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us to create and develop interactive content for our two websites Carcanet and PN Review, and to generally facilitate the delivery of poetry to an online readership. So, as well as helping Carcanet to keep pace with exciting developments in digital publishing, the research project would also provide the trainee with valuable experience and training this radically evolving area in publishing. Eileen Pun: I was able to develop technical skills in web content management, liaise with the web designer Webguild and develop Carcanet’s interactive audio library Listen Here! The open and flexible workplace meant we were able to make immediate use of valuable archived material, as well as create exciting new content through interviews and podcasts! Eleanor Crawforth: Our purpose was to equip somebody with the skills and experience necessary for them to get a job in the publishing industry upon completion of the traineeship. Eileen Pun: So, what can I say about my overall experience... - I enjoy it! From the free books to long hours to book launches and painstaking double-checking! - I have gained confidence to pursue a career in publishing. - I am able to clearly identify areas of publishing that suit my skills and talents. - I have gained inside knowledge and training about how the industry works. - I can demonstrate evidence of projects that I have undertaken. - I’ve had an opportunity to network and meet people within the industry. In terms of a working experience,

I can truly say that working for Carcanet has been distinctive. Stephen Procter: One of the other distinctive things about working for Carcanet is that it is based in Manchester, the majority of publishing in the UK is based in London or Oxford. Eileen Pun: Through the traineeship I have been able to take part in the vibrant Manchester literature community, where I have met many enthusiastic, like-minded people, who are all committed to literature and widening access to the arts. Michael Schmidt: Well, we learn a great deal from the trainee, apart from the fact that we hope the trainee learns a lot from us. As you know from your own experience, you were able to develop areas of our website and other activities which we simply haven’t the time, and in one or two cases, the experience and the knowledge to do. So we are possibly the trainees almost as much as you in some respects. That is a benefit. We enjoy and learn from the activity of creating a job as well as managing an internship of this kind. We try to make it as fruitful for the candidate as possible. And of course, develop new friendships, something you might not do otherwise.

A few final key points... 1. Many of the skills required to work in publishing can be learned. In fact, there are many reputable training sources available from short term courses right to masters level. 2. The world of publishing is quickly evolving, therefore new job roles will require skills in web and digital formats. 3. The people who make a career in publishing have a real sense of pride about their work and are not in publishing to make a fortune. Michael Schmidt was an excellent

Carcanet Press Ltd, Alliance House, 30 Cross Street, Manchester M2 7AQ, United Kingdom

role model and inspiring example of how to successfully bring together one’s creative and professional passions. Michael Schmidt: If you’re a poetry publisher, you don’t make a living at it. Publishing has always been what I do for pleasure, vocation. It is not something that I’ve done in order to survive, but something that I’ve survived in order to do. I love publishing, especially the combination of book publishing and magazine publishing. I wouldn’t be without it. It is part of my creative existence... but I got into it by chance and I’ve stayed in it by luck. Eileen Pun: Every person’s publishing story is different... And my experience in helping Carcanet produce delightful books of poetry, has been a most rewarding opportunity to be a little spider in a big web. Please note: The transcript has been summarised. The individual views expressed in this podcast are not official statements made by Carcanet Press. The Decibel initiative, supported by the Arts Council was a short term initiative, please note the Positive Action Publishing Traineeship is not an ongoing programme. If you are interested in work experience at Carcanet, e-mail December 2009 Produced by: Eileen Pun Music by: Guitarist:

Related websites Listen Here!

PN Review Arts Council England The Bookseller DIPNET The Publishing Training Centre Society of Young Publishers (SYP) Manchester University Press phone: +44(0)161 832 0084


Carcanet podcast: Want to go somewhere in publishing?  
Carcanet podcast: Want to go somewhere in publishing?  

Want to go somewhere in publishing? Eileen Pun and Carcanet staff discuss her Carcanet traineeship and offer advice for those interested in...