The Intern Diaries (3): Q&A Numero Uno


After my first internship at a literary agency, I put together a free-flowing post about what I learned. Well, now that I am at Bloomsbury, I want to do the same thing as I go, but share it with my readers since I'm quickly discovering that many of you aspire to do the same thing that I am doing now! With 5 months under my belt and several more to go, I think now's a good time to start recording my thoughts! This post series will be posted on Sunday's whenever I get the time.
~*~*~*~

I noticed a lot of people asking questions that were awesome to answer, but not enough to create an entire post on, so I have decided to do a few Q&A posts whenever enough of these questions arise. Here are the first set with a few more already ready for another set, so please don't hesitate to ask me your questions. Odds are they'll be answered somewhere, somehow. (:

1. How long is the typical internship? - @kalebsmome 
The typical internship lasts for the equivalent of a college semester. A typical college semester is 15 weeks, so factor in the fact that some houses have flexible beginning and end dates depending on schedules and I would say about 13 or 14 weeks, though internships are closer to 10-12 weeks. The fact that mine is a full academic year while I am still in college is incredibly long because I was invited to extend to help with a very busy season after I had previously proven myself and impressed my bosses. This is an amazing honor that I'm very grateful I was given the opportunity for. With that in mind, some houses will keep interns for extended periods of time so they don't have to repeatedly hunt every couple months if they are incredibly impressed or if the intern is out of college. Oppositely, some houses, like Penguin, have a very strict internship deadline of 10 weeks that cannot be altered no matter what season you are interning it. It really depends on where you go, what department you are in, where you are in life, and who you manage to impress in your time there.

~*~*~*~

2. When do you think bloggers are best able to send in requests? -Anonymous
Firstly, you should have a blog when sending in request e-mails. If your email says you will start a blog once you get books for review or are in the process of starting one, you most likely will not be considered because you don't have a platform of any kind. I, personally, did not send in my first request until I had been blogging for 11 months. By then I had about 400 followers on my blog and 600 on Twitter. If you're sending in a request after only having blogged one or two months, it's very unlikely you will be sent a book because you haven't been blogging consistently enough for a lengthy period of time. Furthermore, your platform is still in the beginning stages and the point of books is to help get it known to the world. I'm not saying your requests won't be considered if you send them in at 2 or so months of blogging, but you have yet to truly prove yourself and it is honestly worth waiting at this point. You will have very little luck getting physical ARCs and Netgalley may be more your speed.

The best time, in my opinion, to request book is at least 6 months into blogging when you can show you truly have the swing of things and the commitment down. By then you'll also probably have about 300 followers. 300 is a substantial amount of followers, so don't be ashamed of that! You will definitely be considered for ARCs! However, those with 1,000 followers will be considered more, obviously. So, my last tiny piece of advice is go for the smaller titles in this period. If you have 300 followers and you are among 300 requests for 100 copies of say a guaranteed future best-seller, you won't get as much attention as you would a new book coming out by a new author that isn't super hyped, but has a ton of potential and may be that future best-seller with the sequel. I'm really hoping all of this makes sense.

The point is: wait to request ARCs until you have a substantial following and have been blogging for at least 6 months. Anything before then is really early and you most likely won't get anything. Smaller blogs also have better luck on Netgalley and with smaller titles than they do larger titles or for physical ARCs. Patience and consistency is key.

~*~*~*~

3. Are the publicity teams for publishing houses friendly with one another or are they rivals? -@YerAWizardBekka
Okay, so, I kind of love this question. Publicists from different houses are often the best of friends from what I have observed. They can bond of book swapping and an obviously intense love of books without seeing each other every day of their lives. I would guess that there may be some friendly competition since it is part of life to be competitive, but there is no intense competition or dislike in that sense. Publicity tends to be a happy field because we are all essentially book pushing as a living while helping to promote authors behind the scenes. Publicity rivals are just not a thing, but I would totally love to see a blog tour throw-down or something now that you've asked this question. haha 

~*~*~*~ 

4. How do publishers decide who'd they like to invite on a blog tour? - @AwkwordlyEmma
This is actually a really hard question to answer because for everyone it is different. I have done six blog tours on my own at this point and I do my best to spread myself across everyone who has indicated interest in blog tours because as a blogger I know that it really is fun to do them. However, a lot of thought does go into choosing who to invite. First, we want to invite people who have displayed interest in the author that is touring before. Secondly, we typically look at the people who requested the book because it means they have interest in that specific title. We also look at prior history with that individual. People who respond fast and kindly in a positive manner are more likely to get picked than those who rarely respond and aren't always that positive. People who promote their content on social media are great, too, as opposed to people who just post and are done. Also, if people have indicated interest in being on a specific blog tour or are part of a limited street team, that is definitely something to look at, too. Stats are taken into consideration, though are not a deciding factor. And, of course, having previous connections and interactions with that individual for a lengthy period of time indicates a level of trust and reliability that one can easily take comfort in.

