I have decided to blog again ! To celebrate this, I asked my French publisher, Mrs Paola Grieco, working for Gulf Stream Editeur, to answer a few of my questions. It naturally concerns the publishing trade, but also Young Adult literature, since Gulf Stream is specialised in children and YA titles.
1/ Hi Paola, thank you for having accepted this interview ! Can you introduce yourself?
I first obtained my research degree in History in 2001. I was a teacher during a few years in a secondary school before changing my mind and taking up again a degree in publishing. I joined the team of Gulf Stream Editeur in 2007, a publisher specialised in children and YA books, located at Nantes. My main purpose was to expand Gulf Stream’s catalog. So, after having launched several collections of nonfiction picture books focused on the French natural and cultural heritage, I wanted to develop the range of fiction, therefore giving a new direction to the editorial line.
Since 2012 Gulf Stream published several series of MG and YA books, whether they are set in fantasy worlds or exploring contemporary themes.
Besides, I also work closely with a reading group of a hundred or so teenagers, boys and girls, from 11 to 17 years. They read the novels that caught my eye in the slush pile and give me their opinion about them. It’s a very constructive exchange!
2/ How did you join Gulf Stream Editeur ?
At the end of my studies, I completed an internship at Gulf Stream and had the opportunity to join the editorial team. I have been working as a publisher for nine years.
3/ What’s your greatest pleasure as a publisher ? And inversely – what do you like the least?
My greatest pleasure is to inform an author that I love his/her book, that it perfectly meets my expectations as well as the team’s ones.
I really don’t like to keep the authors waiting. I would love to answer more quickly the ones waiting for an answer after having submitted their manuscripts, as well as the authors waiting for a publication date. However, Gulf Stream publishes 35 titles per year and the publication agenda is quickly filled up. And unfortunately, my reading time is not really expandable.
4/ What’s your approach to children & YA literature?
I think it’s possible to put any book in the hands of teenagers, provided that the publisher is convinced that this book will provide food for thought to young minds, eager for new discoveries and thrilling texts. I publish books that I would have loved to read when I was a teenager, as well as texts catching the reader off guard.
5/ A last word ?
I have always been strongly interested in the world of books and pictures. When I was a kid – some thirty years ago… How time flies! – I was writing and drawing for my brother, already creating little books without thinking for a second that it could be my job when I will be older.
And now here I am, always taking a great pleasure in transmitting the passion I feel for the books I’m publishing.