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Volunteering for Honno

One of Honno’s aims is to provide opportunities for women in Wales in publishing. One of the ways we do this is by having volunteers in the Honno office, to allow them to gain practical experience and a valuable insight into how publishing works. Volunteers generally take part in marketing activities, read manuscripts, help with general office procedure, and work on other projects as required.


We are unfortunately unable to pay expenses, but our volunteers have found that the experience has been of great benefit in helping decide their career path and in future job applications.  Volunteers work in the office for five days over a period of between two and four weeks, depending on current projects and availability of space in the office.

If you are interested in volunteering for Honno please send your CV, details of availability and why you are interested in gaining work experience in publishing to Helena Earnshaw: and we will contact you during our next round of recruitment.

We have had many many wonderful women volunteering for Honno, all of whose time and energy has been greatly appreciated, and many of whom have gone on to work in various areas of publishing. Some of our previous volunteers talk about how the experience was for them:


Mary Bowen-Perkins
March – April 2018

I volunteered with Honno for four days spread over the course of a month, and I enjoyed every moment I spent there. I’m currently studying for a bachelor’s in English and History, and I was keen to learn more about the publishing industry, which I am considering working in after university. The aim of Honno, to promote works by Welsh women writers, also appealed to me, and I was very excited to have the opportunity to work with them.

While at Honno, I read and wrote reports for manuscripts, searched through reviews for quotes on books, and looked into how to further promote Honno online. In particular, I worked on getting Honno set up on Instagram and looking into ways to advertise their LGBT+ books. I realised while doing all of this that I actually have a strong interest in marketing – something I wasn’t aware of before! It was great to get the chance to practice the writing and researching skills I’ve learnt at university outside of my degree, as well as to put my knowledge of social media to use in a productive way.

The ladies who work at Honno were all lovely to work with. They were very welcoming and knowledgeable; I felt I gained a lot from volunteering with them. All in all, I had a wonderful experience at Honno, and I would highly recommend volunteering with them to anyone interested in publishing or Welsh women’s writing.


Sara Stokes
December 2017

Sara StokesI volunteered with Honno for only three days, which was honestly not long enough! I am currently in my 3rd Year at Aberystwyth University studying English Literature and Creative Writing. I decided to volunteer at Honno so I could experience different aspects of the publishing industry and see what my preference would be for the future.
Whilst at Honno, I packaged orders and started to compile book reviews to put on the website. My favourite task was reading through several manuscripts and writing reports on them. I found it very interesting.
Honno are very welcoming and made me feel comfortable straight away. I learnt a lot within three days and got the most of my time there. Thank you for a great opportunity and I would certainly encourage anyone else looking for experience in the publishing industry to go to Honno!

Laura Walters
November 2017

I came to volunteer for Honno during my final year of my history degree. I’d hoped that I would be able to  gain a better understanding of the publishing industry, what kind of jobs were available within it, which I did, and whether or not a job in publishing was for me. After undergoing various tasks I knew that the editorial side of the industry was what appealed to me most.

This experience not only helped me boost my CV and understand publishing a bit better, but it also enabled me to test some skills I have developed throughout my degree such as researching and analysis.

The women at Honno were so welcoming and friendly. They were happy to answer any questions, give advice and made me feel like part of the team. I am very grateful for the experience and would love to come back and volunteer again.

Mair Jones
July 2017

Roisin Gwyion
May – June 2017

I graduated from The University of Edinburgh in Italian and English Literature. I was thrilled to volunteer with Honno from May to June 2017 by attending their office around once or twice a week. I wanted to gain more experience in the publishing industry in order to strengthen my CV for my future career prospects. Publishing seems an incredibly challenging and rewarding industry with plenty of variety, such as when working with numerous writers, graphic designers and even creative illustrators and art directors in larger publishing houses, and I wanted to develop my understanding of this industry through work experience.

