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Editorial assistant

Publisher’s employee who assists (and often works as an understudy to) the commissioning editor as well as undertaking some of the work typically the responsibility of a desk editor.

Typically, editorial assistants get to do a lot of the things that other editorial staff would rather avoid. Handled correctly, the situation ensures that the assistant learns her job from the bottom up and in due course graduates to a commissioning editor’s job. That is the assistant’s dream, one that is often realized due to the tendency of commissioning editors to burn out, have babies or move to a better-paying job.

This definition is extracted (and expanded on) from the book Getting Published: A Companion for the Humanities and Social Sciences by Gerald Jackson and Marie Lenstrup. It was first referred to in the blog Getting Published in a post on different editorial staff.

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