The HarperCollins Site Visit

HC headquarers

On Wednesday, November 11th Pace students visited the HarperCollins Headquarters in New York. The students were greeted by Human Resources Director, Carolyn Zimatore and led to a conference room. At every seat there were HarperCollins water bottles and a book waiting for every student. After an overview of the different publishing departments and how they collaborate Zimatore passed the presentation onto Sara Sargent, the executive editor for HarperCollins Children.

Sargent answered student’s questions and spoke about the trends in children’s books. Next up was Brian Perrin, Marketing and Digital Product Development. Perrin spoke about working in book marketing and working with an editor to position a book. They both discussed the duties of an entry-level position in marketing and editorial and what you can expect. The last speaker was Brianne Fong, an Assistant Manager, Digital Rights. Fong’s team negotiates eBook rights for backlist titles at HarperCollins. She spoke in detail about the work behind acquiring rights and how digital rights create a new audience for backlist titles.

Students gained valuable information from these amazing speakers and were able to see a major publishing house in person. Thank you HarperCollins for the wonderful experience.

Students waiting for the presentations to start
The HarperCollins Lobby!
Books! Books! Books!
This is what you see when you get off the elevator. Books!


5 thoughts on “The HarperCollins Site Visit”

  1. This sounds like a great event that I wish I could have had the opportunity to attend. I am wondering if the students received a tour of the building, and if so, what the actual set-up was like compared to what they had imagined in their heads. I am also curious to know what books they chose to give each student and why that choice was made? Was there any opportunity to network with employees, and was information distributed about available internship or job opportunities?

    Lastly, I am curious about the speakers that attended. Was there a specific reason why children’s, digital rights and marketing were chosen topics?

  2. Speakers at the HarperCollins Site Visit were amazing publishing professionals. I learned more about the big publishers’ business vision and their strategies. After listening to them, I realized that big publishers like HarperCollins have yet to come with bold strategies to address the hot publishing issues: diversity, immigrant, and multiculturalism. Small publishers like Restless Books have made their strategic plans of focusing on immigrant issue; Amazon has allocated millions of dollars to translate the best books from other cultures and languages while big publishers like HarperCollins seem apathetic to address these issues.

  3. Hi Tayla,

    The students unfortunately did not receive a tour of the building. The books that were given were all random selections. Along with the book, students received a flyer about their internship opportunities. Some students took advantage of the opportunity to network with some of the employees. Pace did not select the speakers, the Human Resources professionals chose who was speaking to the students.

  4. It indeed was an valuable experience! I am glad about the choice of speakers, because fortunately I am interested in the field of YA and ebook market! You get an inside/deeper look at what exactly are editor/marketer/digital right people doing. For example, Ms. Fong shared her experience dealing with contract, having to figure out if the older contract include ebook rights or not, and dealing with agents or estate holders. It definitely helps me understand and imagine the job a lot! And I’m very excited to hear Ms. Sargent said that they expect fantasy/sci-fi rising in the future, that is exactly my favorite genre!

  5. I didn’t expect Harper Collins’ lobby to look like a bookstore! It’s interesting to see how publishers and agents decorate and remodel their spaces. Harper Collins has a lot of imprints I’m interested in for career choices, mostly their imprint Bourbon Street Books because of its focus on mysteries and thrillers. Harper’s Teen/YA selection is also impressive and I’m hoping to see more diverse science-fiction and fantasy books in the future from Harper Collins and other publishers after the big wave of dystopian fiction.

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