My mother, a children's librarian, read to me in the womb, so my relationship with words and books dates back to before I was born. Frances the badger (BREAD AND JAM FOR FRANCES, A BIRTHDAY FOR FRANCES, etc., by Russell and Lillian Hoban) was my favorite.
I was working as a theater director and supporting myself, first with proofreading, then with copyediting, then with line editing. One day, after eight years of tinsel and sawdust and squalor, Random House offered me a job as a senior copy editor, and the next day I had medical and dental.
My first job after college was at Allure Magazine where I worked as an editorial assistant. I left there to attend the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. While at Columbia I took a book writing and publishing course which led me to the decision to pursue a career as a book editor. After graduating I worked at Scribner as an Assistant Editor and then I moved to Pocket Books.
Nancy S. Miller, Senior Editor Pocket Books, New York Director, Washington Square Press, New York Imprints of Simon & SchusterJanuary 1, 1999 7:49 pm
There have to be common- sense reasons to acquire a manuscript--that it will find its market, that there are creative ways to reach that market--but I also feel I have to fall in love with it on a gut level, or there really won't be a way to make it work. I can say that I have that gut feeling about almost every manuscript I acquire.
When I was ten, my grandmother died. To assuage her grief, my mother started reading romances by the dozen. I discovered her drawer full of them, and from then on, was an avid reader of romance.
When I was in my second year at the University of Virginia, my father hinted that I should winnow my list of bearable professions. Publishing consistently found its way to the top of the list. After that, I threw myself into publishing internships and the Radcliffe Publishing Course with zeal.
My first actual job in publishing was as a sales rep for Farrar, Straus and Giroux, a small literary publisher, in those days still independently owned. They had a wonderful list and I believe they still have more Nobel laureates than any other house, but it was frustrating for me, because I wanted to be in editorial, not sales. So after a few years, I made the jump over to editorial at Cloverdale Press, where I really learned to edit in a lot of different genres. in a sense, that was my start as an editor.
Amy Pierpont, Associate Editor Simon & Schuster, New York Imprint: Pocket Books Parent Company: ViacomOctober 1, 1998 8:26 pm
Q. How did you first become involved in publishing? A. I studied English and Journalism in college in effort to prepare myself for the field. I then attended the Radcliffe Publishing program after which I got my first job in publishing.
Unearthing the deep-rooted creativity and passion that inspires fictional characters requires an author to expect the unexpected. That's one pearl of wisdom author Emily Hanlon shared with writers recently at a workshop focusing on unleashing and developing characters from the imagination.