Copious copywriting at Penguin Group

Tammy Tran

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve loved books. From the flip of a page as you travel deeper into a story to the feel of a spine in the palm of your hand, there is something magical about reading. This summer, I had the opportunity to intern with Penguin Group USA in New York City. Penguin Group USA is the United States affiliate of the internationally renowned Penguin Group, one of the largest book publishers in the world.

I worked specifically with the copy department at Penguin, but also interacted with the editorial department. My main projects involved reading manuscripts of both new and reprinted publications and then writing the text for the front and back covers. I read a wide range of materials, from romance novels to thrillers to women’s fiction. I loved being exposed to new authors and writing styles, and was really appreciative of the opportunities I had to read works that I normally would not have picked up.

One novel, “Joy for Beginners,”is a powerful story about a cancer survivor who embarks on a journey with her closest friends, striving to take more leaps of faith. The book explores each woman’s struggles, vulnerabilities and triumphs, and skillfully weaves each friend’s story together to create a really moving tale. I’d definitely recommend it for anyone looking for an inspirational read!

One of my favorite parts of the internship was having the chance to sit in on meetings. Specifically, I really loved attending cover conferences, which were meetings between the art, copy and editorial departments. This was the place where the design of each book cover was decided on. It was interesting to see how different minds worked and collaborated to best portray a story through packaging.

In the end, I think the most important lesson I took from my internship was recognizing the importance of being passionate about what you do. Everyone I worked with this summer at Penguin harbored a genuine interest books and a strong desire to make sure that literature remains a big part of our world.