….. Publishers Association chief executive Richard Mollet’s comment on the latest industry growth figures.
Great news for the publishing industry – and for book lovers (and ebook lovers) everywhere! The UK media industry is thriving, online publishing in increasing exponentially, but the ‘humble’ book is holding its own too. Rumours of its death at the hands of digital publications were much exaggerated. The ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ phenomena played some part in this, but also some genres, including children’s books and ‘high end’ books are stubbornly sticking to the physical book.
All this is also excellent news for the many PPLS students who are interested in exploring publishing as a career – it’s a thriving area, so will be continually recruiting.
(Graduates from all PPLS subjects have gone into publishing roles with a range of different publishers, large and small, or gone on to PG publishing courses thoughout the UK over the last few years).
It’s also thriving in Scotland in general, and Edinburgh in particular – great for all those graduates who want to stay in Scotland.
So that’s the good news…………..
However, publishing is one of those career areas without very clearly defined career paths – the one ‘given’ being that you’ll need some sort of experience to get your foot in the door. Your student years are great for starting to investigate different roles in publishing and developing your experience – by getting involved in the editing and production side of various relevant student societies and journals including:
- The Student newspaper
- Nomad magazine
- Phil Soc journal
….and any other society that’s related to the published word, or needs some published content, on-line or in physical media.
Plus Edinburgh is a great place to be studying, as it has a cluster of publishing houses, and is also a City of Literature, with its excellent annual International Book Festival – all invaluable resources for anyone with an interest in publishing.
(Though if you’ve come late to the idea of publishing as a career, and are nearing the end of your time at Edinburgh, there’s still ample opportunity to gain experience outwith student societies, and Scotland – browse our online Publishing careers information).
Tips for gaining experience and networking in Scotland.
- Use the Publishing Scotland website to track down all the publishers in Scotland
- send out speculative applications to ask for work experience
- up your social media career-and job-hunting skills – publishing uses social media a lot!
- Sign up to Twitter (if you’re not already on it), start following publishing houses, and set up a publishing Twitter list (use mine at https://twitter.com/JanetForsyth/publishers , if you want a starting point) – many publishers tweet their opportunities before advertising anywhere else. Plus you can keep up to date with industry happenings easily.
- check the Edinburgh City of Literature website, which brings together all things literary in one site – events, information, opportunities, and more. Plus consider attending one of their Literary Salons to network with like-minded people – those with an interest in books and publishing.
Plus consider following the insightful blog ‘Diary of a Publishing Professional’ from Steff Lever, English Literature student-turned publishing intern-turned graduate-turned employee at a leading UK publisher. Her blog includes work shadowing and internship opportunities as well as lots of advice on getting into the sector.
And finally, if you want to discuss your strategy for getting into publishing with a careers adviser, come and see us at the Careers Service.