HarperCollins

Resume Tips for the Entry-Level Publishing Candidate

                                     

Insider info from one of our recruiters at HarperCollins Publishers:

I’ve been hiring folks into publishing jobs from internships through executive positions for several years now, and in that time I’ve read a lot of really bad resumes and a lot of good ones too! One of the most frequent questions I am asked is: “How do I get an entry-level job in publishing?” I’ll admit, the publishing industry is very competitive. It’s not out of the realm of possibility to say I receive 1,000 resumes for one editorial assistant position if I leave it posted for a week. So how can your resume stand above the others? 

The format of your resume should look good. Perhaps that’s a “duh” for you, or maybe it’s a “huh?“

  • Your resume should be formatted properly, and it should be easy to read.
  • As an entry-level candidate, your resume should be no more than one page.
  • The fonts of all your job titles should match, and the fonts of all the company names, etc.
  • Each of your responsibilities should start with a verb.
  • If you are no longer working at a particular job, that description should be in past tense.

If your resume is a jumble of fonts, or is inconsistent in format, I’m more likely to gloss over it.

Remember: Your resume is a reflection of you, and oftentimes it is the one shot you have to make an impression; make sure it is professional.

Submit a cover letter along with your resume — and I’m not talking about one of those generic “My experience coupled with my professionalism makes me a great match for your firm” ones. When it comes to entry-level jobs, a lot of you are on the same playing field in terms of relevant experience. The cover letter is where you can show your passion for book publishing. I don’t want to see “I am a great fit for [insert publishing company name here]” (which, by the way, I can’t tell you how many times I have received a cover letter with the wrong publisher listed!). I want to know the “why.” It’s great that you want to work at HarperCollins, but why? Why does the imprint (brand of book) the job is in appeal to you? Why are you interested in editorial, sales, publicity? Do we publish one of your favorite authors? Let us know! Have you read a book from HarperCollins so many times the pages are ripping? We want to know that too! If you are applying for an Editorial Assistant position with Harper Voyager, our sci-fi/fantasy imprint, for example, I want to know that you will be happy reading those types of manuscripts ALL THE TIME.

If you don’t submit a cover letter at all, there is a chance a recruiter may make the assumption that you don’t necessarily want this job but a job, and there are plenty of others who genuinely want this one! Plus, writing is a big part of almost all roles in publishing, so reading a cover letter helps us evaluate your writing skills.

And on that note…

There should be no spelling, punctuation, or grammatical errors. We’re a publishing company; words are important to us. Have friends or family read it over. Walk away and come back to it.  Make it count!

What kind of experience should you put on your resume? Publishing internship experience is ideal, of course, but I do know that’s not attainable for all. While in school, participate in extracurricular activities relating to publishing like your school newspaper or literary magazine—that looks great on a resume. If you are able to take courses on copyediting or anything digital—go for it! Also, one of the most valuable experiences you can have is to work at a bookstore.

These are just a few tips based on what I personally look for as a recruiter in the publishing industry. Best of luck to you in your job search, and perhaps I’ll see you in an interview…

—Carolyn Zimatore, Talent Acquisition Manager, HarperCollins Publishers

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Through good therapy and friends and self-love you can practice treating the demon like a hacky, annoying cousin. Maybe a day even comes when you are getting dressed for a fancy event and it whispers, “You aren’t pretty,” and you go, “I know, I know, now let me find my earrings.” Sometimes you say, “Demon, I promise you I will let you remind me of my ugliness, but right now I am having hot sex so I will check in later.”

Other times I take a more direct approach. When the demon starts to slither my way and say bad shit about me I turn around and say, “Hey. Cool it. Amy is my friend. Don’t talk about her like that.” Sticking up for ourselves in the same way we would one of our friends is a hard but satisfying thing to do. Sometimes it works.

Even demons gotta sleep.

—  Amy Poehler being perfect, as usual.

Photo credit: John Nowak/CNN

On the Passing of Elmore Leonard:

As you have probably heard, Elmore Leonard passed away at 7:15 this morning due to complications from a stroke. He was at home surrounded by his loving family.

It feels not in keeping with Elmore’s “no fuss” persona to try to pay tribute to this great man. But Elmore was a true legend—unpretentious, unbelievably talented, and the coolest dude in the room.

William Morrow has published 47 titles with Elmore since 1980 with more than 8 million books in print in the US, including e-books. He has won more than a dozen literary awards, including a medallion from The National Book Foundation saluting lifetime achievement.

All of us at HarperCollins will miss working with this national treasure and one of our favorite authors of all time.

—Michael Morrison, President & Publisher, HarperCollins

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We want to send a HUGE HUGE HUGE thank you to the good folks at doubledaybooks, harpercollins, penguinrandomhouse, and Hachette for donating 2015 new releases, beautiful box sets, and other treasures to us for Independent Bookstore Day, bookstoredaynyc.

Catch a great title (for a great price!) and support independent – AND HWBC’s mission to end homelessness and AIDS in NYC. 

NIMONA by @Gingerhazing has been nominated for a Harvey Award for Best Online Comics Work! Congratulations, Noelle! You’re in good company. 

Best Online Comics Work

(via ‘Hawkeye’ and ‘Saga’ Lead The 2013 Harvey Award Nominations)