Bring your lunch and join us virtually to learn more about careers in book publishing.
Terry Deal is currently the Assistant Director of Production Editorial at Penguin Random House and a Penn State graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in English. Terry has had extensive experience as an editor working in a variety of organizations within the industry. Those include Penguin Random House, McGraw-Hill, Hearst Magazines, Oxford University Press and more.
Terry Deal is the assistant director of production editorial at the Random House Publishing Group (a division of Penguin Random House), a freelancer copy editor and proofreader, and an adjunct faculty member at NYU’s School of Professional Studies. An Italian-Irish mutt, Terry was born in Philadelphia and grew up in Drexel Hill, Pennsylvania. She cried for her first book, a collection of fairy tales, at age six and thus began her fascination with storytelling and the written word. She defected from the College of Agriculture in the spring of her freshman year at Penn State and became an utterly undistinguished English major. Without substantive experience in just about everything and no publishing industry acumen or connections, Terry made unsuccessful attempts at getting entry-level positions at TV Guide, Ladies Home Journal, and Rodale Books, to name a few of her rejecters in the pre-Internet ’90s. She began her career as an administrative/editorial assistant at a five-person publisher of a monthly newspaper for doctors in Narberth, Pennsylvania, and switched jobs within the magazine and book publishing worlds every few years until she was hired—after interviewing four times over two years—as a senior production editor at the tiny but mighty Crown Publishing Group, a now-defunct division of Penguin Random House. Her work consists of managing the editorial process from the moment a manuscript is ready for copyediting to the point the book is queued up to be printed. For ten years she worked on a diverse list of books, including popular and literary fiction, memoir, business, current affairs, self-help, interior design, and cookbooks. When Crown was absorbed into the Random House Publishing Group in late 2018, Terry became part of a group that works exclusively on Clarkson Potter, Harmony, and Rodale imprints, where she is assigned to twenty-five titles per year, covering cooking, wine and cocktails, baking, health and wellness, pop culture, interior design, memoir, self-help, and even coloring books and puzzles. Authors she and her freelancers have saved from making tragic mistakes include Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Sheri Fink; writer, actress, and producer Mindy Kaling; American entrepreneur Eric Ries; poet, actress, and wearer of traveling pants Amber Tamblyn; MSNBC’s Chris Hayes; homekeeping and lifestyle legend Martha Stewart; and the Barefoot Contessa herself, Ina Garten.
As a freelance copy editor and proofreader, Terry has worked on way too many Swedish crime novels. She teaches the course “Editorial Fundamentals” at NYU’s School of Professional Studies, MS in Publishing program.
First favorite novel: Charlotte’s Web, E. B. White
First favorite memoir: Dancing on My Grave, by Gelsey Kirkland
Latest favorite nonfiction: Hidden Valley Road, by Robert Kolker
Latest favorite fiction: Anything by Lauren Groff
Zoom link available in Nittany Lion Careers. Penn State Zoom Log-in required to access the workshop.