I was primarily involved in marketing tasks, such as market research, writing newsletters, updating social media sites and publicising literary events both in Welsh and English. I additionally completed various administrative tasks which gave me a good understanding of the daily activities in a publishing environment. I particularly enjoyed writing reader reports on typescripts that were received by Honno – it felt a privilege to read the very diverse and engaging raw ideas of budding writers and talented narrators. I thoroughly enjoyed my brief but very valuable experience with Honno and it has reinforced my interest in working in this field. When one is passionate about literature and how it can both inform and transform the world around us and the way in which we perceive it, such an experience is profoundly advantageous and worthwhile. Thank you very much Honno!

Linda Rhinehart
April – May 2017

I volunteered with Honno after the completion of my MPhil in English literature. I had been looking to gain work experience in a publishing press and Honno were by far the most supportive of my wishes.

Over the few days I volunteered there, I learned more about how a small publishing press is run and what roles different people may play, and was tasked with reading two manuscripts that had been submitted and then writing reviews of them, which I found especially challenging and interesting. I also made spreadsheets of information, printed and filed documents manually, entered new information onto the publisher’s website, and helped send off envelopes.

Overall I found my experience at Honno to be helpful, since I now have a better idea of the kinds of things I would be doing as an editor or working in publishing, and I would like to continue to develop my interest in these areas. The staff at Honno were likewise very friendly and helpful.

Eleanor Hughes
March 2017

Sophie Davies
January – February 2017

I volunteered at Honno for a month while completing my MA in Literary Studies at Aberystwyth University. It was such a lovely experience! From the moment I stepped through the door, I felt at home.

During my time here, I completed various admin tasks, such as organising files, transferring data and arranging press releases. I was also lucky enough to read several manuscripts and create a reader’s report on each. I was thrilled that the team valued my opinions and it made me even more eager to learn from them.

One of my favourite tasks was advertising numerous events through Honno’s social media. Here, I was trusted to create event pages and newsletters for book launches, literary talks, etc. This gave me an insight into an aspect of publishing I had never considered – marketing.

All of the women at Honno are helpful, considerate and welcoming individuals. I was never afraid to ask any questions and I learnt so much from them. Thank you Honno for this opportunity!

Leanne Nulty
October – November 2016

I volunteered with Honno once a week for six weeks during the 3rd year of my degree in English Literature and Creative Writing. This was one of the most valuable experiences I’ve had during my time in Aberystwyth, and gave me the opportunity to try out many different aspects of the publishing industry. I was able to work on admins tasks and filing, gather book reviews and quotes to put online, and briefly work with Twitter and Goodreads. I was also able to attend a Production Meeting where I had the chance to see how Honno schedule their deadlines and plan what is coming up over the next year. However, the aspect of the work I enjoyed the most was the opportunity to read manuscripts and write a reader’s report afterwards. This was the area of publishing I was most interested in and Honno allowed me devote much of my focus to this. Everyone at Honno has been incredibly kind and helpful; I felt welcome from my very first day in the office, and they were always willing to answer any queries I had. There was always a real sense that they wanted me to get the most out of my time there, and I definitely did!

Honno has given me a fantastic start to my experience in the publishing industry and has cemented my ambition to follow a career within the industry. I’m very grateful for my time there!

Maria Wyles
September 2016

Natalie Dale
August – September 2016

I really enjoyed helping to organise Honno’s thirtieth anniversary event. I co-ordinated with other volunteers and the Marketing Manager on all aspects of the organisation. I helped to create marketing material in the run up to the event and assisted in sourcing materials for the event. I also helped to market the event locally, leaving posters and flyers with local businesses and promoting the event on social media. On the day, I was able to sort through archive material to create display boards for the event. It was amazing to see how much Honno have achieved in thirty years, giving women in Wales a voice. I had a great time working with the team at Honno and I would recommend volunteering with them to anyone hoping to gain some experience in publishing.

