Wednesday, November 18, 2009


The following is a summary of the production process in commercial publishing:

  • Manuscript – this may be an unsolicited manuscript sent ‘on spec’ to a publishing house, or a manuscript sent by a literary agent, or a book or publication commissioned by the publisher

  • Editing – a copy editor edits and marks up the manuscript

  • Design – a designer commissions illustrations, designs the text, sizes and places the illustrations, and designs the cover

  • Typesetting – a typesetter or desktop publisher sets the text and non-text material according to the editor’s and designer’s mark-up

  • Galley Proofs – the typesetter provides galley proofs (proofs of the typeset text before they are divided into pages); the editor, author and proof reader check the galleys for errors

  • Page Proofs – the corrected galleys are pasted up into pages by the designer, or laid out using desktop publishing software

  • Index – the author or indexer prepares the index from the final page proofs

  • Dyelines – the printer films the pages and sends a set of dyelines to the editor and designer for checking

  • Color Proofs – the designer checks and corrects the color separations
  • Advance Copies – these are provided for publicity and review purposes; the editor checks for any significant printing errors.

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