Work Experience with Coco Watanabe

Hello I am Coco Watanabe.

I am a student currently undertaking work experience at black dog books for one week.

I first became acquainted with the existence of black dog books through Magpie magazine which my family subscribes to. I normally fight with the other members of my family over who gets to read it first  – but luck favoured me that day! I seemed to be the only one in the house when the postie drove up on his little orange auto machine.

A new release by black dog books was advertised on the back cover along with their contact details.  As I had been searching for an interesting place to do work experience, I decided to send them an email, which was replied to straight away. It was a very positive and encouraging reply!

Being from a rather bookish family – my grandfather was a writer, my Dad is now a freelance children’s book writer and mum is an illustrator – I thought work experience at black dog books would be a great opportunity to find out what kind of work really goes into the making of a book. I have learnt that there is an immense amount of work behind every single book that becomes published, whether it is a children’s or young adult book!

The team here is very hardworking and passionate. This week I have learnt that they are flexible and open to new ideas. They have given me quite a few educating experiences during my week here. So far I have read quite a number of unsolicited manuscripts, some of which are incredibly captivating, some of which are quite the contrary! I realised I enjoy doing this as I often don’t find the perfect balance between homework, social time and reading. Sadly homework seems to heavily outweigh both of the latter! As I have discovered it is also lovely to look at books that I wouldn’t normally cast an eye on – quite a number of new genres and authors have been brought to my attention through being here. I believe this work experience has really heightened my experience of books, especially children’s books and the work that goes in to making them.

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