Ringwood Publishing has used Interns for some time now and they have collectively made an enormous positive contribution to Ringwood’s ability to produce as many high quality books as it has been able to publish over the last 10 years.
The publishing world is very hard to break into. Bigger publishers can get several hundred applications for even basic grade entry posts. The hard reality is that publishers are able to only interview candidates who have already got considerable experience of at least some of the many key publishing tasks. We have seen many sad examples of young people with very good degrees and even post graduate qualifications who don’t get interviewed, far less selected, because of their lack of experience. But how can they get this necessary experience if no-one will give them a job?
It is to help young people interested in a career in publishing break this vicious circle that Ringwood offers opportunities to suitably motivated potential Interns.
Applicants undergo an extensive interview process that makes very clear and explicit the proposed nature of the arrangement between Ringwood and the Intern candidate.
It is made very clear to all candidates that what Ringwood is offering them is real, meaningful and responsible work experience over the full range of standard publishing tasks involved in producing a published book: from manuscript evaluation; editing of approved manuscripts as Assistant Editor to a more experienced editor; proof-reading of edited manuscripts; and copyediting including production of documents, through until the published version of the book is available. They are also given experience in the roles of promoting and marketing published books.
There is no dispute that in an ideal world Interns would get at least a Living wage for the work they do. However this is unfortunately not always an ideal world, and not only is a small publisher like Ringwood unable to afford any payment at all other than expenses incurred, but in the wider Scottish and UK publishing world it is very common for Interns to be used on an unpaid basis.
Most Interns agree to work flexibly between 6 and 20 hours a week depending on their circumstances and wishes; generally undergraduate Interns do 6-10 hours a week; post graduate Interns do 10-20 hours; all working flexibly from their home base.
It is explained to all Intern applicants that acquiring this depth and range of experience will greatly enhance their chances of being interviewed for paid publishing jobs with bigger publishers. Ringwood is able to make this claim because of the significant number of Interns who leave Ringwood to take up paid positions in bigger publishers. Most start at a basic entry level but a good number have been able, based on their extensive and responsible experiences with Ringwood, to obtain higher level posts. Many Ringwood Interns have gone on to have very successful careers in publishing, which they acknowledge they would have been very unlikely to without the door-opening experience gained with Ringwood as an Intern. Many more Interns have been able to use their Ringwood experience to gain permanent employment in related areas like public relations, journalism, libraries or a whole range of similar rewarding roles.
Interns, once appointed, are not bound to Ringwood in any contractual way and are free to leave at any time. It is our experience, backed by almost every Intern we have ever had, that being an Intern with Ringwood is both an enjoyable and a rewarding experience, and that Interns leave when their circumstances dictate, with a positive sense of achievement.
Ringwood cherishes every Intern and focuses on providing them with experience that will considerably enhance their prospects of employment in a fulfilling career. We provide every Intern with a positive reference that spells out the abilities and experience in the range of tasks encountered in their placement. We take considerable pride in the many Interns who go to lengthy careers in publishing. In turn many Interns stay in touch with Ringwood after their placement ends and some have continued to assist Ringwood in various ways as Volunteers.
If becoming an Intern with Ringwood is a prospect that has appeal, send an email with a CV to firstname.lastname@example.org.
NB Ringwood does not offer work-experience placements or very short-term Internships. We normally look for Interns to commit for anywhere between 3 and 9 months.