The blog series “Inside novum” enables our readers to gain insight into the fascinating world and daily business of novum publishing.
Ending up with an actual book requires numerous steps that together form the day-to-day business of a publishing house. It is hardly surprising to find out that smooth production operations are essential to any successful publication. After receiving a manuscript and concluding a contract, as discussed in Part I of our blog series, Part II addressed such issues as blurbs, advertising texts, cover designs and image editing. This time, we have the opportunity to sneak a peek behind the curtain of the copy editing, proofreading and typesetting departments.
Slowly but surely, the final look of the new publication is born. The cover and back of the book have already been designed and the blurb as well as any additional advertising texts lie in wait for the next step in the process: now the text needs to be revised and professionally edited.
Questionnaires enable authors to share their wishes, preferences and remarks with the copy editing, proofreading and typesetting teams in advance. The respective departments will then do everything they can to incorporate the author’s wishes. Discover the various steps in this segment of the production process as outlined just for you by the team of novum publishing.
While graphic designers work on the cover and copywriters draft blurbs and advertising texts, the manuscript is meticulously checked by the proofreading department. In a first step, the text is processed by means of a specifically designed software. The program visualises spelling and grammar errors. After all, there is no such thing as a manuscript without errors. The highlighted passages are then reviewed and corrected by proofreaders.
The complex task of copy editing is certainly the most time-consuming of all steps in the production process. After the manuscript has been proofread and corrected, it needs to undergo another round of thorough reviewing by the editorial department. Copy editors read the entire manuscript page for page, sentence for sentence, and word for word. In the course of this lengthy work step, the department checks the text for any stylistic shortcomings, repetitions or logic errors. As a rule, the editorial department neither changes the style or content of a manuscript on its own, nor does it alter any line breaks or paragraphs set by the author.
Any remarks, comments and suggestions of improvement are documented in writing and presented to the author, who can then decide whether or not to accept the editorial suggestions to the manuscript. The text only moves on to the typesetting department after having been cleared by the author.
This part of the process comprises several work steps, such as the structuring and typesetting of the text, the choice of preferred font for content and headings, the integration of images or drawings, and the incorporation of any other wishes by the author. Once the draft layout of the manuscript is completed, the author receives a proof copy for approval. Only once this final proof is cleared for the press, the book is printed for the very first time. This exciting process will be the subject of Part IV of our “Inside novum” blog series.
Keep writing, keep typing!