An acronym for desktop publishing, which involves creating publications on computer by combining text and images through the use of publishing and graphics software.
Book design and stylesheet creation
This involves designing the basic style or ‘personality’ of the book. It includes choosing margin widths, font styles and sizes, word and letter spacing, how the contents and start of new chapters should look, and how other elements should be displayed, such as information boxes, glossaries, footnotes, and so on. Finally, it involves programming these styles so that the text can be flowed in and consistently formatted.
Formatting the raw text of the book according to the book design spec and preset style sheets.
A process whereby the content of the book is checked so that it is grammatically correct and structurally sound (i.e., makes sense and flows well). The work of the editor includes preserving the author's voice, ensuring that the essence of the work emerges, and eliminating unnecessary detail. Standard copy editing like this is fairly inexpensive, however, the more complex an edit, the more expensive it becomes. Complexity can be caused by poor writing skills or subject matter that is highly specialized, for instance Most of the editing happens before the book goes for setting, but the editor is also responsible for checking the proofs after setting to ensure that instructions have been carried out and that there are no further errors. Very often a 'second-eye' proofread is done by a second editor who is unfamiliar with the book.
Publishing a book that will sell is not an exact science. However, having your manuscript evaluated means that a professional in the business of books will go through your work to see whether it would have reader appeal. Depending on the scope of the evaluation, the evaluator will then send you their informed opinion and a review. Hopefully the review will contain useful advice on improving your manuscript, if it needs it. Some publishers ask you to send the first three chapters and an outline of the book, whereas others ask for the entire manuscript.
Checking printed pages of the made-up book to ensure that the text, images and layout are correct. There can be a number of proofs, known as first page proofs, second page proofs, and master set, which means that the proofs have been signed off and the book is ready to go to print. The author and the editor are given proofs to check – the author is responsible for the accuracy and completeness of the content, whereas the editor is responsible for the layout, style, grammar, typography and other features such as the table of contents, references, permissions, and the index.
This involves converting the electronic data of the computer file into 'film' that the printer uses to make printing plates. With new technology, some printers no longer need film – they can print straight from disk (called ‘disk-to-plate’) which saves time and money.
As the term implies, this involves the actual printing of the book onto paper. This can be done using either litho printing or digital printing. The minimum print quantity for litho printing is generally 1000 units or more, whereas digital printing has become very economical for quantities of less than 1000. With digital printing, you can print as few as one copy of a book! (See print-on-demand) For more information on the differences between litho and digital printing, refer to the “Printing and binding” section of this website.
This refers to the process of folding the printed flat sheets, and then cutting, stitching and glueing them into their covers to create a book.