My publishing career got off to a rough start.

It was a long time ago. First job. First day. First welcome lunch.

First sushi.

Naturally, I couldn’t admit to my new boss that I’d never tried it. Worse, for some reason, I ordered “advanced” sushi—fishy lobes on a wooden plank.

Well, at least I like avocado, I thought, so I speared the green blob on my tray and popped it in my mouth. At which point my nasal passages ignited. Tears and sweat slid down my face. I nearly fell off my chair. I probably should have gone straight to the emergency room but instead continued to make small talk about YA literature (which, incidentally, I pronounced “Yaw,” like YA was a word).

The “avocado” was of course wasabi, and I’d just embarked on my publishing career with a bang (and a burn). I managed to recover, and spent the next twenty years in children’s editorial, enjoying an excellent education in writing, editing, and publishing from authors and colleagues both.

Fast forward to now. I’m the “new person” again, and much has changed. I don’t touch wasabi. I say    “Y. A.” (so in the know). And I’m here at sunny Pippin, with our ceiling-high bookcases, our cheerful red wall, our jaunty Steig pig, busy at his desk. There’s so much to read, and to learn.

Yet much feels familiar, too, in the very best way—like the thrill of watching authors and artists at work, of bringing books to life, of falling in love with new characters (like Bobo and Mitchell, Lennie and Keeper, Betty Bunny and Super Cat…and Dick & Jane too, in a whole new way). Thank you for the warm welcome, Pips, and everyone else out there. I’m so glad to be here.
Posted by elena at 08:03 AM Link to this post
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