Hannah Bennett

After finishing my honours degree in English literature, I had two choices: become a teacher, or do something else. That something else ended up being the 2007 Publishing Programme, which was an excellent decision. Throughout the year, the course offered fantastic exposure to the full scope of the publishing process; this wide range of experience thoroughly prepared me for taking my first steps into the publishing industry.

I was offered one of the PANZ internships at the conclusion of the course, and spent a year working as the publicist (among many other things!) at small, but mighty, Awa Press in Wellington. The internship programme provided an excellent chance to begin my publishing career. I moved to Melbourne, Australia, in 2009 and took up a job at John Wiley and Sons as an editorial assistant. After less than a year I was promoted to development editor on the For Dummies imprint, meaning I was responsible for the structural edit and project management of the 15-20 For Dummies books published in Australia and New Zealand every year. Without the background from the Whitireia course, and my subsequent internship, I have no doubt that I couldn't have made such a large step upwards so early in my career.

Being naturally inquisitive, working as an editor gives me a chance to learn about topics I'd never dream of reading about. But what I most love about publishing is being given a unique chance to make a difference, through producing (or marketing, or selling) books that affect people's lives, in whatever small way.

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