Thursday, March 8, 2012

Introducing... Aubrey Poole, Assistant Editor + Giveaway!

By Danielle Jackson
 
In January, I introduced you to Beth, our fellow Casablanca publicist. This month, I’m so excited to introduce you to Aubrey Poole, one of our Assistant Editors, who works out of our New York office. Aubrey is a fun and vibrant part of our romance team and I wanted to make sure all of you knew more about her!

DJ: Tell us a little bit about yourself! How did you get started in publishing and at Sourcebooks?
AP:  Let’s see. I’m originally a California girl. I graduated from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles with a degree in Journalism. But I’m just not nosy enough to enjoy the life of a reporter, so I packed up and moved to New York about five years ago. I got a few temp jobs and a job as an executive assistant before landing at Sourcebooks’ New York office as the editorial assistant for the children’s and young adult editors.  And I’ve been here ever since!

DJ: Aside from romance, what else do you work on at Sourcebooks?
AP:  I acquire middle grade and young adult books as well. I worked only on kids’ books when I started at Sourcebooks, but after we hired Leah Hultenschmidt to acquire for our young adult line, Fire, I started working with her on romance as well. Sometimes it can be a bit jarring to go from editing a middle grade book to a romance, but I’ve always been a closet reader of romances, so I’m enjoying the experience a lot.

DJ: What was it like acquiring your first novel for Sourcebooks? Tell us a little bit about it and the overall experience—essentially making someone’s dream of becoming a published author come true!
AP:  My first solo acquisition was a three-book regency romance deal. The first book in the trilogy by Jayne Fresina, The Most Improper Miss Sophie Valentine, goes on sale in June – and I am crazy excited! I worked closely on many books before this, but there’s nothing like being the one who acquired the project and shepherded it from acquisition to production. It’s a thrill knowing that you “discovered” a new talent and helped to nurture it – and that soon others will enjoy reading it as well. And making “the call” to a debut author is as close as I will ever get to feeling like a Fairy Godmother :-)

DJ: Romance and YA are two genres that, in recent years, have developed quite a bit of overlap between their target audiences. What are some of the biggest differences between working on romance novels and YA novels? What’s similar?
AP:  Well, in both genres romance is queen! A key component to most young adult novels is a strong romantic element. Fear of cooties is no longer strong enough to overcome hormones, and teenagers are definitely looking for books that explore the perils of dating, first love, and more... The difference is that in YA, the romance doesn’t have to be the focus. Young Adult books have a bit more freedom in that regard. Also, the hero and heroine don’t necessarily have to end up together (love triangle, anyone?).

DJ: What do you think about the ever-changing publishing industry? Trends, eBooks, etc.
AP: I think it’s an exciting time to be in publishing! And maybe a bit scary :-). I was looking for a publishing job at the beginning of the Great Recession and that combined with the digital revolution did not make me super optimistic about my chances of scoring a job. But I was lucky. The ever innovative Sourcebooks was actually growing in the “down” economy—and hiring. And that tells you a lot. The industry is rapidly changing – so it’s a bit scary, but there’s also a wealth of opportunity for those who are willing to embrace it. I feel really lucky to be playing a (small) part in the revolution of “the book.”

DJ: What are some of your favorite books/genres to read?
AP:  It’s funny, because I never read YA when I was a teen, but now I’m really enjoying it. And, as I confessed, I’ve always loved escaping into a good romance – especially Regencies and contemporaries. But when I’m not reading for work, I’m a bit of a fantasy/sci-fi geek. I think Neal Stephenson is my current favorite. And it won’t surprise you that I’m a huge LOTR fan.

DJ: What do you love most about your job?
AP:  Editing. I know! Obvious, right? But the one thing I did not anticipate as a “noob” was how much time an editor spends NOT editing. An editor has so many other responsibilities that actually getting to sit down to read and work with a manuscript is a treat.

DJ: Now, I know you’re a California Girl—what made you decide to move to the Big Apple? Where do you like living better?

AP: Oops! I anticipated your question above a little bit. I moved to New York to pursue publishing. We’ve got a lot of filmmakers in LA, but not a log of publishers. I could’ve tried San Francisco, but I was in my early-ish 20s, and I thought to myself: “If you’re ever going to up and move somewhere now is the time.” So I gave my two weeks’ notice, packed up a suitcase and got on a plane. As for where I like living better – people always ask me and I’m still not sure! I LOVE the California weather. Nothing beats it. Give me hot and dry 365 over East Coasters’ beloved “seasons.” But I love New York City – there’s such diversity and so much to do. I’ve met some amazing people here, and I’m definitely not planning on leaving any time soon. But I don’t know if I can live in a tiny apartment forever…

DJ: If you could be any type of romance heroine, what type of leading lady would you be?
AP: Kick-Ass! I’m always drawn to strong heroines. And whether they kick as literally or figuratively, that’s the type of heroine I want to be.

DJ: On the flip side—describe your perfect romance hero!
AP: Oooh – good one. Like most ladies, I’m partial to some nice abs. :-) I have a special fondness for red hair (I know! My sister makes fun of me all the time), but I really only have one requirement when it comes to the physical: I’m not a petite girl, so my biggest requirement in a hero is that I can’t take him in wrestling match! Also, the quirkier the better (shout out to Casablanca author Tawna Fenske here!) I love characters who are just a bit crazy, because, hey – aren’t we all?

