My Week at Work Experience
My name is Anna, I’m 17, and I spent the past week interning with Jericho Writers. I’ve just finished my first year of A-Levels, and I’m studying English Literature, history, and politics. I’ve always loved reading, and with that came my enjoyment of English. I’ve always known I want to work with words. Until I was 11, I had my heart set on being a bestselling author, with plans to win Strictly Come Dancing along the way (but that’s another story). When I reached the age when I realised that being an author possibly isn’t the most dependable job, my ambitions changed: I would become an English Teacher. That was before I realised that I did not want to spend my evening marking essays, or dealing with students who really don’t want to be in a classroom learning about pathetic fallacy and sensory imagery.
It was around this point that my aunt’s writing got more serious – she managed to get an agent for her novel! We were all very excited, and I began to learn more about the publishing industry, realising how interesting I found it. In 2019, I secured work experience at Oxford University Press, which only strengthened my desire to work in this field. So, when it came to late 2020 and I had the opportunity to seek more work experience, my first thought was Jericho. My mum is a member, and I’d attended a couple of events already, so I felt pretty confident I’d have a good time. I was correct.
Over this week, I’ve been mainly stationed (virtually, of course) with Writer’s Support (although I have also spent time with the Content team), who have been brilliant in both giving me independence and support in the tasks I’ve been assigned. I couldn’t have asked for a more varied week, from query letter review training and replying to advisory submissions, to writing agent profiles and reading editorial reports. Meetings with various other departments have allowed me to find out as much as possible about the different sides of publishing.
My favourite task was the advisory submissions. This included the most editorial work (which I find really exciting and enjoyable), and I liked having direct contact with members, and being able to see how my advice helped someone. Being welcomed as a member of the team gave me a real flavour of workplace life – I feel really lucky to have had such a relevant and inspirational work experience (especially compared to some of my friends!).
After my time here, I’ve got one year left of compulsory education, after which I hope to study English Lit at university. I’m currently researching different universities (UEA is my top pick so far!), and I really hope to get a job in publishing in the future that I enjoy as much as I’ve enjoyed this week. I can’t mention everyone who’s helped me this week, but without exception, every person has been kind, supportive and encouraging. Thank you to everyone at Jericho – I’ve had a really great time.