~*~*~*~

5. What is your favorite thing about being an intern? -@SassyandBookish & many more
The coolest thing about being an intern, for me, is experiencing the other side. As a blogger myself, I get to work a lot with you guys both directly and indirectly and it's awesome. I feel like I bring a lot of knowledge to the table with firsthand blogger knowledge. I try to expand those who we do blog tours with, how we do blog tours, implement new systems, grow those who are on our connections list, and everything of the sort. So just being able to do professional work with bloggers and come across new blogs to follow as a blogger when I get home is awesome. Seeing Twitter freak outs and smiles everywhere after I do a mailing and your shared excitement when you see my signature at the bottom of a galley letter (six so far!!! omg, I can't believe that I've actually written six galley letters!!) is something that is truly awesome for me. I know that sounds cliche, but knowing that people have looked up to me as a role model despite my young age (I turn 20 tomorrow!!!!!!! ahhh!!!!!) and have faith that one day I can achieve my bookish job goals is definitely something that gives me the warm fuzzies inside.

~*~*~*~

6. Do you have any resume or cover letter tips? -@everybookaworld
I honestly wish I did, but, in reality, I am just a day away from being a 20 year old floundering in the world of internships hoping that I can get that interview and convince them that I am worth hiring. I've been told by many people, even my career counselors at my college, that for someone my age my resume is extraordinary. There's a lot on it from leadership to work experience to other activities. My GPA is high and the resume itself is also pretty to look at. From a young age I knew I wanted to go into books so my resume is very book-centric though it does have my on-campus jobs and activities to show I am involved and also responsible. Everything on my resume was put there strategically as opposed to being a place holder, so my best resume advice is to build yourself up and put yourself in positions to make your resume awesome for what you want to do in the future. Also, experiment with layouts and everything of the sort. It's nice when it is visually appealing and professional. I have distinct memories of sending 30 different resume formats to my parents before we decided on my current one.

As for cover letters, I spent hours upon hours scouring the Internet and comparing a ton of different kinds of letters and pieces of advice before I did my own. It took me 2 days to write the first draft and by the time I finalized it to send off for my internship at a literary agency this past summer, only two sentences from my original draft remained. So cover letters still elude me. I'm sure that as time goes by I will get better at them, but I've only ever sent a cover letter twice. I am sorry I am no help in this regard! :(

But the best advice is that your resume has to be good enough for you to land that interview and once you're in that interview than be you and rock it!

~*~*~*~

7. You've told us about the perfect request e-mail, but what about the "after" of the request e-mail? Do you want the review e-mailed to you? What if it is negative? -@laurayjames
I love this question! Maybe I should do a post about this...Anyway, in regards to the "after" the request e-mail sending in reviews will only ever help you. We have databases to note reviews because they are important and if we see your name on it often, we are more likely to continue you working with you then, say, someone who never turns their reviews in. We don't go tracking you down looking for them, you know? There's barely enough time in the day to go through our inboxes! Negative reviews are up to your discretion. I tend to submit negative reviews more in Netgalley than I do via actual e-mail. They should also never be tweeted at the author or publisher. If you choose to send them in than that is totally okay. You'll only be viewed differently if literally every review you send in is not only negative, but also very mean and feeling like an attack.

~*~*~*~

8. When is the best time to post reviews for review books? -@jesellev
Good question! The best time is about a month before the release date or right after it. If you post the review too early, it may fly under the radar. If you are posting it within a month of publication you are really helping to spread the word right before the title is published, which is always a help. Typically a lot of other bloggers are posting at this time, too, so more reviews will be common to keep the book fresh in people's minds. Posting right after it is published also keeps the hype up for the title when people realize that they can actually buy it now, too.

If you have any questions that you want answered or perhaps something you think will be a great post topic, fill out this form!


~*~*~*~*~

This is the first round of Q&A for my Intern Diaries feature! If you have a question about publishing, internships, my experiences, my thoughts, or anything of the sort, please comment below and I will do my best to include it as a future post topic or in a future Q&A! I hope you guys like this and choose to keep it around because I think this would be something awesome to do once a month. <3

9 comments:

  1. Thank you so much for taking the time to answer our questions Lili!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for having questions! (:

      Delete
  2. I totally love this feature. I thought that it was well written and thoughtful. It was great to see a different perspective on things. This was very good to read.

    Grace

    ReplyDelete
  3. Lili,
    What a great post. I love your honest and heartfelt answers. It's so obvious that you love your job and that you do it extremely well. Thanks so much for sharing and giving all of us a glimpse of "behind the scenes." Liza (WhoRu Blog)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for stopping by, Liza. I really do love this internship <3

      Delete
  4. LOVED this post! It's very helpful and your internships sounds so fun :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is! Thank you for stopping by (:

      Delete
  5. I've been wondering about when the best time to post reviews. As a rule, I never post them earlier than 1 month prior to release date. I just started doing that because on a few approvals that I received from Netgalley stated not to do this so I kind of just adapted it for every ARC haha.

    ReplyDelete