Victoria David
August – September 2016

After completing my Masters in Creative Writing, I began looking for relevant work experience in the publishing industry, an industry that I had decided to pursue as a career after working at Waterstones. On hearing that Honno was celebrating their 30th anniversary, and was looking for volunteers I signed up to help organise the event.

During my time working with Honno, I curated and put together from Honno’s archives a series of display boards. These covered Honno’s history from its beginnings at a kitchen table in Cardiff all the way to the present day. In addition, it looked at their extensive publishing backlog and had an in depth look at many of the books they published. It was a fascinating chance to look through Honno’s history, and I found it very inspiring to see how much had been achieved in only thirty years. I also, helped with creating an online presence about Honno’s 30th Anniversary, by posting about it on social media, and putting up posters. On the day I was involved in the set up, and organising of the event.

I found it to be a fascinating experience working with so many inspirational, and interesting women – both authors and the Honno press team themselves. It was an amazing opportunity, and I felt that I learnt a lot about the industry from watching them work and helping to organise such a successful event.

Sarah Hudis
June 2016

Volunteering at Honno is a great experience and I highly recommend it to anyone interested in working in the publishing industry and looking to find out more about the process or gain experience in the field.

I volunteered with Honno twice a week for three weeks during the summer break whilst studying for my BA in English Literature. I worked on a huge range of different tasks during that time including posting royalty statements, tweeting about promotions, researching ideas for a book cover, and reading a manuscript and writing a reader’s report. I was also able to sit in on a production meeting. The atmosphere in the office is lovely and everyone who works for Honno is so friendly and helpful.

I’m very grateful to have had the opportunity to volunteer with an organisation that does such important work in the field of women’s writing, whilst building up my C.V. A very valuable experience!

Joanna Jones
April – May 2016

Sophia Leonard
January – March 2016

I volunteered on Tuesday and Thursday mornings for Honno between January and March of my third year at Aberystwyth University whilst studying for a degree in English and World Literatures.

During my time at Honno, I helped with a range of things from office work and helping to box up books to be sent off, to reading a manuscript and writing up a reader’s report. I was also able to sit in on the fortnightly meetings and as such gain further insight into what goes on ‘behind the scenes’ of a publishing house.

Whilst I was at Honno, it celebrated it’s 30th birthday and I was asked to compile a list of press cuttings from the past 30 years. It gave me a greater understanding of how much Honno has done to raise the importance of women’s writing in Wales.

Despite volunteering during the busiest part of my degree, the ladies at Honno were extremely understanding and so supportive. Volunteering at Honno has given me an invaluable experience and helped further my interest in a career in book publishing.

Emma Musty
October – December 2015

Rosy Adams
August – September 2015

I volunteered at Honno Press in the Summer of 2015, after my third year of the BA Creative Writing at University of Wales Trinity Saint David. I found it to be an invaluable insight into what goes on after manuscripts are submitted for publication. It was wonderful to have a chance to see the whole process from start to finish, from editing, through finding and choosing cover art, to holding the finished book in your hands.

The staff at Honno were very friendly and welcoming. They always took the time to answer my questions, no matter how busy they were. It’s a great way to find out how the publishing process works.

Maddy Mcglynn
February – April 2015

Lauren Mundee
June – July 2014

I volunteered at Honno over the summer 2014 whilst completing my Scriptwriting MA. My time here was spent doing a mixture of jobs from admin tasks and filling, to send outs of new titles, updating databases and blurbs, to helping read and compile a collection of shorts for an Austen Anthology, which was very stimulating to be a part of. There was a variety of interesting To Do Lists on the desk every Wednesday I came in, to keep me occupied and give me a good idea of what goes on on a day to day basis. I also got to sit in on bi-weekly meetings which gave me a better understanding of what sort of deadlines the women at Honno worked to and what the year’s calendar looked like.

