Monday, June 15, 2009

Columbia publishing course

After graduating in January, I did not have much luck applying to publishing jobs in Boston or NYC. I decided to apply to two summer publishing programs, one at Columbia and one at NYU. While I debated accepting my admittance, I felt that I really needed to take a proactive step toward the career I knew I wanted. I looked into both, and was impressed with how well planned the Columbia program seemed, and how connected the director was.

So now, I find myself at 115th and Broadway, living for six weeks on the Columbia campus. My family lives about 40 minutes away, so I'm familiar with the city, but I've never lived here and am excited to find out more.

It seems like most of my exploring will be done on the weekends, because the CPC handed us a schedule chock full of presentations and group meetings. Each day, we have three presentations from people who are huge in the publishing field, and we're invited to ask them questions about their imprints and experiences. We have three weeks of book talks, and then two weeks of magazines and a week of digital media. To some degree I wish this were all about book publishing, as I took many magazine classes and workshops in college, but it is interesting to compare the two. The last week should definitely be worthwhile, as we'll all be expected to use the internet in everything we do, once we get jobs. A segment of the course also addresses things like interviews and resumes, which promises to be helpful.

Before the course, we had a bunch of assignments. I had to list my favorite books, read an upcoming novel and write a marketing plan for it, read a manuscript and write a reader report, and create a book idea of my own. Each of those will be commented on by real professionals in the field.


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