Intern Spotlight: Brooke Caine

Salutations, fellow lovers of language! My name is Brooke Caine, and I am a senior who will be joining the UNG Press as an intern this summer. Until my junior year of high school, I did not ever see myself in an institution of higher learning, as none of my family members have ever obtained a degree, and my grades were modest at best. However, thanks to the urgings of my mother and some well-selected Advanced Placement courses during my junior and senior year, I am proud to say that I graduated from North Forsyth High School in 2011 with a GPA of 3.2 and a letter of admission to UNG for the following fall semester.

My decision to pursue writing and publication as a major was born largely from the fact that I have been almost unnaturally obsessed with literature since before I could even read or speak properly. One of my mother’s favorite stories: At fifteen months old, I would regularly pull down every book from a shelf that was even larger than myself and babble nonsense in an attempt at ‘reading’. Imagine a small and rather chubby child sitting on a mountain of discarded but nevertheless beloved books with an enormous smile on her face—that is me, albeit slightly larger now and fairly literate by this point.

In addition to my passion for the written word, I am also a lover of languages. During my time at UNG, I have studied Chinese and Russian (the first briefly and the second as a minor) both in the classroom and with native speakers who were generous enough to invite me into their culture and share with me their language, food, and friendship. Naturally, I am always delighted to see works by authors whose countries and customs are different from my own. My favorite English course by far was Immigrant Literature as it gave me an intimate perspective on the struggles and joys of those who come to this country as dreamers and the memories of the lands and people that they left behind.

Ever since I was a child, I have been a firm believer that every story deserves to be told as there is always someone who needs to hear it. To that end, my goal is to work in a publishing company that focuses specifically on the voices that have heretofore been pushed aside or even erased in the flow of history. During the course of my internship, I would like to learn the basics of the industry—proofreading, editing, marketing, design, production—in a work environment that promotes a global and open-minded perspective, both in business practices and the works that we produce for our student body and community.

 

As I Say Goodbye

As the year comes to a close along with my journey with the UNG Press, I can’t help but reminisce and get nostalgic about when I first started. Yeah, it may have just been fall of last year that I began this journey, but I can still feel nostalgic and sappy. I just have a lot of feelings. Let’s reminisce together, shall we?

I remember walking up the stairs on my first day, wiping sweaty palms on my jeans for the umpteenth time. To say I was nervous is an understatement. I held my breath as I knocked open the door as entered the room where I would be working for the next few months. All my nerves, however, disappeared within the first few minutes of entering the room, thank to Ms. Jillian Murphy. She immediately made me feel welcomed and established a welcoming aura. She encouraged me to always ask questions about anything I didn’t understand and would help me with any issues I encountered. She definitely made the working environment a stress-free space. It motivated me to do my best on each assignment and not be afraid to ask questions or for help whenever needed.

The assignments I was assigned throughout my journey were challenging, but they were also very rewarding. Every assignment taught me a different process of getting a post approved and published so the public could see it. The experience I have gained from my time at the UNG Press has increased my (at-the-time very little) knowledge on the different processes that have to applied to every post. It has made me appreciate the Press’ hard work even more.

As my final days approach (with the Press, that is), I can only say this to all my co-workers and bosses: Thank you. You’ve made my work experience memorable and have helped me grow and mature. I am sad because this is a time of goodbyes, but I am also happy to see the UNG Press grow and flourish with new workers. I know great things are to come with this Press, and I can’t wait to watch and read them.

A Reflection on My Time at the Press

I’ve always wanted to have a career with an English studies focus. Well, other than when I was four-years-old and told anyone who would listen that I wanted to be a ladybug when I grew up. Dreams change from four to twenty-two, that’s for sure. I’ve grown up and I’m looking for ways to have a successful career in the publishing industry. The UNG Press helped me start my journey.

In June of 2016, I came to UNG for a transfer student orientation, where I walked around campus and talked to a faculty advisor from the English department about my career goals. That was the first time I heard about the UNG Press. I’d only received a little information, but I knew I wanted to be a Press intern before I graduated. I would gain valuable insight and experience. I’d get to be in an actual publishing house around other editors. So when I applied for and received the internship position, I achieved a personal goal I’d been thinking about since 2016.

My internship with the Press has been everything I hoped it would be and more. Initially, I was so focused on being a copy editor that I dismissed other industry opportunities that were right in front of me. Working at the Press showed me those opportunities.

