LIFE AFTER SHAKESPEARE, CAREERS FOR LIBERAL ARTS MAJORS by Manuel Flores-Esteves (Penguin: $6.95). Undergraduates anxious to succeed have lately been avoiding the liberal arts in favor of more specialized courses. But to at least a few, it must have occurred that many, perhaps most, of the incumbents in the positions to which they aspire lack the very specialized training that is supposed to smooth a newcomer's path. Many of the country's leaders have no more impressive credentials for leadership than what may be constituted by general education, experience and common sense. From a liberal arts starting point, or lower, how did they rise so high? This little book by a professor and counselor at Cal State Los Angeles is neither ya-gotta-believe executive hagiography nor another lap around the track of how to write your resume. There's a bit of that at the end, but 110 of the book's 140 pages are a sensible guide to first steps in no fewer than 30 walks of American life. Flores-Esteves tells you which organizations to contact and in each area about a few basic, who-does-what-where reference books. The areas are: advertising, airline and travel, business management, consulting, consumer protection, cultural organizations, education, environmental protection, finance, foreign affairs organizations in the United States, foundations, fund-raising, government, insurance, international service abroad, labor unions, lobbying, opinion polls and surveys, personnel, politics, public affairs organizations, public relations, publishing, radio-TV-movies, real estate, recreation and leisure, research, sales, social services, and writing. At $6.95., this is less than a lavish gift for the June graduate, but toss it in with whatever else you're giving. It could come in handy.