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The Spare Room Project

The Spare Room Project

The London-centric reality of publishing acts as a major barrier to aspirant publishers from outside of the capital. In response to this, James Spackman (publisher and consultant for Pursuit Agency) with the support of the Publishers Association set up The Spare Room Project. 

Since 2016, we have been matching interns from outside of London with publishers who can offer a spare room. Not only is it a great opportunity for mentorship but it also means that young people without the means to pay for expensive temporary accommodation can take up opportunities in the city.

Take a look at the blogs below to hear from interns and hosts and read our FAQ. If you have a spare room you can offer, or if you're in need of one, just email James Spackman.

“I am delighted to accommodate a bright young student in our spare room over the summer. It is little or no effort, it will be great to have somebody learning about publishing staying with us, and what a great way of opening up our London-centric trade to people coming from elsewhere."

Andrew Franklin, founder and MD of Profile Books and first publisher to host a Spare Roomer


  • Spare Room Project: Hamza Jahanzeb Hamza Jahanzeb.jpgI am very grateful for the Spare Room Project, as it allowed me to partake in internships I would not have had the chance to complete otherwise. This is due to me being based in Lancashire, and most publishing internships are based in London. 15 September 2017
  • Spare Room Project: Rachel Wade Rachel Wade.jpgThe Spare Room Project is a simple, community-based idea to help with publishers' diversity problem – and also a way for people further on in their career to give something back. So: everyone wins! 02 October 2017
  • Spare Room Project: Juliet Peacock Spare Room Project Juliet Peacock.jpegOn a rather rainy February day I got the email which I had been hoping for since January: the notification that my application for work experience had been successful. 09 October 2017
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Q: I’m a publisher in London. How do I pledge a room?

A: Email to get involved. He’ll take it from there.

Q: Do I have to provide work experience as well? 

A: NO! The aspirant publisher should arrange their own placement. Please let James know if you want to offer work experience as well, but it’s not essential.

Q: Do I have to feed them?

A: You can if you like, but there’s no obligation. 

Q: I can only do particular dates, is that ok?

A: Yes, James will work with whatever you can offer. 

Q: I have small children, yappy dogs, loud neighbours, live in zone 6, live on a houseboat ... will anyone want to come to stay?? 

A: So far yes! The scheme has matched up interns with hosts in all sorts of living arrangements.