My internship focused on creating content for the Press’ social media platforms. I conducted extensive research about publishing and marketing and used the research to create entertaining and professional blog posts. These assignments taught me the importance of writing for a specific audience and writing concisely and comprehensively. Immersing myself in these new parts of the industry and seeing the hard work that is essential to the success of the Press has provided me with the knowledge, experience, and appreciation that I will need when I begin my career.

My internship has shaped me into a better writer and a more compassionate and experienced soon-to-be college graduate. As I’m looking for jobs that allow me to expand on the knowledge and tools I’ve gained this semester, I’ll be thanking everyone at the Press every step of the way.

I am one step closer to having the career that I want because of my experience at the Press.

Thanks For the Memories!

During my time at UNG Press, I have been able to explore the world outside the classroom. Working here has given me the ability to become a developed marketer and figure out what I want my future to look like. This opportunity has given me the chance to learn more about the Press industry, hone my skills, and work in a busy office full of kind people.

This office let me have many experiences that I was not be able to have in the classroom. Here, I was able to use my skills that I have acquired throughout the years. Whether that be through creating a birthday post or developing a proposal for future projects, I was given the opportunity to be creative and diversify my portfolio. This has helped me to understand the process of developing an idea, refining it, and executing it.

UNG Press has really opened my eyes to the publishing industry. I have poured over articles about different kinds of editing, the process of publishing a book, and what the future of the publishing industry may look like. I never really put a lot of thought into what it takes to publish a book. All I knew was that I could go down to my local bookstore and purchase the title I was looking for. This position has really given me a newfound appreciation for the behind the scenes work that goes into getting a book onto the shelves.

The Press office has been a wonderful learning environment. Every time that I struggled with an assignment, I knew that this staff was available to help me complete any tasks given to me. My supervisor, Jillian, was especially helpful throughout my time here. I want to thank her for all the time that she put into helping me create and edit my work to make it better.

Working here for two semesters has been a wonderful experience. I have learned a lot about myself and the publishing industry. This position has opened my eyes to the possibilities for my future and for what it may have in store. Everyone that goes into this position should know that this office is a good one. Thank you for making my last year at UNG a fun and creative one.

The Creativity of the Crowd

The Crowdsourced Poetry Project is under way! We have three lines so far and are excited to see more contributions to our sestina. Go to our Facebook page to submit your contribution for the next line. Our poem so far:

I began to ask myself the questions
With answers hanging in the air
What is here is noise, above which we can hear

For those of you who don’t already know, the Press is doing an experiment in creativity where we are hoping to harness the wisdom and imagination of the public to create a stunning poem. We have chosen to use the sestina for our form, mostly because it requires no rhyming or syllable counting, making it more accessible to contributors, while its use of repeated end-words gives it just enough complexity and structure so that it won’t spin off into a wild dervish. A sestina is a poem of six stanzas that are each six lines long and then a final, three line envoi. The stanzas all end with the same six words as the first stanza, though in a very specific order. In “Sestina: Altaforte” Ezra Pound uses these words at the ends of the first six lines: peace, music, clash, opposing, crimson, and rejoicing. According to the form they reappear in the second stanza in a new order as: rejoicing, peace, crimson, music, opposing, and clash, and so on throughout the next four stanzas. The repetition of these words both allows and forces the writer to use them in new ways and with new meaning imbued each time, creating a rich tapestry of language where the pattern continues to reveal itself throughout. Please join us in our quest to crowdsource a poem; the results are sure to be interesting and possibly very beautiful indeed.

Papers & Pubs Available for Purchase

A little over a month after the electronic launch of Papers and Publications: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Undergraduate Research, we are happy to announce the release of the hard copy version. You can now purchase a copy through our partner, Booklogix, by visiting this page: http://shop.booklogix.com/Papers-Publications-Vol-1-Issue-1-4153.htm. Copies are only $8.00, so show your support of Undergraduate Research and purchase one today! You can see what you’re getting before you purchase your copy. All of the articles are available to download for free from the official Papers and Pubs website.

During the 2011-2012 academic year, submissions from undergraduate students throughout the southeastern region were read and selected through a rigorous peer review process directed by the journal’s editors: Dr. Miriam Segura-Totten, Editor in Chief; Dr. Tanya Bennett, Humanities Editor; and Dr. Robb Sinn, STEM Editor.

