Applying for Internships

So if you read my last post about publishing, you’ll know that I’ve been stuck doing nothing for a while, unable to start applications or make progress towards entering the industry. However, those days are finally over and I am now officially sending off my CV and submitting applications to internships. Therefore, I thought I would post my top tips for applying for publishing internships.

1: Tailor you Cover Letter

This may seem like an obvious one but you shouldn’t underestimate the importance of not only tailoring your cover letter to publishing, but also ensuring that it is specifically written for the company you’re applying to. Make sure you research the publishing house, what their goal is and what kind of books they publish.

2: Keep Track of your Applications

You will be applying to so many different roles at different places that this is absolutely crucial. Personally, I have a spreadsheet listing which publishing houses or literary agencies I’ve applied, what the role or scheme was I applied for, key dates and salary information and I cannot overstate how helpful this has been. It has meant that I haven’t missed important application deadlines, I know approximately when I’ll hear back about different roles and that I can check the details of each scheme or job.

3: Know what your Skills are

You should be able to list at least five skills that you have that would be helpful for the internship your want. You will absolutely have built skills from a variety of different things and being confident in these is so important. It’s fine if you don’t think you have best IT skills but you may have impressive commercial awareness or ability to problem solve.

4: Don’t Underestimate the Value of your Experiences

When considering the experiences you have make sure you don’t dismiss the ones that you don’t think are relevant to the industry. Just because the you did work experience in a completely different industry doesn’t mean that you didn’t learn transferable skills. I have taken level 1 British Sign Language classes throughout my final year of university and whilst this may not seem especially relevant to publishing, it does show that I like to take on new challenges and gave me insight into the issues faced by the Deaf community whilst expanding my ability to communicate with people.

5: Don’t give up

You will get rejections and it will feel disheartening but this should not stop you. Most internships within the publishing industry are very competitive, making it a very hard industry to get into. However, this doesn’t mean it’s impossible, you just have to keep applying and taking on board any feedback you get. Periodically review your CV, look for every opportunity you can to build your experience and don’t give up. Eventually you will be successful.


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