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ECC 2023: Events Recap

What was the ECC up to in 2023?

For the third year in a row, the CBC Early Career Committee kicked off 2023 with a Virtual Trivia Night in mid-February. We love starting out the year with a lighthearted dive into publishing trivia from guessing award winners to how to spell character names. In the past, this has been held over Zoom with the option to have a separate G Meets link sent to your team for private team deliberation while still being on the full event Zoom call. However, this year, we tested out a platform called Gather, which would end up being well-suited for how virtual trivia is set up. We’re happy to say we got a second use out of Gather this year as well. 

Going off of our Gather experiment with Trivia Night, we then decided to try out a Gather—Virtual Networking event. Pre-pandemic, the ECC would organize various “Cafe Conversations” events, in which young publishing professionals in New York City could meet up after work hours, swap books, and network with each other. After being thrown into the virtual event world, we tried our hands at a revamped “Couch Conversations”, in which we would host a casual networking event over Zoom. Unfortunately, the logistics and ease of these proved to be difficult to nail, so we decided to revamp yet again with this year’s “Gather—Virtual Networking.” As stated for trivia, the Gather platform lends itself to much easier organic interaction than a regular Zoom meeting would because of its multitude of options for games, its cute, animated character representing each attendee, and the ability to walk around the Gather map to different games, and conversations happening within. We look forward to bringing this into our 2024 events roster. 

For the second year in a row, the ECC embarked on hosting regular ECC Book Club meetings to discuss two preselected picture books based on a theme. During the event, we had quick storytimes of both books and a discussion to follow each. This has been a wonderful midday event for some lighthearted—yet usually very analytical—conversations about some of the books our fellow publishing professionals have been working on. For anyone who majored in English, if they attended college, it feels a bit like this! The discussion is always very stimulating and inspiring, regardless of the theme or books chosen. For the sake of ease, we are revamping the book club to put a larger emphasis on the storytime aspect of the meeting to encourage more attendance. We’re hoping the messaging will better communicate the lack of work that needs to be done ahead of time, so everyone can feel stress-free about joining! 

Finally, the ECC’s educational forum of the year was titled: Take a Load Off: How to Prioritize and Keep Track of Work Tasks. ECC Secretary, Maggie Salko, moderated a discussion with a select group of panelists about their experiences with time management and prioritization of tasks as mid-level publishing professionals. Panelists included:

  • Rosie Ahmed, Assistant Editor, Dial Books / Penguin Young Readers
  • Shifa Kapadwala, Global Brand Publicity Manager, Scholastic
  • Ally Russell, Marketing Manager, Nosy Crow
  • Anais Villa Gray, Associate Production Manager, Union Square Press

Thank you, panelists, for an amazing discussion and wonderful insight for our Early Career audience as they navigate the importance of work/life balance and how to keep up with all of their responsibilities at work. 

The ECC is looking forward to another fun year of events in 2024, so stay tuned!

Check out more from the Early Career Committee.

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