While finishing my Masters in History, I decided that I wanted to gain some experience working and living abroad. Luckily enough, I came across Springer’s Cross Cultural Internship, and was able to secure myself a position with Batch 15. As a history student and ferocious reader I have always had a great interest in the writing and production of books, which formed an immediate attraction to me. That the internship took place in India was the cherry on the cake, as I had dealt with the history of the country extensively during my studies, and was very much interested in seeing the places I had read about.
In this I was not disappointed, as during the internship I was able to take enough time to visit the lively metropolis of Mumbai, as well as the striking cave temples of Ajanta and Ellora, the enigmatic ruins of Vijayanagara and the beautiful backwaters of Kochi. Furthermore, several outings organized by the company took us to places closer to Pune, and so I was also able to visit the hill stations surrounding the city, as well as the beach and island fortress at Murud.
However, the travelling around turned out to only be a small part of the actual experience. More important, and in the end much more rewarding, was the work at Crest, and the contact and exchanges I had with my colleagues. After a short stint with quality control for Dutch books, on my own request I was placed in the recently formed Total Services Team for English as a Production Editor. As TSV Editor I was responsible for receiving checking and, where necessary, amending the manuscript sent in by either the New York or Dordrecht offices. Afterwards, I was to monitor the manuscript throughout the production process, and check the final version before sending it off to the printer. This was quite some responsibility, and had the added benefit of showing me the whole process by which books were prepared for print.
The job also entailed that I was in contact with and dependent upon other parts of the Indian team. This could be at times surprising, intriguing, and stimulating (and yes, occasionally infuriating), and made me look both at my own methods of work, as well as those of my Indian colleagues. For those lucky enough to go to India after me I will not ruin the surprise, but rest assured that you will come back with some very interesting new insights, both in the Indian culture as well as your own!