Book editor responsibilities
Keep in touch. Maintain regular contact with us as you prepare the book. Let us know how the book is progressing, and inform us of any difficulties as soon as you are able.
Adhere to the submission deadlines, as agreed with us in your Formal memorandum of agreement. We'll work with you to ensure that any deadlines are realistic and achievable. If you are struggling to meet your submission date please contact us as soon as possible.
Adhere to the book length, as agreed with us in your Formal memorandum of agreement. If the book looks to be far shorter or longer than agreed, please contact us as soon as possible.
Invite your chapter authors to contribute to the book. Once you have a finalised list of chapter authors, send this to us so that we can begin preparing Letters of agreement for the principal chapter authors and providing them with instructions for formatting their chapters.
Maintain regular contact with your chapter authors.
Ensure that your chapter authors understand their responsibilities – that is: to deliver their chapters to you by the submission date agreed in their Letter of agreement; to use our guidelines while preparing their chapter; and to seek permissions for the reuse of third-party materials.
Ensure that finished chapters are supplied with wording and scientific content ready for publication.
Give as much information as you can on the marketing support form (sent to you three months before submission) to help us in promoting your book to the best of our ability.
Provide a list of keywords that our picture editors can use to source a cover image (we will begin to design the cover for your book three to four months before the submission date). You can also supply a suggested image.
Write a preface. This should be an overview of the book, providing some context to the book – for example, how the content was developed.
Prepare the manuscript following our guidelines.
Submit the complete and final manuscript to us, with all requested materials, following the instructions we provided.
Collate proof corrections and return them to us in a timely manner.
You should begin contacting potential contributors as soon as possible after we have approved your book proposal, and aim to have a complete author list within two months of signing your formal Memorandum of agreement.
You can use our Sample chapter invitation letter when contacting potential authors.
As soon as all the chapter authors have agreed, you must complete our Author information spreadsheet so we can begin preparing and sending Letters of agreement to all the lead chapter authors, along with chapter formatting instructions.
We'll maintain regular contact with you regarding the progress of chapters. Please consider these a prompt for you to check on contributors’ progress.
We recommend that you contact your contributors once every two months; however, you should increase the frequency as the submission date approaches.
Preparing the book
Detailed information on formatting, as well as a sample chapter and an EndNote file for references, can be found in the general guidelines.
As editor, you must provide a preface for the book. A preface generally comprises an overview of the book, how the book was developed and its unique appeal. It is often followed by thanks and acknowledgments to people who were helpful during the time of writing. One to two pages is usually sufficient.
Table of contents
You must provide a list of the chapter titles – including part/section headings where applicable, together with the names of the contributors to that chapter – in the order that the chapters are to appear in the book.
Optional front matter
You may want to consider including other information at the start of your book, such as a foreword (an introductory piece written by someone other than yourself), dedication, acknowledgements, biographies and/or glossary.
Marketing support form
Around three months before the submission of the manuscript we will send you a Marketing support form.
We rely on information from editors to ensure we are reaching the correct markets for your book, therefore it's beneficial if you can give as much detail and as many suggestions as possible to allow us to promote your title to the best of our ability.
This is also an opportunity for you to update the information that you supplied in your original book proposal form.
Around three to four months before the submission of the manuscript we will ask for image ideas for the book cover.
You should provide a list of key words that our picture editors can use to guide their image search.
You may also submit an image for consideration. The image should be a full colour TIF, EPS or JPEG file, with a minimum resolution 300 dpi at final size, and free of any copyright restrictions. If permissions or acknowledgements are necessary, please ensure you have sent these to us along with the image. Visit our Bookshop to view recent covers of similiar books (for example, other books in the same series) to see how the image will be used.
The use of any suggestions is at our discretion. The cover will then be designed and sent to you for approval.
Estimating book length
Your Formal memorandum of agreement will state how long your book is expected to be. Please use the following as a guide for estimating how long each chapter is:
- Allow 500 words on a page (approximately 50 lines at 10 words per line on average).
- Count the number of figures, schemes, tables etc:
- For figures, allow half a page, or the equivalent of 250 words.
- For schemes, the width of one substituted benzene ring is equivalent to 100 words.
- A single line of mathematics or a chemical equation is equivalent to 30 words.
Submitting the manuscript
Chapter authors will submit their final chapters to you. You are responsible for editing the chapters so that, upon submission to us, the typescripts are ready for publication with respect to wording and content. Please do not send any draft chapters.
It's up to you how many times you return the drafts to the chapter contributors, or if you want to have the chapters externally peer reviewed, as long as this doesn’t delay the final submission date.
You will need to submit to us the following files:
- Title page for the book (including all editor names and contact details)
- Preface and any other optional front matter
- Brief table of contents for the whole book to indicate chapter order and any part/section headings
- Individual folders for each chapter containing the text, image files and permissions and copyright information:
- The chapter document should include (in this order):
- Chapter X and title of chapter (where X is the designated chapter number)*
- Chapter abstract
- Chapter text
- Captions for figures/tables
- Figures should be supplied as separate files for all images (they should not be embedded in a Word file)
- Copyright permissions for images where the chapter author is not the copyright holder for the document (see Copyright & Permissions for further information)
- A completed Chapter submission checklist
Chapter submission checklist
The final and complete manuscript should be submitted to us using our Large File Transfer system. Please contact us to receive your link to use the system.
*Please see general guidelines for information on chapter numbering for books in the Issues in Environmental Science and Technology series
The production process
Once we've received your completed manuscript, and we're satisfied that everything has been submitted in accordance with our guidelines, the manuscript will go through the following production processes.
|Typesetting and proof production
|Proof correction by contributors
|Proof collation and revision by editor
|Revision of proofs
|Total publication time
||20–25 (approx. five months)
Proofs will be ready typically within two to three months of submission.
You will be responsible for collating the proof corrections from the chapter authors. A complete set of proofs will be made available for you to download, while the lead chapter author will be emailed a set of PDF proofs accompanied by complete instructions on when and where to return them. He or she will email an annotated PDF (using Adobe’s commenting tools) to you within one week of receipt. Please contact the contributors directly if you have not received the PDF in this time.
You should then collate the proofs into one master set, together with any of your own additional comments, using the Adobe commenting tools. Please pay particular attention to the front matter as this will not be seen by the contributors.
Do not change the text within the PDF file or send a revised Word document.
Please note that the proofing stage is to correct typographical errors. We will correct simple errors in the original typescript but we will not accept large insertions or major revision of the text.
Please return one master set of corrections within three weeks of proof issue. It is essential that the book is published as promptly as possible, so please make sure that all your contributors return their proof corrections on time.
The index will be created by us. If you wish to supply keywords for the indexer please include a separate list when you submit the chapters.
The eBook version of the volume will be published approximately two weeks in advance of the print edition. Please note that popular science books and textbooks do not have eBook versions.
At this time we will contact you to confirm your address for delivery of complimentary copies of the book, as given in your Formal memorandum of agreement. Complimentary copies will be sent shortly after the print version has been published.
One copy of the book will also be sent to each lead chapter author.