The research topics of the finally-selected articles include eco-criticism, international economics, the Holocaust, African-American literature, sponge habitat, and elementary education. Their authors are undergraduates from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, Davidson College, Hollins University, North Georgia College & State University, and Sewannee: The University of the South.

The mission of the journal is to promote student learning by disseminating undergraduate research and creative works that make an intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline or to applied practice. As Dr. Patricia L. Donat, NGCSU’s Vice President for Academic Affairs, writes in the first issue’s introductory Letter, “Papers and Pubs showcases some of the exceptional work of students who have conducted research as part of their undergraduate experience and who have benefitted from the mentorship and support of a dedicated group of advisors.”

The Keyhole by Tiffany McGrath

The premier issue’s cover image showcases original artwork, entitled The Keyhole, by NGCSU Visual Arts student Tiffany McGrath. This image represents one of the journal’s main goals: to open doors and offer students life-changing opportunities. As Miriam Segura-Totten writes in her Letter from the Editor, “research experiences can help undergraduates learn more about themselves, discover how they can contribute to society, and get initiated in what could become their future career.”

Papers and Pubs will begin accepting submissions for its second issue in early Fall 2012. Students in the southeastern region and their faculty mentors may submit original work that has been presented at a conference, showcase, or capstone course either on their own campus or at a regional/national conference site. Original research papers are welcome from all departments and disciplines, including fiction, creative non-fiction, and poetry (providing the creative work has been presented at a conference or in a class). Also welcome are original juried art works. All submissions will be reviewed by a faculty reviewer.

Submission guidelines and additional information about the journal and its scope can be found at:
http://digitalcommons.northgeorgia.edu/papersandpubs/

Inquiries may be addressed to upng@northgeorgia.edu.

Committed as a Teaching Press: Writing Reader’s and Editor’s Reports

The University Press of North Georgia is proud to be a teaching press and is committed to providing NGCSU college students with real-life instructions and internship experience in a variety of different arenas of publishing.  One of the ways this is accomplished is through the “Intro to Publishing” class offered by the English Department and taught by Dr. Bonnie Robinson, UPNG Director.

As an English major, I took the “Intro to Publishing” class in the Spring of 2011. I greatly enjoyed the class and ultimately decided to seek to intern with UPNG because of it. I know several other English majors that also still use the skills they learned in the class on a daily basis.

Each week over the next semester, I will be collaborating with one of the students in Dr. Robinson’s current “Intro to Publishing” class to share what we have learned throughout our respective courses, in hopes that you might also learn something about what occurs before you have a new book in your hands. This week, Cara Cunningham joins me to discuss what her class just finished discussing: Reader’s Reports and Editor’s Reports.

Cara writes,

“One day, I would like to work in a publishing house. This semester I am working towards that difficult-to-achieve goal by being in “Introduction to Publishing.” This week in this course, I am learning how to write a Reader’s Report and an Editor’s Report. A Reader’s Report is written when an editor desires help with reading and evaluating manuscripts which are sent to his publishing house. An assistant will read a manuscript and will write a Reader’s Report of typically a few paragraphs in length which summarizes and evaluates the manuscript. It will conclude with a recommendation of whether or not to publish the manuscript. An Editor’s Report is written by an editorial assistant about a manuscript that has already been approved for publication. This report is often directed to the author of the manuscript but may also be directed to the head editor depending on what is asked of the editorial assistant. The Editor’s Report is like the Reader’s Report in that it briefly evaluates the work, but it focuses only on what needs to be improved in the manuscript in its overall structure, i.e. if the subject needs additional or fewer details. The writer of an Editor’s Report needs to also provide sound logic to support the change.”

My own personal experiences learning about Reader’s Reports has allowed me to think more critically about my creative writing. I want to one day be a children’s author. Sometimes after writing a new children’s story, I will try to step back and write an imaginary Reader’s Report and Editorial Report for the work, asking myself these questions: If I were looking at this manuscript for the first time, what would make me think that it was worth publishing? Would anything hinder me from wanting to publish it? What could be changed? What absolutely has to stay no matter the revision? Where should details be added or removed? What is the logical and literary (not the emotional, I-like-this-because-it’s-my-own-work) reason that the publishing house I wish to submit to would spend time, effort, and money publishing my work?

Looking at Readers and Editorial Reports in this manner has helped me revise several manuscripts. What work do you currently have in-progress and how could asking these questions of your manuscripts benefit both you as a writer and your work?