Meet a Lerner: Stephanie Smith

Today, meet Stephanie Smith, one of our marketing interns.

1.What brings you to Lerner?

I got this opportunity at Lerner because of a very considerate former professor who thought I might be a good recommendation for an intern position at Lerner—and since it’s pretty rare for me to turn down an experience—I went for it and very happily got a position as a marketing intern! It was perfect timing since I was planning on quitting my full-time job at a non-profit organization to focus on my educational and professional goals. I also have previous experience in literary publishing at the collegiate level and hoped to tap into that part of my repertoire to enhance my knowledge and skills.

I am currently a full-time fellowship graduate student in the MA English program at St. Thomas University in St. Paul.  I just started in February, so I’m a newbie, but I’m already enjoying the stress and frenzy of it all. Being a full-time student means my program will fly by—in less than a year I will need to make a decision about applying to English PhD programs.  My professional goal is to become a professor of literature and composition. I would also love to be a part of an independent literary arts press some day!

2. Describe a day in the life of a marketing intern.

I think to be a marketing intern you have to be adaptable and willing to learn quickly because at any moment you can be asked to help with a new project by different people. I really think the best part about the internship is the benefit of a hands-on learning experience; I would much rather gain the knowledge and skills through completing a potpourri of publicity and marketing projects. It is exciting to be a part of a creative and hard-working department, even if I’m just a small part of it!

3. What are you reading now?

Since I’m a graduate student, reading is, well, all I really do!  But, I always have five books open at once, so besides reading for class, I’ve got a lot going on including Shunryū Suzuki’s Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind and an anthology of Kate Chopin’s works.

4. What’s your best source for finding new book recommendations?

Writers! In their own work, writers are constantly referencing other works.  I look out for the references in their writing—and then I follow the thread!

5. Top 5 (or so) favorite books. Go!

I couldn’t just pick books for my favorite reads!

  • The Awakening, Kate Chopin
  • Antony and Cleopatra, William Shakespeare
  • Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë
  • Sula, Toni Morrison
  • I Must Not Think Bad Thoughts, Mark Dery
  • Wide Sargasso Sea, Jean Rhys
  • Burning in Water, Drowning in Flame, Charles Bukowski 

6. Name some of your icons.

I very much admire Doris Lessing, author of The Golden Notebook. I would have listed it as one of my top books, but I have been unable to finish the entire novel—not because I didn’t like it—but because it was so emotionally intense and it seemed like the novel was reading my psyche!  I got too immersed and had to put it away for a while to disconnect from it.  I mean, if someone can write a book like that—how could you not admire her?

7. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live and why?

This is a hard question for me since whenever I visit new places, I want to live there. If I really had the means, I think I would live in a small beach town where I could take walks near the beach every day. Paradoxically, I really like hot, dry weather, so I would be up for living in a desert landscape, too. Also, I like food, so I’d have to be close to good eating.

Thanks, Stephanie!