One of my favorite parts about being a publicist in publishing is that no day is ever the same. Some days you will spend escorting your author to super chic events feeling like the Samantha Jones of the publishing world, while other days are spent in an elephant costume. The only consistent thing I do is work with incredible authors and impressive colleagues to make sure readers (like you!) have the opportunity to fall in love with our books as hard as I have (I basically live in a constant state of love struck/new relationship giddiness when it comes to our books). The log below details one of my more typical days (sorry, no elephant costumes in this post) and what it is like to be a book publicist.
6:45 AM My alarm goes off, and my day begins! I set it just a bit earlier than I need to, so I can take the local subway train to work instead of the express (more reading time underground!). I especially love reading advance copies of our titles on the train, and secretly hope someone will ask “what are you reading?” so I can gush about the book before it is available in stores.
I love it even more when people ask me “what are you reading?” on my commute home, instead of my commute into work, because I have not had coffee yet and will definitely need it in order to form proper sentences.
7:30 AM As a publicist, I’m obsessed with planning ahead, so I’m typically not scrambling to get ready in the morning. After double checking that I have my book, metro card, and lunch I’m out the door and on my way into the office.
8:00 AM While underground I (unsuccessfully) search Twitter for recaps and new theories about the latest Game of Thrones episode. After giving up (WiFi on the subway is a myth), I vow to search the Internet during lunch.
8:45 AM Finally at my desk, I cross “create today’s to do list” off of today’s to-do-list.
9:00 AM I check my email and look for articles and posts that feature Amulet titles! This is my favorite part of the job. I love seeing our books featured online or in print. I’ll email our authors links and clippings to the articles, and they will respond with totally on point GIFs, jokes, and excitement because they are they are the coolest people to work with.
10:30 AM Ask myself, “Is it too early for lunch?”
10:35 AM Decide it is definitely too early for lunch.
11:30 AM I spend some time fulfilling requests for review copies of our upcoming titles sent in by bloggers, print media, librarians and others (you’d be surprised). I will typically include the advance copy, a press release or letter from someone on the ABRAMS team explaining why we love this book so much (have I made it clear that at ABRAMS we love talking about why we love our books?) and my business card in case someone would like to get in touch after reading.
11:59 AM Head to our office kitchen to prepare what I brought for lunch since it is finally an appropriate time to eat.
12: 15 PM As I eat I like to review my calendar, where I keep track of my author’s upcoming events and appearances. Amulet authors are very busy people who love to meet their readers and they always have a ton of festival visits, conference appearances, and book store events, and it is my job to make sure everything runs smoothly! This requires a lot of planning and attention to detail. When an author is traveling, my cell phone is never more than arms distance away from me in case of unforeseen hiccups. Every author has a wild travel story . . . and therefore so does every publicist.
1:00 PM Lunch is over and I head into meetings to brainstorm marketing and publicity initiatives for our upcoming books. If you can believe it, we are already thinking about books coming out a year from now. This is also when I realize I never researched the latest on Game of Thrones.
3:00 PM My meetings are over and I head downstairs to our favorite coffee place, phone in hand, to grab something with caffeine in it, and finally search for some new Thrones gossip. When I open Twitter, I’m distracted by an interesting tweet from one of our YA authors, Riley Redgate. She participated in a Twitter chat about LBGTQ YA books. Suddenly I’m sucked into the hashtag, and my original reason for signing on to Twitter is forgotten. This happens often, our authors are awesome on social, and I don’t know who I followed before them!
3:45 PM After discussing Riley’s chat with my work BFF, who happens to be a member of our social media team, I head to another meeting to discuss upcoming festivals where our authors will be appearing. A lot of planning goes into festivals (where will the author stay? how will they get there? when and where will they sign books for their fans?) but it is totally worth it to see fans interacting in person with our authors. Being a publicist is all about making sure everybody gets a chance to read and love the same books I secretly hoped strangers would ask me about on the subway just a few months before.
5:00 PM As the day ends, I use the quiet time to do any writing on my to-do-list. This includes press materials, letters, and any promotional material we may be working on.
6:00 PM I leave the office to join my friend who works at another publishing house for a YA launch party for one of the authors she works with. One of the best parts about working in publishing is being friends with people who love books as much as you do. Even though I would have to take a very long vacation to put a small dent in my TBR list, doesn’t mean I have any plans to stop adding to it!
8:30 PM Finally home, I decide that I need to look up Game of Thrones on Twitter or I’ll never understand what happened in last week’s episode. Not long after I prepare for the next day, and get into bed with my phone on the loudest volume possible (I have an author with an early flight tomorrow morning) and read until I fall asleep.