Interning at Penguin: Life of a Book Nerd

Megan WilliamsMegan Williams
Rho Epsilon Chapter
Florida State University
Tallahassee, FL

It’s hard to believe sometimes our alphabet only has 26 letters. These 26 letters create anything and everything the mind can imagine. From this blog post to classics like A Tale of Two Cities, even childhood favorites like The Giving Tree. This is one of the many reasons I fell in love with the English language, and like many of us wanted to pursue it during college and after. For some, people told you how crazy or useless this major would be. You pay thousands of dollars for a college education and simply learn about your native langue. However, English is much more involved than others realize.

I lucked out though. I’ve always been a complete book nerd since I was little; dressing up as Amelia Bedelia instead of the Power Puff Girls or a Disney princess for my 3rd grade Halloween party. I have been able to turn my passion for stories into something more during my time at Penguin Random House as Razorbill’s intern; razorbill, as in the imprint responsible for titles like Jay Asher’s 13 Reasons Why or Richelle Meads Vampire Academy series.

mwilliamsblog2As an intern I am constantly learning and reading something new and exciting. Going into this internship I figured I would simply sit at my desk reading books all day. Although, I quickly learned this internship would be much more hands on. While I do spend a majority of my time reading books or manuscripts—which are under consideration to being acquired—I also get to learn about the industry. I never would have guessed until this summer the books we see on the shelves at Barnes and Noble took months and months to find a home there. The new release novels, while new to the public, have been a year and a half in the making. From acquiring the book to line-edits and cover design it really takes an army to create just one of the novels we find ourselves reading.

When I first started in June, everyone around me was working towards and preparing for something the industry calls Launch. Not knowing what this was I quickly became enticed by the process. A complete year in advanced editors from every imprint must defend and sell their upcoming titles to the entire sales team for its division. Such a daunting and stressful task is not something I ever expected in editors to partake in. However, I am quickly learning there is a whole other side the publishing industry offers besides what I learned in my classes at school.

But the best part about this internship is I’m not limited to only interacting with one department. Each week Penguin sets up lunches and talks for interns. This way we get personal stories, advice, make connections with others who started out right where we once were.

New York itself can be the strangest and greatest city all at once. Not many places you will find a man in an expensive suit on the subway next to a Brooklyn hipster; a mom and her kids sitting on one bench, and a homeless man sleeping across from them on the other. I think it is this diversity which makes the city such a creative hub. It gives off this enticing, drug inducing vibe. Making its inhabitants believe anything and everything is possible with some hard work and a lot of luck. This constant go environment seems to make Manhattan keep spinning.

It truly is the city that never sleeps. Thankfully for me the publishing industry takes full advantage of “summer Fridays.” For an intern like me this means I don’t have to work on Fridays, getting a full three day weekend to explore. Even though Manhattan is a small island with a large population, there are still so many beautiful places and spaces to explore.

mwilliamsblog1By far the most appealing view I have found belongs to The Met. After careening through all the museum has to offer, visitors are treated to a breathtaking view of the city atop the building in their rooftop garden. The foliage around the city is a fresh, bright green. Onlookers can see the skyscrapers lining the clear blue sky for miles on end. It’s the perfect 360 view of the city, putting you at eye level with the central park tress.

When you are walking through the city it seems like such a large and intimidating place, but I can’ help but remember the very first view I had of the city at a time like that; flying in on the plane from Florida. The pilot circled over the Brooklyn Bridge and around the Statue of Liberty. When you see the city as something so small, you realize it is not such an intimidating place.

The Penguin Group (USA) ten-week paid summer internship is offered to current undergraduate Sigma Tau Delta members. The internship takes place in New York, NY, with exact dates to be determined by agreement between the recipient and Penguin Group (USA). The recipient will work 28 hours per week, earning minimum wager. Sigma Tau Delta will provide the recipient an additional $1,500 stipend to assist with travel and housing expenses. Submissions will be accepted through Monday, January 26.

View: Position Description and Application Instructions

What to Do in Albuquerque: Suggestions from UNM English Majors (Part 3)

Students of
University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM

Greetings, Sigma Tau Delta members! As Professional Writing students at the University of New Mexico (UNM) in Albuquerque, we’re looking forward to your visit to our city for the 2015 Sigma Tau Delta Convention.

“Albuquerque is home to many talented artists whose works can be found in shops and galleries throughout the city. Nob Hill is an eclectic mile-long stretch of Central Avenue (close to the university) where local artisans sell their creations. Ooh Ahh carries high quality, reasonably priced jewelry, while Mariposa Gallery offers jewelry as well as artwork in various media. For higher-end, beautiful designs, Lily Barrack is hard to beat. Local pottery can be found in abundance. A personal favorite of mine is Kelly Jo Designs on 4th Street. She turns and hand paints her pottery using bright, vibrant colors that capture the landscapes and rugged beauty of New Mexico. Krysteen Waszak paints beautiful New Mexico landscapes on canvas as well as on furniture, while Travis Bruce Black has made a name for himself with his mosaic-like watercolors of birds and animals. Both have galleries in Old Town.” (Suggested by Terry Auvenshine)

