Interview: Divia Kainth, Marketing and Publicity Executive for Sweet Cherry Publishing
There is no such thing as an ordinary day for Divia Kainth, marketing and publicity executive for Sweet Cherry Publishing in Leicester, England. Sweet Cherry Publishing is an independent children’s book publisher, “passionate about sharing engaging stories with children of all abilities and backgrounds,” according to the company’s website. I interviewed Kainth about her everyday responsibilities and how she got a job in book publishing.
Kainth works on many campaigns for different books at one time, making her job different every day.
“I have a wide range of tasks and responsibilities, but my typical day starts by browsing national and industry news, engaging on social media and then working on campaigns. On one campaign I might be designing and scheduling social media posts, on another I might be updating our website and on another I might be compiling a mailing list for advanced proof copies.”
Sweet Cherry Publishing’s publicity campaigns start around six to eight months pre-publication, Kainth noted.
“So right now, I’m starting our publicity campaign for our yoga-themed picture book author, Lauren Hoffmeier. Lauren is qualified to teach yoga to children and is really keen to promote the benefits of mindfulness for children, so the campaign aims to find the rights places to spread that message,” Kainth added.
Kainth said the most challenging part of her job is juggling the multitude of different tasks on her plate.
“My trick is to stay organised — to-do lists, sticky notes and adding things to calendars. Oh — and taking a deep breath helps too!”
Kainth’s journey to her current job started when she earned a degree in Publishing.
“I was born in Leicester but studied for a degree in Publishing at Oxford Brookes University,” she said. “I gained a bit of work experience with the Taylor & Francis and The Greystones Press during my time at uni, and then when I graduated and moved back home in 2018 I applied for work experience at Sweet Cherry. Shortly after that ended, I applied for the position of Sales and Rights Assistant and got the job! From there I’ve worked in sales, rights, marketing and publicity for nearly three years.”
To be successful in the publishing industry, Kainth says it’s all about your passion for the books.
“You have to enjoy the books you’re working with. The marketing and publicity people work as advocates for a publishers list and their brand, and that comes across in your campaigns.”
Kainth said even though getting into the publishing industry can be difficult, she encourages people seeking a career in the field to keep trying, even after multiple rejections.
“Trust me, I know it’s hard. There was a time when I was having no luck with job applications that I was considering a whole other career. Keep trying and trying, and don’t let rejections put you down. Start with work experience to get a foot in the door and show off what you know.”
“There are also other ways to gain experience working with books — work or volunteer at your local bookshop or library, volunteer to (virtually) read with children you know or at your local school, or offer to help a self-published author to develop skills. These are all ways to gain experience in publishing and bookselling beyond inside a publishing house.”
Overall, Kainth said her favorite part of her job is working with a fun bunch of authors and their books.
“Working as a team to bring their hard work to life and finding fun ways to share it with the world is a huge thrill.”