Madeleine McManus

Country: United Kingdom
Sector: Journalism, Media and Publishing
Job title: Sales and Marketing Assistant
Subject of study: English and Film & TV Studies
Year of graduation: 2022
Type/Level of study: Undergraduate

Current Employer/Organisation Name

David and Charles

What have you been doing since leaving Exeter, and what are you doing now?

I started this role before I graduated! As soon as I handed in my dissertation I was eager to begin my career in publishing and the perfect job opportunity came up that meant I could stay in Exeter whilst gaining extensive experience in being a sales and marketing assistant. 10 months on and I am still loving my role at the independent craft publishing house, David And Charles. This role has me provide a wide range of sales and marketing support to UK and international accounts.

Why did you choose this career? And what do you enjoy most about your work?

I studied a Publishing module in my final year and felt inspired to pursue this as a career. I had relevant marketing experience and I previously worked at an independent bookstore during my gap year. I am enjoying how diverse my work is – as David And Charles is a smaller, independent company I get a lot of flexibility in what my day-to-day looks like. My favourite part of my role is that I often get to attend Book and Craft Fairs and I even get to help on the film sets for our online courses.

Please tell us if you were a member of any societies, groups or sports clubs?

I was Vice-President of the K-Pop Society during my second year and was an active member of the Riding Society during my final year.

Were you part of the Exeter Student Ambassador Scheme at any point during your studies?


What did you enjoy most about your programme and what was the biggest highlight?

The combination of English and Film was a great balance for me as I felt like I got the best of both worlds. During my final year, I got to make a video essay instead of a traditional essay which gave me the creative freedom to really explore my topic of The Woman In Black 2012 film and if the rating of the film being a ’12’ was appropriate. The biggest highlight of my course has to be the publishing module that I took during my final year. This module was instrumental in me learning the basics of the publishing industry and I felt like I had a good basis of knowledge when I started my job.

What did you enjoy most about studying here?

I loved the library! I often would come home with a few more books each week which meant by the end of term I’d had to get some friends to help me carry all my books back to the library. During my final year I also went to St Luke’s library a lot which is in a gorgeous and quiet campus with plenty more books to get distracted by.

Why did you choose to study at Exeter?

Coming from Bournemouth, the size of Exeter town felt quite similar and Exeter’s location meant I wouldn’t be too far away from home. I loved the fact you could get a train to a nice beach during the summer and that there were plenty of societies and night life to get involved with. The combination of studying English and Film was a unique one and the modules they provided at Exeter for this course really stood out to me.

What skills and experiences have been most useful for your career?

The written and communication skills I gained from my time in Exeter have been instrumental in my confidence in my day-to-day roles at my job. The publishing module I took during my final year was particularly helpful in understanding certain publishing terminology and concepts which I still use now.

What advice would you give to a current student who wishes to pursue your career?

Join the Society of Young Publishers, create a Twitter account dedicated to all things books and publishing and try to get some experience working at a publishing house or a bookstore.

What are your plans for the future?

I plan to continue to build my career in publishing and work my way up within David And Charles. I would also love to consider travelling as hybrid working is now a viable option.

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