Friday, January 8, 2010

Grad School vs Work

I have this dream of working with books. Yes, I'd love to get paid to write them. Obviously. :P But I really want to help bring other people's books into the world as well. Now, I always assumed I would go to grad school and then try for a job, only now I'm beginning to wonder if I should just jump right out there.

I'm torn between Texas Tech (they have a cool Book History program that would go with publishing) and Purdue (it's Purdue...I mean it's pretty awesome) for grad school but I wouldn't be able to work at a lit agency until after I was finished with school.

So, do I wait another 2 years (after graduation in May 2011) or do I move off and become an intern and work my way up or try to get a job with only a BA in English? Anyone know any agents who might have advice? I follow a lot on twitter and on here but I don't know if they'd mind these types of questions. *sigh*

On a writing note, SNI keeps trying to tempt me when I'm trying to go to bed at night. I don't think I'll be able to stay away until I'm finished with edits...


Weronika Janczuk said...

To break into publishing in "the real world," you need to have some kind of experience, and it's best to get that kind of experience on the side.

Unless you have your mind set, I'd think about going to grad school in NYC, Boston, Baltimore, Chicago, Denver, where there are programs for publishing and a lot of publishing-type stuff going on.

Intern while going to school, even if it's only for a few hours a week (or even a month). It'll be something.

Or you can try interning over the Internet, which I'm doing now (I've done both real-life and online interning, and the real-life will teach you much more).

This is a tough choice, and it's a gamble to go straight into publishing. If you can get a job as an editorial assistant or something of the sort now, I'd say take a year or two off from school, work, build a resume, and then go back to school.

There's no way to predict what the industry will look like in a few years.

As for asking agents, I think if you shoot them an email ("If you have the time to answer . . . ") I think most of them will find the time to get you some feedback, if they care enough. ;)


Amanda J. said...

Hey, thanks! I was pretty sure about Texas Tech but it was bugging me that I wouldn't be near any lit agencies or publishing houses so now I'm up in the air again haha.

I'm going to try to get an internet internship this summer but like you said there's more to learn than I'll be getting so if I decide to go to grad school right off the bat I'd want somewhere to intern.

Thanks for sharing! It definitely helps since you've actually had some experience with all of this.


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