Three Months In Publishing

I have always loved books, and I’ve always been curious about how they are made. When I started my DPS year I was pretty sure that I wanted to intern at a publishing company. I started with applying to Penguin followed by Roald Dahl’s publishing company. Didn’t work out with either of them, until I got an interview with Claire Rochford from Hardie Grant publishing.  

Finally, I would get to learn more about publishing. The office was like I imagined it would be. Full of books, and huge stacks of mockups everywhere.  The office was divided into the design team, the editorial team, the production team, the finance team and lastly the marketing team. My job was associated more with the marketing team. I produced assets for a book after it was designed and published. Little did I know about the work that goes on in creating and marketing a book.  

My role involved everything from making dummies from the London Book Fair to designing presentations sometimes even 200 pages long! Here are a few of the things I learned about publishing at Hardie Grant; 


1) Print is not dead. It is still a thriving industry with millions of people still reading books every day. Felt good to know that. 

2) The process of making a book is at least a year long, right from its first drafts to when it finally ends up on the shelves. 


3) Editors control the copy of the book. Designers control the layout and commission freelancers depending upon the design requirements of the book.  

4) Photoshoots are one of the most time-consuming aspects of some books. A lot of planning and coordination is required in setting up a shoot, arranging the models and the props. Food shoots are especially tricky because everything is perishable. 

5) Printing books in China is much much cheaper than printing books anywhere else in the world. 


6) Learnt how to set up a print ready file before it goes to a publisher. Particularly the difference between spot and process colors.  

7) Publishing is a slow meticulously planned industry. There is seldom any room for last minute decisions. Pretty much the opposite of branding.  

Memories I will take along: 

  • Eating cake, so much cake. I began to love team meeting because there were always treats. 

  • Working in London Bridge and having millions of choices to go and eat. 

  • All the lovely lunches and meals with the design team. Got introduced to some great places to eat. 

  • Hand modeling for a book.  

  • Laying out my first book- The Little Book of Sex. 

  • Eating potato waffles during the shoot of Posh Potatoes, a book focusing on recipes with potato as the main ingredient. The lovely farewell I got on my last day.