Thursday, September 24, 2009

Editors Down Under?

I'm a nearly brand new graduate planning to take a publishing course next year. I'm very excited about this, and have been idly day-dreaming future plans (and not-so-idly thinking of a way to get my relations to stop asking me what I want to be when I grow up.) The trick is, I'm from New Zealand. I'm happy where I am right now, but I'd like to travel eventually. My question is, what kind of experience would I need in publishing in New Zealand in order to get a job somewhere like, oh, let's just choose a city at random, New York? I hope to work in YA on the editorial side (but who knows what I will enjoy) and ideally would leave the country with three or four years' experience, always providing I hustle my way into a job soon enough. I know I'd need to be caught up on what's popular and so forth - books from the USA tend to get here anyway - but would there be any particular barriers to shifting locations dramatically like this?
Because there's so much crossover between publishing in the US and Australia/New Zealand these days, I wouldn't expect it to be a problem. As long as you get 3-4 years of editorial experience and are well-read in the US market, then you should stand as good a chance as anyone. Of course, "as good a chance" is not as good as it was a couple years ago. Lots of good people are on the streets since December, so competition for editorial jobs is steep.


booksandbiscuits said...

Would the same stand for someone who wanted to come to the US from the UK?

I am about to start an MA Publishing in London, have a very good degree and relevant publishing work experience, and would love to work in NY/Boston afterwards - just for a couple of years, I see myself back here ultimately - to get some international experience. I would be interested in editorial or literary agencies, but I was told by a careers advisor that I had no chance unless I'd discovered the next J.K Rowling because the US is quite a closed market - I'm not sure I agree with him, so it would be interesting to hear more opinions. Also, what about visas?!

booksandbiscuits said...

Would the same apply for someone wanting to come to the US from the UK?

I've graduated with a very good degree, have done several relevant work placements and am about to start an MA Publishing in London. I'd love to get a couple years of experience abroad after this, in NY/Boston, before returning to the UK. I know competition will be fierce, and I don't know what the visa issues are, but would trying to get an entry-level/only-just-above-entry-level job from overseas be completely impossible?