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In honor of April being National Poetry Month, we’re featuring Jackie Bluu, class of 2016. Jackie’s brilliant poetry collection My Dear Melancholia, is set to be published next month by Bluu Books. This small book is comprised of fifteen sensational poems and vivid illustrations that tickle your most somber thoughts and awaken your deepest emotions. My Dear Melancholia focuses on the long-term healing process of mental illness, while also fighting to figure out one’s identity and personality without it.

Read more about her below!

What is your current job title and some of your responsibilities?

My current job title is Assistant Publicist at Columbia University Press, where I perform email outreach and send review copies to media outlets to gain traction for our titles and authors. I also manage our list of client presses as well as organize author events and launches at various bookstores.

How did the classes you took during your time in the program prepare you to work in the industry?

The classes I took at Pace gave me an idea of which department I wanted to end up working in publishing. They also helped me understand how to run a magazine, which I’ve always had a huge interest in – hence starting my literary and arts magazine, FishFood.

Did you have an internship? If so, what was it and how did it prepare you for your current position? 

I had an internship at Workman Publishing – Although most of my work there consisted of sending out mail, I think interning in the publicity department gave me an idea of what to expect in terms of job responsibilities.

What advice do you have for current students in the program?

My advice for current students in the program is to find out early on which department they’d like to pursue. Interning in each department is a great way to gain that experience and discover what they actually enjoy doing. This way there are no regrets down the line.

Where do you hope to see yourself in 5-10 years?

In 5-10 years I hope to be a successful author – not successful as in famous, just enough so that I am able to make a sufficient living off my writing.

What are your favorite aspects of the publishing industry?

My favorite aspects of the publishing industry would have to be the indefinite access to books and access to a large, growing media pool.

What are you reading right now? Either for work or for pleasure.

I started reading The Doll Factory by Elizabeth Macneal – we’ll see how it ends, but I like where it’s going so far.