I thoroughly enjoyed my time volunteering at Honno; the women who work there were both extremely passionate and hard-working and made me feel very welcome. Everyone in the office was very friendly and helpful when answering any publishing queries I had, especially the editor Caroline who had to put up with my endless questions every Wednesday and Marketing Manager Helena who organised tasks for me to complete every week.

Working at Honno has given me a greater understanding of the publishing world and hopefully will help enable me to follow a career in publishing myself.

Rosy Evans
April – June 2013

I first encountered Honno at their annual book sale in 2013, and I came in as a volunteer during my last month at Aberystwyth University finishing my BA in Literature and Creative Writing. Throughout my time here, I have not only witnessed but taken part in the daily running of Honno; archiving press cuttings and helping to manage new book releases. The opportunity to construct a reader’s report on the first fifty pages of a manuscript was very exciting, and I learnt a lot about the transition from critical, academic writing to a professional consideration of manuscripts. In the future I would like to enter into the publishing industry in a book acquisitions role, and Honno were eager to help me gain the experience I needed. The volunteer post was invaluable to me, as the publishing process can initially be a little overwhelming; yet coming in two days a week was ideal for me to ease away from university and into a job. It is very difficult indeed to get a career in publishing without at least some experience in the industry, and I am so very grateful for Honno for granting me this opportunity of an insight into publishing, thank you!

Gemma Gardner
March 2013

I volunteered at Honno Press while completing my final year of a degree in English Literature and Creative Writing at Aberystwyth University. I am pursuing a career in book publishing, and the voluntary position allowed me to gain some very valuable experience and knowledge of the industry.

It has been both interesting and helpful to learn about what goes on in the day-to-day running of a publishing house, and the experience confirmed my interest in a career in publishing. During my time at Honno Press, I helped the staff with office tasks, sat in on a production meeting and learnt about the projects which Honno undertakes. I even had the opportunity to write a reader’s report on the first fifty pages of a manuscript, which was a really amazing experience, and gave me a great insight into the editorial role that I am looking to pursue.

I am very grateful to Honno for the opportunity; this experience has spurred me on in my aim to pursue a career in publishing. I feel privileged to have volunteered at Honno, and to have been a part of the important work they do in foregrounding Welsh women’s writing.

Thank you Honno for a fantastic and enlightening experience!

Nej Steer
October 2012 – January 2013

I worked sporadically with Honno, volunteering in the office over the winter of 2012/2013. It’s been an excellent experience and one of my favourite voluntary positions I’ve ever held. I came into the position with little to no understanding of how the publishing world worked, and even in my brief time here, it’s been eye-opening. My original motives were to be able to understand more about the profession and to ensure this was a career path I definitely wanted to pursue. Although my tasks and responsibilities were minimal, the wealth of knowledge I was given access to purely by being in the room with these inspirational ladies was infinite. I will always be grateful.

Amelia Spencer
May – July 2012

I have been volunteering with Honno once a week whilst completing my MA in Creative Writing at Aberystwyth University. I am keen to learn about the publishing industry and gain any experience that may enhance my future career. I felt that working with Honno would provide a good transition between university and the professional world and I feel I have gained some valuable skills that will greatly assist me in the future.

I have had the opportunity to help with the day to day running of Honno press and I have encountered “behind the scenes” aspects of book publishing. As well as learning basic office skills, I have completed tasks such as exporting files in order to update databases, organising press clippings and advertisements and starting to compile research for an upcoming Honno Classics project.

It has been a pleasure to work as part of the Honno team and I am so grateful that I have had the opportunity to experience the everyday workings of a publishing house. It has been wonderful to learn more about the literary culture in Wales and meet several Honno committee members who are so committed to providing opportunities for Welsh women. My time with Honno has been invaluable and has served to fuel my passion for book publishing.

Alys Hurn
May – June 2012

I volunteered for Honno Press whilst studying English Literature and creative writing at Aberystwyth University. Although I was only in my first year of study, I had begun to develop an interest in book publishing. I thought that working with Honno would help me to gain some experience in the industry to aid my progression into a career in publishing. I was not disappointed! My time spent at Honno was extremely rewarding and has only fuelled my interest in book publishing.

