For years I was uncertain how to turn my love of language and books into a career. First I was going to travel and teach English as a second language and then I decided I would be a high school English teacher. Both options appealed to me, but they didn’t excite me. It wasn't until halfway through my second year at university, when a friend told me about the publishing course at Whitireia, that I knew I’d found what I wanted to do. She told me all about how the course was taught, how everyone went on placements to great publishing houses in the country and how the selection process for entry was really competitive. It sounded perfect. What better course to take than one where you learn everything you need to know by actually publishing books with a select group of people who are just as passionate as you are.
So for two years I worked my butt off to complete my degrees and get accepted into the publishing programme – and boy did it pay off. From hand-making journals on the very first day of class through to working with cover designers and editing a novel about an Assyrian family’s struggles in Iraq, the publishing course has been all I could have hoped for. Not to mention learning from some of the best publishers in the industry and getting paid in books for any voluntary work done!
This year I have gained more practical skills and knowledge than from my four years at university, made life-long friendships and had endless amounts of fun. I’ve also been lucky enough to have a part-time job at Gecko Press, get work experience at Hachette NZ, Penguin NZ and Huia Publishers – and next year I will begin an internship with Huia! The opportunities offered by the course are countless, and I’m so excited to head off into the big, wide world and start my publishing career.