My internship at Hachette Book Group is basically an English major’s dream—unlimited free books and the chance to learn about how they’re made.
You may not be familiar with the name, but Hachette is the third largest trade and education publisher in the world. Hachette publishes books under many imprints including Little, Brown and Company, Disney’s Hyperion, and Orbit. Our authors include Sherman Alexie, Malcolm Gladwell, James Patterson, and Lemony Snicket—just to name a few.
Hachette is a unique publishing company in that it not only publishes books, but it also distributes for a number of smaller companies. In other words, other companies hire Hachette to manufacture and ship their books. This is where my job comes in: my responsibilities are primarily to work directly with Hachette’s customers who have ordered Hachette titles or those of their distribution clients. These customers can range from behemoths like Amazon or Barnes & Noble to individual bookstores. I troubleshoot and maintain their orders, which can often be thousands and thousands of books, as well as answer any questions they may have about a specific title. I also handle unsolicited manuscripts queries from individuals.
In my position, I have utilized many of the skills I’ve learned from my English courses at Wheaton. Since I am directly communicating with important customers, my writing needs to be professional, as direct as possible, and meticulously edited. I also have used the reading muscles that I built at Wheaton (especially in Dr. Colon’s classes!) while familiarizing myself with Hachette’s most popular and recent books in order to assist the customers in the best way possible.
Beyond my duties as an intern, I have gotten a taste of each department through the internship program’s seminar series. Each department—for example, Publicity, Art, and Editorial—explains its roles within the company in an hour-long seminar, which occurs about twice a week. It’s a great way to learn more about the world of publishing and helps me to further determine the direction of my future career path. I’ve also taken advantage of free ARC copies (books that have not been published yet) and the “Take Shelves” which are shelves full of extra books available for anyone to take home.
I’ve learned and read a lot over the last few weeks, and I’m excited—both for the final weeks of my internship and to return to Wheaton in August (I’m taking an E-literature class that I’m looking forward to!).