Canterbury University Press (CUP) is enjoying an extra set of eagle eyes on the team as it hosts its first publishing intern.
North Islander Frith Hughes was one of 15 students to complete Whitireia New Zealand's applied Diploma in Publishing last year in Wellington and one of just three students chosen for a six-month paid internship at a New Zealand publisher in 2011.
The internships are offered by the PANZ in association with Whitireia and funded by Creative New Zealand. Frith, who began at University of Canterbury in early February, said she felt honoured to be chosen to undertake an internship at CUP and is enjoying the variety of tasks she is getting to tackle.
"One day I might be proof-reading or checking corrections, and the next I might be laying out a whole chapter of a book, putting together an index or writing a blurb. There's always plenty to be done, and it's really great to feel so involved in the production process.
"Working in such a small team (there are three of us who work full-time at CUP) I've had the opportunity to experience things that interns in larger, more commercial publishing companies may not: meetings with authors and illustrators, for instance, or giving my opinion on a book cover design. I feel as though my efforts at CUP are actually making a difference. I'm not just taking photocopies or making cups of coffee for the boss!"
Frith said her “boss", CUP Publisher Rachel Scott, has been "invaluable as a mentor".
"I'm learning new things every single day, even though we're currently each working from our respective living rooms!"
Frith said she has wanted to work in publishing for as long as she can remember.
"I've always been a booklover; I've always been a pedant. It's the only career I've ever even considered, to be honest. I just love words."
Prior to undertaking the publishing diploma Frith completed a Bachelor of Communication Studies at the University of Waikato, with a double major in Linguistics and Media Studies. In 2008 she received a Ministry of Education scholarship to study linguistics at the University of Victoria in British Columbia, Canada.
CUP Publisher Rachel Scott said it was fantastic to have Frith on the team. "She is keen, sharp and very able. I can hand things over to her and know she’ll do a great job. I wasn’t sure whether she would come back after the February 22 earthquake, but she decided to tough it out! Working from home is not ideal for an intern, but Skype is great and we’re working it out."