Tales Post – Inside Stripes – Jessie Sullivan


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As part of my prize for winning the UKYABA for Champion Newcomer in March 2015 I was offered exclusivity on all Stripes titles and content as well as a wonderful book voucher and of course a beautiful award!

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I thought to coincide with this it would be nice to gain an insight into the team at Stripes and get to know them and their department a little better.

To do this I tasked the lovely people at Stripes with a gruelling questionnaire…..okay maybe it wasn’t gruelling and kind of fun …. *evil laugh*

And Inside Stripes was born….

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Over the course of the month Inside Stripes will aim to give people a look into the Stripes world, the team, their departments and more.


Here’s a little sneak peak at the Stripes Publishing office!

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Who are you?

Jessie Sullivan jessies

(That cocktail glass is actually surgically attached to my hand, honest. No, I’m not lying. No, it’s not an excuse for my alcoholism.)

Which department do you work in?

I work in the Marketing & Publicity Department. Here’s a picture of my desk.

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There are a few important things to note. One – the bubbles. I use these when I am too stressed because it has been proven scientifically impossibly (probably?) to be stressed and be blowing bubbles at the same time. Two – Jake Gyllenhaal. This is my wall of beautiful people. I change it weekly to keep me on my toes. I’m spontaneous like that. Past occupants have been Ruby Rose, Amy Poehler, Chris Pratt, the whole cast of Parks & Rec and Jake Gyllenhaal  (he’s featured at least 6-7 times). Three – Billy the Snow Bear. Sometimes when I’m unsure about a campaign I’ll run it past Bill. I can always trust him to be honest with me.

Here’s a picture of the wall behind me.

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This is a wall of both useful (calendar and grids) and unhelpful but emotionally stimulating things. I have cards pinned up from kind authors and illustrators thanking me for their campaigns. I have cards from people I know within the industry who I adore. I have some mementos from some campaigns I am proud of. If anyone would like to add to this wall – please do send on. I accept all bribery – wait, what?

What is the departments function at Stripes?

We look after creating and implementing all of the publicity and marketing campaigns for all of our UK books. This means I work on everything from Baby’s first books to YA. It means I talk to reviewers, journalists, TV presenters, advertisers, editors, designers, animators and OF COURSE the wonderful bloggers.

What is your job title?

Senior Press & Marketing Officer (Yeah, an officer. That means I’m the law…of books?!)

Tell us a little about what you do or things you work on in your department.

My main function is to make sure that our wonderful readers and consumers (parents, teachers etc.) know about our books. This means I create integrated publicity and marketing campaigns for each book to make sure they’re seen by the right people. This can range from direct social media campaigns to adverts placed in Teaching Magazines to reviews in the national newspapers. Anywhere where you have seen a book promoted, I have a hand in.

What are you currently working on whilst you are answering this questionnaire…if you are allowed to share?

I am currently working on our September titles for review (the new Red Eye anyone?)  as well as our Christmas books and setting up the more general plan for all our 2016 books.

What is the favourite part of your job?

My job is based on great interpersonal relationships so I enjoy meeting new people – whether that be reviewers or bloggers or authors or illustrators or colleagues – and building up a good rapport. I like people.

Now it’s time for…..Quick-Fire Questions!

Describe yourself in 3 words

I love ducks

Favourite book?

Wow. Tough question! I recently read The Mermaid’s Sister by Carrie Anne Noble and I can’t recommend it enough. A brilliant and unique novel!

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What’s your favourite place on earth?

I grew up in Australia so there are quite a few places I could name out there BUT my favourite place would have to be at Rossi’s Ice Cream Parlour on the Essex Coast with my family

What’s your favourite food?

Phew – an easy question. Salted Popcorn

Favourite word?

Bungalow. Say it three times as fast as you can and I challenge you not to smile.

What’s the one thing you can’t live without?

I’m assuming my family and friends and books aren’t included in this. Yes? In that case, an eyelash curler.

If you could time warp yourself to any point in history when would it be, who would you hang out with?

I’d love to hang out with Jerry Lee Lewis. Screw that – I’d go back to that fateful night on December 4th 1956 that Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins came together at Sun Record Studios in Memphis, Tennessee, and I’d just watch them make the most magical music together.

If you had a super power what would it be?

I would be able to read, write, speak and understand every language in the whole wide world. Imagine the possibilities. Imagine all the cultures that you could immerse yourself in!

What’s the most embarrassing thing you’ve ever done?

I don’t embarrass easy. I’m extremely clumsy and fall over quite a bit but it doesn’t embarrass me as such. It’s more that I have just accepted that this is a part of my daily life. Though once I did fall from the top of a bench down some stairs to the basement floor in front of hundreds of people. Though, I wasn’t too much as embarrassed as convinced I was a superhero because I hadn’t broken anything.

Tell us something funny about another member of the Stripes Team!

I feel like most of the funny stories may be aimed at me but here’s some stories – funny and factual. 

Nik can be convinced to do anything with the promise of Nando’s. 

Lucy and I once went to Wahaca and she drank all the Tequlia and forgot how to eat.  

Jane has run 10,000 marathons (or a similarly impressive number).

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Want to know more about the Stripes Publishing Team….find more blog posts by clicking on the links below…

Inside Stripes – Nik Bhatia

Inside Stripes – Ruth Bennett

Inside Stripes – Jesse Green

Inside Stripes – Emily Hibbs

Inside Stripes – Jane Harris

Inside Stripes – Ali Ardington

Inside Stripes – Caroline Hill-Trevor

Inside Stripes – Hayley Castle


 So there you have it!  That’s lovely Jessie Sullivan!

A huge thank you to Jessie and all of Stripes Publishing who played along with my questionnaire idea!  You are all awesome!

You can follow Stripes Publishing using @Stripesbooks

Or check out their awesome website – www.stripespublishing.co.uk

Check back soon for more Inside Stripes!

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I am often known to be a bit clumsy and a little loopy! Book loving (obsessed), theatre loving, slasher film loving csi geek!
Winner of UKYABA Champion Newcomer 2015 and nominated for Champion of Social Media 2016 and Blogger Of The Year 2016!

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