Publishing Internships

As an avid reader and writer, a career involving the magic of words appealed to me from a very young age. I was constantly in awe of the worlds and voices that could be created with some paper and ink, and I wanted to be involved in that. However, the years rolled by, and the looming decision of my adult career grew larger and more urgent. People gave their opinions whether I asked them or not.

‘There’s no money in book publishing.’

‘Shouldn’t you consider something more stable, more certain?’

No matter how they phrased it, I could always read the underlying message: You can’t do it. To be fair, maybe I was layering on my own self-doubt to perfectly reasonable statements, but in the end, I listened to what they were suggesting. Rather than follow the path I’d been on since a child, I took a detour and enrolled in Veterinary Biosciences at university.

One semester. That’s how long I lasted.

As students, we were asked to volunteer with a veterinary clinic during our mid-year break. I volunteered for six weeks at my local vet clinic, caring for the animals, observing surgeries, and assisting the clinic staff to the best that a first-year student could (or was allowed to). I learned a lot about myself at that vet clinic, and I gained an immense amount of respect for the people who work there, in any capacity. After the six weeks, I deferred from my course and asked my retail manager to extend my hours.

A year and a half later I enrolled in a Bachelor of Arts, chose my majors, and began my search for editing internships. Now, a recent graduate, I’ve completed two internships and have toed the line of a career in publishing. To me, the failed internship – if you can even call it that – has been just as valuable as the two internships that I completed and loved.

Working at Busybird Publishing has affirmed everything I knew about myself and given me the skills to take that first anxious step into meaningful employment. The skills are, of course, the technical and professional credentials that will help with my employability. But more so, I feel secure in my own power to decide my future.

Whether you’re a student, a recent graduate, or looking to change careers, internships provide you with a trial into the job that you want. And, if you can find a mentor that will help you along the way, you’ll have built connections and real, relevant experience that is invaluable.

Brooklyn O’Connell

Outgoing Publishing Intern

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