During my time at Honno I helped the staff with general office tasks such as weighing books to be processed onto the website, filing and organising press clippings and participating in the general day-to-day running of the office. My main task, however, was helping to organise Honno’s 25th birthday party, held at the Hay literary festival. This gave me a wonderful insight into the history of Honno Press and I was inspired by the legacy left by the founders of Honno that enabled women in Wales to publish fantastic books.

I would like to thank everyone at Honno for giving me the opportunity to gain invaluable experience and putting me on the right track to (hopefully!) achieving a career in book publishing.

Lizzie Apichella
Publicity and Marketing Intern
April – June 2011

It has been fantastic interning with Honno Press! I feel I have a good insight into publishing that will take me on to the next step of my career.

I am finishing my MA in Literary Studies from Aberystwyth and am glad to have gotten to know the rich literary heritage and culture very much alive in Wales.

I have enjoyed helping with the day-to-day workings of this publishing house, meeting authors, setting up publicity stalls and putting Honno on Facebook. Specifically, I have been setting up the new Honno Classics Book Club, and getting to grips with the numerous tasks this entails including: planning its structure, website content and design, paper advertising and social media promotion. We have also forged links with the new Centre for Women’s Writing and Literary Culture based at Aberystwyth University. Though I am leaving Aberystwyth to finish my dissertation, I wish I could stay longer as Stephanie, Caroline and the Honno committee have been nothing but supportive and encouraging.

Spencer Jones
June – July 2010

The staff at Honno are very down to earth and charming and they contributed to the overall atmosphere. Even though I had a rather limited understanding of publishing, I was still able to do many different tasks that made me feel like I was part of the Honno team, if only temporarily. As an American, I was interested to see how a British publisher might go about distributing books to other English speaking audiences (taking into account the differences in spelling and such). Even though I’m not Welsh (despite my last name), I found it empowering to work in a publishing company that was run by women for female writers.

Madeleine Johnson
May – June 2009

I wanted to do work experience at Honno to learn a bit more about publishing, which was where I was hoping my career would take me. I only spent a few days in the office, but the experience I gained was invaluable. I was kept busy with setting out books and preparing display boards for an open day; checking a guest list for a book launch; updating the website with quotations from the press and even getting to review a book for the Western Mail! Caroline, Honno’s editor, gave me a unique insight into what an editor does day-to-day, while Helena showed me a side of publishing I had never really thought much about: marketing. I ended up going into sales, and I get to do some marketing as a part of this. My experience at Honno played a huge part in developing an interest in marketing and gave me solid experience to offer employers. Aside from that, I really enjoyed it and the staff were fantastic!

Poppy Miles
January – February 2009

Penny Wild
July – August 2008

Felicity Evans
March – April 2008

Amber Wainwright
November – December 2007

Caroline Strong
July – August 2007

After completing my degree in English Literature from the University of Southampton I was lucky enough to spend a summer doing work experience, for one day a week, with Honno. Whilst there I was taught about the individual jobs and departments within the publishing industry which helped me to focus more on the role I would like to aim for in my future career, as well as gaining hands-on experience into the day-to-day workings of small publishing house. I also gained valuable office experience, right down to the basics, including working the photocopier! During my time at Honno I helped Helena prepare for an upcoming book launch for one of their authors which was a glimpse into the more glamorous side of the publishing world! When I completed the period of work experience it was great being able to display my new skills that I had obtained on my CV and with this behind me I was fortunate enough to gain a position as a Production Assistant at a local journal publishers. My experience at Honno gave me the confidence and knowledge to gain this role and lay the foundations for my future career within the publishing industry. In 2010 Caroline managed to secure a position at Templar Children’s publishers as an R&D Assistant.

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