Spain, Oxford, Perth: Olivia’s journey

OliviaOur Company

The Tay from Kinnoull Hill. © 2019 Olivia McGrath.

I started working at Prepress Projects 10 months ago, after deciding to relocate to Perth from Oxford.

My publishing career began in Oxford, following a year of teaching English in Galicia, Spain. Although I was initially reluctant to leave a life of tapas and travel behind, I decided it was time to fulfil my ambition to work in publishing. I secured an internship as an editorial assistant at Richmond ELT, an imprint of the Spanish publishing giant, Santillana. After 6 months of valuable editorial experience working across a range of English-language teaching (ELT) courses, I joined Oxford University Press as a production editor in the Primary ELT department. I worked my way up to senior production editor, gaining a wealth of experience along the way.

As my role became mostly project management, I began to crave a new challenge that focused on using and improving my editorial skill set. I saw a project editor position at Prepress Projects advertised on the Publishing Scotland website and decided to apply. There were two reasons behind my decision to relocate: first, and most importantly, the job satisfied my desire to use my editorial skills in a wide range of subject areas; second, I wanted to return to Scotland, having studied here for my degree.

Coming from a big publishing house, it definitely took some time to adapt to my new surroundings; I had gone from being the editorial client to working for clients within a matter of weeks. Luckily, my new colleagues’ warm welcome and subsequent efforts to assimilate me into the team made the transition seamless. I was soon familiar with the work processes and various style guides. Frequent training opportunities also helped to increase my newly acquired knowledge and boost my confidence in the role.

The work itself has been really interesting and the variety has exceeded expectations. I have edited numerous reports and documents in the fields of European affairs, law, banking, science and the environment. I have also had the opportunity to take on several writing tasks, which have allowed me to tap into my creative side.

As a new resident of Perth, I also had the additional challenge of discovering and navigating my new home. This became less of a daunting task thanks to my new colleagues. They generously involved me in their social events, and they were also more than willing to help with non-work-related predicaments. Who knows if I would ever have made it to my first netball session without their local knowledge!

All in all, it has been a brilliant 10 months and I have thoroughly enjoyed my experience of working at Prepress Projects so far.