7 Useful Publishing Stages for Publishers


A. Acquisition Stage


This is the stage where the publisher hunts for the manuscripts from the authors and the authors approach the publishers to publish his/her works.

There are main two steps in acquiring manuscripts from the publisher.

  1. Steps to Acquiring Solicited Manuscripts
  2. Steps to Acquiring Unsolicited Manuscripts

1. Steps to Acquiring Solicited Manuscripts

This occurs when the publisher hunts for competent and seasoned authors to write manuscripts on different subjects.

The authors may be professors, educators, philosophers, teachers, businessmen, etc.

Here, the publisher will invite the writers and one of the writers will be the lead author. The publisher or the lead author will assign aspects of the subject to each author.

After the completion of writing, days will be fixed where all authors will be met for work critique. This is to make sure that individual writing complies with the terms of originality, uniformity, consistency, and policy of the company.

The publisher sponsors the project and pays the authors the royalties based on the agreed percentage.

2. Steps to Acquiring Unsolicited Manuscripts

This occurs when the writer comes to the publisher himself/herself with manuscripts to seek the opinion of the publisher to publish.

The author may prefer to sponsor the project or if the publisher finds the manuscript superb, the company may seek the opinion of the writer to sponsor the project and pay royalties to the writer.

B. Assessment Stage

Assessment is a process in which a judgment is made about a person or a thing/situation.

The manuscript assessment is to judge whether the manuscript is publishable or not, considering many criteria. The manuscripts must pass through this stage to ascertain originality, correctness, completeness, and curriculum and company policy compliance.

During the assessment, the assessor(s) will pay careful attention to every nook and cranny of the manuscript, starting from the title, name(s) of the author, the content of the manuscript, arrangement, target audience, styles, dictions, language, bias, contributions to the knowledge, etc.

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The report of the assessor will reflect a synopsis/summary of the manuscript, and observations of the assessor in terms of the strengths and weaknesses of the manuscript.

After the assessor has pointed out the strengths and weaknesses, the next step is to decide on the manuscript.

The decision of the assessor lies in three aspects: acceptance for publication, reworking, or rejection. Reworking is pointing out all the sensitive weaknesses of the author and reworking them.

Rejection may occur as a result of many things. The manuscript may not fall into the company’s publishing schedule at that time; the manuscript may be badly written; the manuscript may include portions that are against the policy of the company and the like.

C. Editing Stage

According to Longman of Contemporary English, editing is an act of preparing a book for printing by removing mistakes or parts that are not acceptable.

In book publishing, the editor decides what to include and in what order to include it. There are different types of editing that the editor does.

Some of the editing types are copy editing, content editing, structural editing, substantive editing, technical editing, stylistic editing, etc. All these editing types will be published in the next post.

The editor will arrange and make every improvement to the manuscript and make sure that the manuscript is good to read.

The editor takes care of grammar, spelling, punctuation, and words, creating spaces for pictures, images, and illustrations together with the illustrators and designers.

He will write the illustration briefs, check the copyright page and imprint page, and all front-matter pages to ensure that the manuscript is ready for design and formatting.

D. Formatting, Design, and Typesetting Stage

The next stage is for a manuscript to go for design where it will be refined to look great. The designer format and design according to the page, font, and picture/image insertion.

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This is where the raw material (manuscript) will turn into a book. Also, the designer makes a professionally relevant and beautiful cover for the book.

E. Proofreading Stage

After the formatting and design, the text and content will be made available for proofreading to ensure there are no hidden errors that were not caught during the editing process.

The copy will be reviewed by a professional proofreader, who will check for consistency, clarity, and style in the text, as well as for any typesetting errors.

The proof may be done once or twice, depending on the volume and complexities of the manuscript and how it is well-edited.

F. Pre-Press and Printing Stage

The pre-press is an arrangement done after proofreading by the production unit before finally going to the press for printing.

When the work is at the printing, care must be taken to make sure that production, trimming and cutting, binding, and packaging are of quality.

If not, the work of professionals that have worked on the project will be in vain. This is the final stage of the publishing process.

G. Sales, Marketing, and Publicity Stage

This process is to make sure that the book ends up in front of readers. The readers are end-users of the book. Marketers or sales representatives move to schools, bookstores, ministries, and individuals to sell the books.

The publisher uses different strategies to present their books to the readers. Some companies write proposals to governments to secure bulk orders.

They attended book launches, book reviews, book fairs, etc. where they can seize the opportunity to present their copies of books for reviews and publicity.

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