howdoienglish











{June 14, 2011}   Acquisitions

In my job as a marketing assistant with a micropress, I’ve done a lot of interesting things. Some of them I would classify as “intern” tasks, stuff that you would assign to the new kid because you’re too busy to address envelopes or put chatter teeth into bags.

Today I was the acquisitions editor. Our press opened up submissions to anyone with a book for children, and we have received a good number so far. We haven’t responded to many, however, and my task was to fix that.

The strange thing about being an acquisitions editor for a day was the godlike power vested in me. Though I discussed several submissions with the president of the press, she told me to look through the rest of them and decide if any were the type of writing we wanted to include in the titles published by this press.

I, a twenty-something fresh out of college, decided the fates of people who have been writing longer than I’ve been alive, in some cases. It was with a conflicted conscience that I sent e-mails from an anonymous press e-mail rejecting some people’s manuscripts and asking for full manuscripts from other people. I could be a factor in whether or not some of these people get published.

I may be overestimating my effect when it’s all said and done. But I have gained an appreciation for people who hold this job, for people who decide the fate of a manuscript (and possibly an author).

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