Placement: Vagabond Voices

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After my very enjoyable stint at Scotland Street Press was over, I decided that I wanted to gain more experience in the publishing workplace. As a born and bred Glaswegian, I was extremely keen to see what my home town had to offer in the way of publishing houses, so it was logical that I looked to Vagabond Voices.

Established in 2008 by Allan Cameron, Vagabond Voices publishes ‘novels, poems and polemics penned at home or abroad.” With an excellent reputation of publishing translations, and with my background in French, this felt like the perfect fit.

I began my placement in January and it has been a joy ever since. Having before worked for a small publisher I was accustomed to the buzzy atmosphere and the variety of tasks that I’d be expected to perform but I learned more than I ever imagined.

Since I started there, I have only ever been encouraged and I have read many a submission and my feedback has been taken seriously, I have proofread and been given feedback and support on my work, and I have been given control of the social media channels, and given the freedom to create promotional images on Photoshop and InDesign which have been used.

Most surprisingly is the fact that Allan, the director has guided and encouraged me into undertaking more sales activities, something he feels I have an aptitude for. Sales was never a role I considered prior to this placement and I’m surprised at how much I love it. Creating relationships and rapport with buyers has been one of the most fun aspects of the role.

Overall, my time spent with Vagabond Voices has provided me with invaluable skills and knowledge and my confidence has increased tenfold. I will always be grateful to Allan and Dana for the time they invested in me.

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Placement: Scotland Street Press

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One of the most exciting aspects of this course for me was the placement opportunities that we would be given the chance to undertake. I couldn’t wait to get stuck in and use my skills in a real-life publishing house.

Fortunately, I didn’t have to wait long and was given a placement with Scotland Street Press in October. Scotland Street is a small, Edinburgh based publisher who publish literary fiction, memoir and travel books. There’s a wide variety; and with one of the books being a 2017 English PEN award for translation, there’s a lot going on. It was set up by Jean Findlay and she continues to work as head of publishing.  I was nervous about starting, as we had only recently begun the course and I had absolutely no publishing experience whatsoever. I was also concerned about how I would manage to juggle the placement with my studies, and my part-time job, especially considering how early on in the programme we were.

I need not have worried though, as on my first day I found myself settling in and adjusting to the ways in which the press is run. Continue reading “Placement: Scotland Street Press”