Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Peachtree Spotlight: Vicky Holifield

We have our second Peachtree Spotlight today! These spotlights are an opportunity for everyone to get to know all the amazing people who work on the inside and behind the scenes at Peachtree. In case you missed it, two weeks ago we heard from Courtney Hood—make sure to check out that post!

Today, our senior editor Vicky Holifield is in the spotlight. She has been a huge part of making Peachtree the company it is today, and we're excited to share a little more about her.


Tell us about your history with Peachtree.

I have been working at Peachtree for a little over twenty five years. I began as what you might call an office assistant, working part-time in various departments, and now I am a senior editor. I’ve been a copy editor or editor for more than twenty years. My first career was in teaching; I taught French to junior high and high school students for several years before retiring to raise a family. Not long after Margaret Quinlin bought Peachtree Publishers in 1990, a mutual friend introduced me to her. At the time, my children were in college and I was looking for an interesting job. When I learned that Peachtree needed some part-time workers, I applied and joined the company in January 1991.

What are your top three favorite books, any genre?

I have lots of favorites, but these three spring to mind immediately as books I would happily reread
once a year:
Children’s books—Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Nonfiction—Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard
Fiction—just about any novel by Charles Dickens

If you could be a literary character for a day, who would you be?

As long as I knew it was only for one day, it would be fascinating to be Robinson Crusoe, surviving by his own wits and skills on that remote island.

Who is your hero or role model and why?

I deeply respect and admire all those women out there who manage to excel in their chosen career, raise a family, and remain gracious and witty through it all. Of course I don’t know her personally, but maybe someone like Tina Fey?

What is your favorite thing about working at Peachtree?

Without a doubt, the best thing about being at Peachtree Publishers is working with such an amazing array of talented colleagues, authors, and artists.

In your position, what do you consider to be your secret weapons?

Patience, a love of language, and a pretty good sense of humor.

Do you have any big interests or hobbies that you focus on outside of work?

During my first two years of college I was an art major, and I continued my studio courses until graduation. Over the years I have spent a lot of time painting and drawing, including doing the botanical illustrations for several of Peachtree’s hiking books. I still love to draw.

If, in an alternate reality, you were to have gone a completely different career route, what would you have done?

From time to time I have wondered what it would have been like to study with one of the top botanical artists of the day, someone like Anne Ophelia Dowden, for example, and then to follow in her footsteps, creating beautiful botanical studies. To make my fantasy even more exciting, perhaps I would have also liked to be one of those pioneer botanist/explorers who hiked around in newly discovered territories drawing and cataloguing the exotic plants of the area.


Feel free to write any questions or comments for Vicky below!

3 comments:

  1. Lovely to learn more about you, Vicky. Your fantasy career route sounds positively magical (especially since large mosquitoes were not mentioned.) I also think being able to enjoy our hobbies as hobbies without all the weight of a job makes life a little richer.

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    1. Thanks for your response. I assumed that since this was a fantasy, I could just pretend that I was impervious to things like mosquitoes and poison ivy!

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  2. Hi Vicky, I was seaching for information about Peachtree and saw this spotlight about you. You sound like such a lovely, well rounded person. I hope we get the opportunity to speak on the phone one of these days. I didn't know your background when Fred Bowen introduced me to you. I am the author of Let's Play at the Playground. I have been been waiting to hear back from you to find out if Peachtree will consider extending my Let's Play series of children's books. I am guessing you may have been on holiday. I was just away with my family and a Kindergarten teacher saw my first book. Myra O'Neill teaches at Kitty Hawk Elementary School. Myra said, "Every preschool and elementary school in America should have a copy of my book." Myra went on to say, "A book showing real children playing will inspire children to play." I look forward to speaking with you Vicky. For people who love to play and encourage others to play visit www.letsplayamerica.org.

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Leave us a comment and make sure to include an email address so we can contact you if you win a giveaway! Happy Reading!