“Book Yourself a Job”

“Book Yourself a Job” is the new key phrase on bookjobs.com. Today, I attended a lecture by Tina Joran, the VP of the American Association of Publishers (AAP), which runs the site. She shared with us some insights on job hunting in the industry, as well as discussed some of the issues the industry is facing today.

There are several things you should know about the publishing industry if you think you want to work in it. The publishing industry is not an industry you choose to work in to become rich. In comparison, the business side of publishing (marketing, accounting, etc.) is slightly more profitable then editorial jobs. What this means, however, is that the people who are in publishing are in it because they love what they do.

If you are looking for a publishing job or even an internship, there are several sites that list positions. I’d recommend starting by checking out Bookjobs.com. The site details what different positions are available, and what the responsibilities are of each. Furthermore, it lists positions that are open with AAP members. Another good site to check out for jobs is the Publishers Weekly website. PW magazine is fairly expensive; however they offer a free daily newsletter that is worth signing up for. It can help keep you on top of publishing news. Another website that you can use to a similar purpose is Publishers Lunch. I also recommend looking up any companies you will be interviewing with on their site so that you appear knowledgeable and up-to-date in your interview. Doing a little bit of background research can help you tremendously. During the interview, knowing something about the company allows you to ask intelligent questions (you can always prepare a few questions before hand) and it makes you appear more interested in the company, which in turn makes it more likely you will get the job. Hiring managers like to see that you are interested enough in their company to spend some time learning about it. It also helps you find somewhere that will be a good fit – where you can do the most and enjoy your job the most.
If you are interested in magazine publishing, mediabistro lists a wide variety of jobs. A basic membership is free, and it allows you to browse jobs. The site also lists classes and events. Some of the events are free, and they tend to be great chances to network.

Publishing is, in general, a fairly casual industry. At most companies, the employees do not come in in a suite and tie to work. But it is also an industry that expects certain social manners. This means that you should dress appropriately for your interview – so gentlemen should wear a suit and tie, and young women should wear a suit.

After the interview, within 24-hours you should send a thank-you email to each person you interviewed with. In your email you should thank them for their time, try to bring up one thing that you discussed during the interview and mention a way in which you think you would be a good fit for the company (ex. “After talking to you, I am confident that my ….. skills will help me to do ….. ). Be sure to close with what you want the next step to be… “I am very interested in the job, and hope to hear from you soon.” After you send the email, you should also send a thank you card or letter (handwritten) by regular mail.

Any correspondence with anyone at a potential job should be triple-checked for errors. Be sure to have someone else read over your resume and cover letter, especially if you are applying for an editing job. Any slip will probably be noticed, and if you allow a mistake in your cover letter or resume, what kind of mistakes might you allow to slip into their publication or books?

Some related links:
For How to KEEP the job once you have it, check out this Bosacks aticle (another great newsletter).
How to write a cover letter
How to write a resume
Advertising yourself: Resume and Cover Letter

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Explore posts in the same categories: Becoming Professional, publishing

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