interview, in order to impress someone enough to possibly recommend me for potential work experiences, internships or entry-role opportunities that arise through the contacts they have.
The method for getting work experience with Penguin Random House is to go to the designated Facebook page and apply for whatever role which takes your fancy. For me, I was just desperate to get a foot in the door of a publishing house that I applied for pretty much every editorial, publicity and marketing opportunity that came up in Central London. At the moment, PRH have filled work experience places for a while, but if you subscribe to the events you’ll be notified when any places become available. If you are interested in checking out work experience opportunities with PRH, click on the start your story logo. >>
Everyone in the Children’s department were lovely, and anyone else I happened to see from other departments were equally nice. (I was the only guy in the Children’s department!) This working environment made for a good first experience into the publishing industry, and this was reinforced by the actual work I was tasked to do (not tea-making and photocopying!). I won’t go into lots of detail about my everyday tasks that I did in my two weeks, I’ll save that for my CV, but I will say that on my first week I helped with a Clover Moon book signing (Jacqueline Wilson!). Wilson is the most high profile author I have seen in person, and although I was busy shifting copies of books which she had just signed, it was nice to be involved in a task which put me in the same room as her, as well as heightening my hunger to play a bigger part in the publication of a book in my future career.
One aspect of working in a publishing house which will appeal to my bookish followers is the presence of the wonderful ‘pulp shelf’. This shelf is where there are free copies to take throughout the week. To the right are the books I have brought back with me. If any of you have read them please let me know what you recommend, and feel free to direct me to any reviews you have done.
[ The BFG by Roald Dahl ]
[ Knights of the Borrowed Dark by Dave Rudden ]
[ Zodiac by Sam Wilson ]
[ The Solomon Curse by Clive Cussler ]
[ Lockwood and Co. The Screaming Staircase by Jonathon Stroud ]
[ Prayer for the Dead by James Oswald ]
[ Palace of Treason by Jason Matthews ]
All in all, this has been a very worthwhile two weeks in London. Not only have I took my first step in the publishing industry (with a very reputable publishing house), received plenty of tips on updating my CV and brought plenty of books back with me, but I also made friends with the work experience girl that was working alongside me, and we have chatted about our time with PRH and university on Facebook.