Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Snapshot Diary - OldCastle Books June 2011

I was really lucky to find this placement as OldCastle Books is probably one of the smallest book publishers in the UK, and it was great because it was walking distance from my parent’s house.

After being at 2 smaller book publishers (Little Tiger Press and John Blake), I wanted to once again sample working life in a smaller place. I spent a few months there, so it was also one of the longest placements I have been on. The greatest part of this placement was being able to do a lot of varied tasks. I was able to spend time with the MD, and mix with a team of people who are close and tight-knit.

At OldCastle Books, I spent time out of the office as well as in. For example, I was delighted to be able to work at the book launch for Lyndsay Russell and to publicise Clem Chamber’s books in London – this even got coverage in the local magazine Harpendia. (http://www.harpendia.com/Books.html)

These are the other tasks I was involved in:

  • General admin duties (of course)
  • Database work
  • Using spreadsheets for data input
  • Producing files as part of E-book production
  • Digital marketing
  • Mail outs
  • Checking Amazon Rankings and Author Pages

Overall, this is probably the number one book placement I’ve had in terms of the variation of tasks given. In my opinion it was definitely worth the experience and I developed my skills a great deal.


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  2. Sadly it's very normal and it was the same in my experience to.
    To avoid repeating myself, take a look at a couple of blogs I did in July -

    Perhaps you are not applying enough in advance? If you're applying around this time, I would be applying for Easter 2012 placements, as many placements are filled up until 2012.
    I can't speak for other companies when they say they put our CV's on file, but I can say that they'll get plenty of applications, and I've never heard of someone who applied for a placement, was told that, and then got a response 6 months later. Though what you can do with companies that get back to you is to save their email addresses (create a log like I did), and then you have built up some contacts. Usually they put your CV on file when they don't have any placements.
    I wouldn't call them. If you're looking for placements around about now then the only place with obvious openings is Random House and their work experience page.
    In the meantime, have a read of the blog links above and I've set up a page for 'Where Do I Start?' - some of it may be relevant to you.
    I'll try and do a blog about why people may not get employer responses and solutions.