Industry Q & A: Erin Hagget, Assistant Editor in Publishing

Name: Erin Hagget
Company: Scholastic Canada Ltd.
Position: Assistant Editor in Publishing
Genre: Early Reader to Young Adult
Astrological Sign: Curious minds need to know

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Reading! Yay!

Scholastic is one of those publishing companies that most Canadians grow up with; children flip through book orders looking for what may become their new favourite book and then grow up with fond memories of Clifford and The Magic School Bus. Any author would dream of having their books make their way into schools.

Erin is one of my closest friends from the Book and Magazine Publishing certificate program at Centennial College; since then, we’ve worked together on the online pet magazine Petpourri.ca and meet up once in a while to attend industry events, such as book launches and Book Camp TO.

Team Tweak TO connected with Erin Haggett, assistant editor in publishing at Scholastic Canada Ltd., to ask for her insight into finding jobs in the publishing industry.

Q: What is your relationship with the book you work on and the writer of that book? We’d love a brief description of what you do and how it pertains to the author.
A: I’m an assistant editor, so I tend to work on a variety of projects. I usually work on books in the later stage of the publishing process, particularly the proofreading, ebook development, and reprints stages. Because I come in so late in the process, I rarely have any direct contact with authors.

Q: How can an author help in this process?
A: I can’t speak to specifics because authors aren’t usually directly involved in the type of work I’m currently doing, but being open, accessible, and enthusiastic is always great! As is meeting deadlines 🙂

Q: How did you end up in this field?
A: I graduated with a BA in Media, Information, and Technoculture from the University of Western Ontario before completing the Book and Magazine Publishing program through Centennial College.

Q: Do you have advice for others who want to get into your field?
A: Read everything you can, don’t be too intimidated by the tough job market, and talk to others in the field—nearly everyone you meet will be willing to give advice and/or assistance.

Q: What is your favourite aspect of your work?
A: I work in children’s publishing, so I love the variety of books I get to work on—they can be anything from picture books to YA novels. I also love that I have a part in encouraging kids to become lifelong readers!

Q: How do you start your day?/What do you like to drink while working?/What do you listen to while working?/Where do you do your best work?/What is your favourite colour?
A: I generally start my day by catching up on email, then jumping right in to my project(s). I’m not a coffee drinker, but I love tea, so I usually have a couple cups a day. I don’t usually listen to music or anything else while I work. I prefer a quiet environment, without a lot of distractions, particularly if I’m proofreading. I don’t have one favourite colour, but I tend to gravitate towards cool colours: purples, blues, and greens are my go-to palette.

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