DJ: Anything else you’d like to share?
AP:  Thanks, Danielle, for introducing me to the Casa Blog community. I’ve met some of you in person, and I hope to meet many more!

Thanks so much to Aubrey for chatting with us today! For any an all of our submissions guidelines, please visit: http://www.sourcebooks.com/authors/submission-guidelines.html. Do any of you have questions or comments for Aubrey about editing, publishing trends or the differences between the East Coast and West Coast? Just leave her a note and you’ll be entered to win a fabulous Sourcebooks Casablanca Classics Prize Pack (US and Canada only, please leave an email address where we can contact you easily). 2 Winners will be chosen on Monday!

25 comments:

  1. Good morning, Aubrey. It's good to *see* you again. I sat across from you at the author dinner and you taught me how to eat Vietnamese. :)

    Do you have any pet peeves writers should know about? What's something a writer can do to *wow* you?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great to learn more about you! I head you speak at a panel at RWA NY.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Aubrey - we met at RWA in NYC. :)

    Great interview. Thanks for the info about the differences in YA.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Miz Aubrey...great interview. Enjoyed getting to know you better and to hear the excitement in your answers.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi, Aubrey! Good "meeting" you! Got to run with a wild blog tour underway before I'm off to work! But wanted to say hi and welcome!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love this interview! Thank you for taking the time to do it, Aubrey. You do an amazing job...

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi Aubrey! I recognized the name from my inbox a week or two ago!
    It's nice to have "met" you! I look forward to working with you, and I'll teach you to belly dance if you tell me all about Cali!

    :)
    Gina Lamm

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hi Tracey,
    That author dinner was so much fun! It was wonderful meeting everyone. Hmmm, pet peeves... I think it depends on what manuscript I'm editing at the time :-) Everyone author has her strengths and weaknesses. SO, one weak my pet peeve could be excessive use of semi-colons and the next week it's lack of character development. I'm peevish that way!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Aubrey, we're delighted to have you as one of the Sourcebooks' editors. Wishing you much success!
    Amelia

    ReplyDelete
  10. Great interveiw Aubrey! Very interesting post. Do you also edit e-book?

    ReplyDelete
  11. I am a reader but I still find the entire process very interesting. I guess there are benefits to living anywhere. I'm in the suburbs which is what I consider middle road lol but I found NYC to be very exciting. I haven't had the chance to visit CA.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thanks for all the kind words -- Casablanca authors are the best! I look forward to working with you all in the future.
    And to Catslady - I grew up in a small town, so I've pretty much tried it all as well, and I agree there's a lot to be said about each place. But with the sun shining today I'm loving NYC!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Hi, Aubrey! I missed meeting you in person at RWA/NYC, but thanks so much for your great editorial eye. CHASE ME is a better book because of your attention to detail. And if you're annoyed by em dashes, yeah...guilty! ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  14. Hello Aubrey! It is great getting to know you a bit. It sounds like you have a fantastic job!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great interview! It was very informative. Sounds like you have an exciting job!

    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  16. Hi fellow Trojan! How do you keep from making your authors defensive or offended when you want extensive revisions?

    ReplyDelete
  17. Great to meet you Aubrey! Wonderful interview!

    ReplyDelete
  18. It's great to read about what goes on behind the scenes! I'm excited about RT and going to the SB offices. I could hop on a train and see the NYC office...I hope that's a possibility sometime.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Great interview! I also prefer California's weather to New York's, since I hate humidity. Whenever I'm grumbling about the dry heat here, I try to remind myself that at least I'm not feeling sticky while standing in place.

    I've been to NY during the winter and summer seasons, when do you suggest is the best time to visit the Big Apple?

    kliu107(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  20. I am a romance reader who has fallen in love with many YA reads in recent years. What a neat job you have. I visited New York some years back and couldn't get over the great museums. The Metropolitan Museum of Art was such a fascinating place.

    little lamb lst at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  21. I also feel it's an exciting time in the publishing industry. How we read, purchase books and access information is evolving. It's true times are always but it seems to be more prominent now. It's so important to embrace the changes and adjust. I remember when libraries were for books, and they still are but now they have elvoed into a place for the community.

    I know one thing that won't change for me. A good story. That's what I want in a book. A story that moves me and stays with me. I hope writers keep on writing and publishers keep on delivering.

    Cambonified(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  22. What an amazing occupation! Do you ever see yourself doing anything else? Writing perhaps?

    ReplyDelete
  23. Gusty of you, to up and move across the country. But like you said, what a great time to do it. There are a few things that I wish I had gotten around to before my husband and I had kids, and now that we have three under the age of three we wont be doing much of anything for a while. So yay for you =)
    A little intimidating job right? Sounds very interesting though. I enjoyed reading your interview. I wish you luck with your new job, hope you end up absolutely loving it!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Hi, Aubrey, so great getting to know you. Is there any type of story that you haven't seen much of that you'd really like to see? On the flip side, what do you think is over done?

    ReplyDelete
  25. Good Morning! Thank you to everyone who commented. Our winners are Renee and Lil. I'll be emailing you both shortly. Enjoy!

    Danielle

    ReplyDelete