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Jessica Purgett '20 Headshot

Undergraduate Program

Jessica Purgett '20

English & Marketing

Proofing her Future

This article was originally published in the Mount Mercy Times on Jan. 17, 2019 by Courtney Hoffman, news editor.

Finding time to balance work, school, friends, and family, extracurriculars, and more can be extremely difficult.

This rings true for junior Jessica Purgett, an English and marketing double-major with a double-minor in Spanish and creative writing. She currently balances an on-campus job, school, working for Paha, and a marketing internship, all while trying to gain another in the publishing field.

Editing as a profession

Through her work as an editor for the Paha Review, Purgett is pretty sure that this is the job for her. She plans to chase this dream all the way to Penguin Random House—one of the largest paperback publishers in the world.

“I’d get to read for a job,” said Purgett.

Standing out when in review

To make herself stand out as an applicant, Purgett has started her own literary review.

 “I just started a literary review called The Mark Literary Review, and it’s like Paha but it’s online and it’s open to anyone. That’s been taking up quite a bit of my time; I’m working on the second edition of it right now.”

The first issue came out in November 2018 and has been seen by at least a couple hundred people according to reader analytics, Purgett said.

"If I couldn’t do publishing, I don’t know what I’d do...it’s very competitive to get into Penguin Random House for an internship, so I’m just trying to make myself stand out a little bit more," said Purgett.

If I couldn’t do publishing, I don’t know what I’d do...it’s very competitive to get into Penguin Random House for an internship, so I’m just trying to make myself stand out a little bit more.

Jessica Purgett '20
English & Marketing

The review was made possible in part through Twitter. Purgett said she typically gets 50 to 60 entries.

“If I think it’s good, then I’ll publish it. I have short stories, poetry, and fiction and nonfiction stories in here,” said Purgett.

Purgett says she’s able to maintain the workload by reading submissions as soon as she possibly can.

“I pick the ones that I liked, and then I will email that authors and ask them if their piece is still unpublished elsewhere, because I don’t publish things that have already been published. Then I’ll put it together in a first draft, send that out to the authors, and just make sure there’s no mistakes on it, and then I publish it on my website.”

The Mark Literary Review is still young, but Purgett is running with it with hopes to introduce competitions with cash prizes in the future, though she has to speak with a lawyer before she’s able to do it. The review itself can be found at www.themarkliteraryreview.com and The Mark’s official Twitter handle @LiteraryMark. Works can be submitted to themarkliteraryreview@gmail.com.

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