How to Get a Job in Book Publishing

If you have a lifelong passion for books and an interest in helping authors reach a wider audience, publishing could be right for you. It can be a challenging field to get into, though, no matter how skilled or determined you may be. Here are a few tips.

Getting the Right Education

There are specific publishing programs at various schools, including NYU, Columbia, and the University of Denver. These programs focus specifically on the industry, which can give you a competitive edge.

Some applicants to publishing jobs get in on an English degree alone. Others can access entry-level positions with any degree, or without higher education.

Research the publishing house you think you’d like to work for to see what their job requirements are. Tailor your resume to match the positions and agencies in which you are interested.

Potential Publishing Jobs

There are several areas in which prospective publishing staff can work. Beyond the distinction between trade books — those made for mass consumption — and academic books, job seekers have to consider if they want to land in editorial, production, sales, publicity and marketing, or being an agent or scouting, to name a few career paths.

Starting out in any area often entails being an assistant first. As an assistant, you will be handling paperwork, putting in long hours, and making entry-level wages. Of course, this hard work should eventually pay off with a more lucrative position.

Book Publishing Internships

A lot of people interested in the publishing industry begin with internships, which are valuable for several reasons.

As an intern, you can get a feel for the industry and decide if you like it before committing. Be-ing an intern also gives you the experience you will need to break into the industry if you decide you want to dive in. Even assistants are often expected to have experience.

An internship is where you will make valuable connections and step into the networking world of publishing, which is all about relationships. Internships can be competitive.

Entering the publishing industry can mean a lot of running around and hard work. If this is your intended future career path, considering your primary areas of interest and aiming for an intern-ship is a great place to start.