I was going for a much more original name for this post but then I decided it was awesome enough without the need of a sparkling title xD
The word ‘internship’ is frown upon. I know, I have been there.
Like millions of people, I had to endure the cliché of being used as a slave to someone too stingy to hire people or faced the long hours of doing nothing and therefore, learning nothing.
So why a post about my experience as an intern in publishing?
First of all, selfishly, I want to keep track of what happens and how it affects me. After a year sitting in class listening to all the theory of my dream job, I can finally experience and compare what has been said and what I actually do. I don’t want to forget the victories and the differences.
Then, I thought ‘Hey, Chocolate’n’Waffles is a book blog, and you are working for a publisher! Your ramblings might interest someone!!!’ I am not going to reveal all the deeds and details of what happens behind the scenes but I thought a nice weekly wrap-up could be a fun way to share what turns out to be the best job ever and a very interesting time abroad! Also, nice pictures of London and ramblings about my time in the city can’t hurt…!
London, you hugged me back seven days ago. Friday 8th June 2018. Since then, it’s been a roller-coaster!
A bit tired because of the 5a.m. alarm clock sound who … did not much as I wasn’t sleeping when it rang, I had a nice day relaxing and taking in the fact I was back in the city which had made me live the dream.
The problem with packing for six weeks is that you take all you think you might need and end up with 21 kilos! I can’t thank enough the nice gentlemen who helped me all the way. Let’s be honest, it wouldn’t have happened in Paris!!!
I had the chance to fangirl the very day I arrived because I got to meet Antti Tuomainen, or one of the funniest guy I have ever met. And sweet with it! I think I might still be fangirling! But the thing … I am supposed to stay professional, haha!
Day two: one of the best encounters of the year! I was putting my makeup on when Lilja Sigurdardottir walked out of her room and we finally met! In addition to being talented and beautiful, Lilja is one of the most inspiring and lovely women I have met. Our time together was short but boy was it good! (and she saved my life!) Again super professionnal! But that’s why I like it so much here. I can be all business when needed, but those authors were just… people! And meeting them was brilliant and I have no idea how to convey the fact it is a privilege to get to know them personally!
I was lucky enough to also be reunited with the French Queen of Noir, Johana Gustawsson! Frenchies in the place! It was fantastic to be able to accompany those brilliant and different personalities to the Balham Literary Festival and see Mama Orenda moderate her authors in the best way possible so that the floor could connect with the guests. Jokes were made, shocking mushroom revelations to (see The Man Who Died!) and weird Icelandic food was eaten!
All in all, my first official literary event and my first job as an intern was brilliant.
I have some pictures to let you see how it went! It was a PURE DELIGHT! Unfortunately, WordPress won’t let me put the videos in the post… FRUSTRATION! Just know that everyone laughed, and the place was full!
Of course, all is not well in the world and we all get stones in the shoes! Having prepared a medical prescription for my anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medication, I was quite happy to visit a pharmacy for the first time in the UK. Well. To sum it up, it was denied, I got angry, I tried again, I was denied, I ugly cried in the street, I panicked, I tried again, more tears came. THEN I WON. Never ever again will you hear me complain about the French medical system. What is wrong with those pharmacists??? Would say they to someone with diabetes ‘Sorry, I’m not allowed to give you the medication you obviously need as you are ruining my tissues, please stop sniffing, because even if the prescription is legit we have a right to refuse it as it is French.’??? Mental illnesses are like all other diseases and I wish I had been taken more seriously (and not sent to an NHS clinic at 7pm by Boots when they KNEW there was no doctor, only nurses, so I wouldn’t get my meds!)
This little … bump in the road didn’t hamper my work too much. I am lucky to have a wonderful and understanding boss who has been an amazing support.
Back to work! Can reading final proofs be considered working? :p Seriously? I love every minute of this exercise. For my very first reading job, I read Do No Harm (printing as we speak!) and it just blew my mind. I managed to get immersed in the story despite also focusing on typos, little mistakes or whatever (I love this part! And it warmed my heart to be trusted with it as English is not my native language and I feel like an imposter at times!) Research, paperwork, social media… Give it all to me and I’m a happy fairy!
Said fairy also got the chance to attend the private launch of Martyn Waites’s book The Old Religion, where introductions were made and I got to meet my fourth Orenda Books author, the lovely Susi Holliday (The Lingering is coming!). We got CAKE and I got the first edition of the book… and failed to have it signed! Silly me!
Everything is happening so fast I am not even sure I know that I am in London. I take the train, the bus (get lost), the tube, I search for a Waitrose, I get pizza, I failed at pronouncing stuff, then get complimented for my accent (highlight of the day!) and it feels like I’ve always been here.
Oh and… FOOD!
Last but not least … Harrogate! One conversation and it was on! I have my boss to thank again for helping me making another dream come true.
Can you run out of dream to fulfil???
I am having the weekend off which means I’ll suit up as the perfect tourist, then write reviews, and watch Buffy! I have decided to avoid reading too much because my poor eyes are not liking all the activies!!! Plus, I need to keep that American accent while surrounded by true English ones!