St. James Tearoom“Step back in time, with friends, to enjoy afternoon tea at the St. James Tearoom. Sit in a nook that accommodates four people, a library that accommodates six people, or out on the patio. You’ll enjoy a leisurely afternoon full of tea and treats. ‘Savories’ like ‘Dr. Black’s Prosciutto-wrapped Fig’ and ‘The Reverend’s Greens’ make up the first course, followed by assorted ‘Breads’ such as ‘The Butler’s Citrus Scone.’ To top it off, ‘Sweets’ include ‘The Murderous Mousse,’ ‘Miss Scarlett’s Red Velvet,’ and many more tasty treats. Choose from three menus that change monthly and include vegetarian and gluten-free options. For reservations, call 505-242-3752. (Suggested by Meralyn Werner)

Taqueria Mexico

Taqueria Mexico

“Here’s what you need to know about New Mexican food. This culinary genre, which is neither Mexican nor Tex-Mex (and don’t make the mistake of suggesting that it’s similar to either), is the fuel of the city. Ranging from carne adovada burritos to green chile-topped pizza, New Mexican food is the perfect representation of Albuquerque. But where can you sample this delectable fare? Local ‘Burqueños’ will happily tell you about their best-loved restaurants. Favorites include Sadie’s of New Mexico, El Pinto, Los Cuates, and Garcia’s Kitchen, among many other joints that serve up equally tasty fare. Walking around the Duke City, you’ll find a number of restaurants renowned for their New Mexican cuisine. Want a top-notch green chile cheeseburger covered in roasted green chile? Head over to one of the many locations of Blake’s Lotaburger. Searching for authentic and delicious chile rellenos (a stuffed green chile) and tacos? Stop by Taqueria Mexico, a local favorite nestled in downtown Albuquerque. Or are you craving a breakfast burrito stuffed with scrambled eggs, bacon, potatoes, cheese, and (of course) chile? Look no further than the Frontier Restaurant, just south of the University of New Mexico.” (Suggested by Mike Mulcahy)

These are just some of the many great things to do in Albuquerque. During the Sigma Tau Delta convention, we’ll be on hand to chat with you and share some more ideas about things to do and places to go. Be sure to look us up and say “hi”!

See you in March!

Be sure to also check out our recommendations in What to Do in Albuquerque (Part 1) and What to Do in Albuquerque (Part 2).

What to Do in Albuquerque: Suggestions from UNM English Majors (Part 2)

Students of
University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM

Sandia Peak Tramway

Sandia Peak Tramway

Greetings, Sigma Tau Delta members! As Professional Writing students at the University of New Mexico (UNM) in Albuquerque, we’re looking forward to your visit to our city for the 2015 Sigma Tau Delta Convention.

“One of the most prominent features in the Duke City, the Sandia Mountains, dominate the eastern edge of Albuquerque with a towering majesty. Boasting an elevation of 10,678 feet at its crest, you’d expect that much. But the best attraction of the Sandias—beyond, perhaps, the natural beauty of the landscape or the rugged features of the terrain—is the Tram. Opened in 1966, the Sandia Peak Tramway is a dramatic way to ascend the soaring slopes of the Sandias. As you climb 4,000 feet in the Tram, a breathtaking 11,000-square-mile view of Albuquerque and the surrounding area unfolds. The 15-minute trip up leads to Sandia Peak, where day or night you’ll encounter dramatic, picturesque views of the entire city and beyond. There’s also a lot to do in the Sandias. Hiking trails attract adventure-seekers during the warmer months, while skiing at the Sandia Peak Ski Area is the main attraction during the winter. And if you’re hungry after the trip up and all of the subsequent excursions, High Finance Restaurant is the premier dining spot at the peak, offering a variety of food to accompany the spectacular views.” (Suggested by Mike Mulcahy)

Garduno's at Old Town“For a breakfast treat, I recommend Garduño’s at Old Town Restaurant & Cantina in Hotel Albuquerque (near Old Town). Everything on the menu is very typical of New Mexican cuisine; however, everyone who comes to Albuquerque should try the famous New Mexico Blue Corn Piñon Pancakes. They’re delicious and nutritious! And you can’t find them anywhere else but here.” (Suggested by Dulce Cervantes)

El Pinto“A cultural experience awaits you at El Pinto Restaurant, complete with Western performers, Native American art and jewelry, Southwestern food, and famous salsa. Come see the picturesque patio of this mansion-like restaurant and enjoy a margarita. The restaurant started in a small single-room building, and 19 years later, it now seats 1,200. You can sit in one of five patios, three indoor dining rooms, or the cantina to enjoy your meal. Who knows, you could even see a celebrity who may be in town! George Strait, Katy Perry, Mel Gibson, and various other celebrities have visited El Pinto. If you request in advance, you can even take a tour of their 5,000 square foot chile roasting manufacturing facility. Green chile is the heart of the New Mexican culture. El Pinto uses 120 tons of chiles a year and typically have roasting demonstrations in the front of the building next to the gorgeous walkway. Listen to live music while sitting on the patio and smell the teasing scents arising from the kitchen. During the cooler months, enjoy the cozy warmth of the fireplace in the enclosed patio. Be sure to taste the authentic New Mexican flavors of the internationally famous El Pinto Salsa. Your taste buds will dance and sing with the exquisite experience that is El Pinto.” (Suggested by Enoch Platero)

Be sure to also check out our recommendations in What to Do in Albuquerque (Part 1).