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The editorial process

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It is the publisher who directs the entire production process of a book and, often, who also establishes the financial program integrating the expected costs and the expected profits, as in any business. The editorial manager must call on collaborators with various specialties who will make it possible to transform “the project into an object” and “the prototype into a product”. The book production-marketing process generally includes three main axes: editorial, technical and commercial.

Among the manuscripts offered to him, the previously published works that he wishes to republish, or works translated from other languages, the publisher chooses the works that correspond to the editorial line of his collection(s), or he orders them from authors of his choice.

When the manuscript is accepted for publication, the publisher enters into a publishing contract with the author. This is called publication on account of publisher. It does not give rise to any payment of money from the author; it is therefore the publisher who bears most of the financial risk. The publisher can also pay an advance to the author, which will represent an advance on the royalties that the latter will receive on the sales of the book. This advance is usually “refundable”, i.e. the author will only receive money from the publisher again once the advance has been “repaid” by the copyright . In the event of a commercial failure, publishing contracts usually provide that the advances remain with the author.

When the author submits his manuscript to the publisher for a first reading, the latter may ask the author to rewrite all or part of his work. The editor can also make changes themselves and submit them to the author for approval. Then the text goes to the correction, which is most often entrusted to employees outside the publishing house. The proofreader points out grammar, syntax and spelling errors in the text. At this stage, it is a question of preparing the copy which will allow the production of proofs.

(Includes texts from Wikipedia translated and adapted by Nicolae Sfetcu)


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