Friday, February 18, 2011

Daily Changes

Having a job in publishing is AWESOME. Approaching three months in I love it just as much as I did on my first day, and as I learn more and more, it becomes even more exciting.  There are some changes in my life that come with having a job in publishing- the expected sort of things that I’ve already mentioned: getting an apartment, waking up early, reading until your eyeballs fall out.  There have been some changes in the past three months that I hadn’t anticipated. These aren’t bad changes at all, but they’re interesting to reflect on.

Before: I’ve always been an girl when it comes to buying books, or if I wanted to take in the glorious smell of books, a chain bookstore girl.  This was a cost issue, mostly.  And the fact that the part of CT where I grew up never managed to support an independent bookstore, so my only options within a reasonable drive were Barnes and Noble or Borders.

Now: I’ve come to realize that independent bookstores are places that publishing houses rely on to hand sell our books. The booksellers that work at indies know our books, know their customers and know what would be a good match between novel and reader.  And independents rely on that community and host events- like the wonderful Books of Wonder which hosted the first stop on the Breathless Reads Tour* which I attended last week- that foster a love of reading. Books might be more expensive at indies, but you’re buying far more than a book- you’re supporting a community of book lovers.

(*Side note: if you can catch the Breathless Reads Tour, do so.  It’s a tour for five Penguin authors: Beth Revis (Across the Universe), Ally Condie (Matched), Andrea Cremer (Nightshade), Brenna Yovanoff (The Replacement), and Kirsten Miller (The Eternal Ones).  I was very pleased with the event/really want to read Nightshade (I’ve already read The Replacement)!)

Before: I was blissfully ignorant where my music came from.  I didn’t download any; I just relied on my sister and never questioned where it came from.  And when a friend-who-shall-remain-nameless told me she downloaded Mockingjay shortly after it came out, I was in awe that that was possible- I had no idea.

Now: I get emails regularly from authors wanting HC to take down illegal book download links. There was a blog post floating around a while ago by an author illustrating (whether truly or not) how illegal downloads have been detrimental to her writing career and financial well being. Although I never had illegally downloaded a book, I know I never will now- and I’m much more aware of where my music and movies come from. I want to support the artists behind the media I love!

Before: I was a dresses girl, especially in the summer. If I could wear a dress, I would.  I had overly strict ‘rules’ that I followed about what I could wear (sweatshirts in public? Only if I was sick/sleep deprived!), which often resulted in me being a little dressier than the others I was spending time with.

Now:  I’m still a dresses girl, but when you have eight work-appropriate dresses and have to wear them five days a week, you get pretty bored with your wardrobe.  And tights get pretty darn uncomfortable, too.  So on weekends, it’s jeans jeans jeans.  Maybe even a sweatshirt, or sneakers (but let’s not push it yet).

So there you have it…three ways in which having a job in publishing has changed my daily habits, just a little bit, but a change nonetheless. This weekend I think I might head out in comfy jeans to my local bookstore and buy a book or two!

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