jeudi 14 décembre 2006


An amount of royalties paid to a writer before the product is released.
A specialist sales person trusted by publishers to filter out bad or
uncommercial writing. Agents will handle all contractual negotiations,
chase royalty payments and take a percentage of the author’s income
for their troubles.
AI sheet
Advance Information sheet. A single page document produced by
publishers to alert the trade to a forthcoming title.
Back list
Titles already in print by a particular publisher. These should be
studied, together with their front list, before submitting proposals to
The short description of a book that is usually printed on the back
cover or in the jacket sleeve.
This refers to the outer layer of paperback books only. Hardbacks have
A stage in the life of a manuscript. The first draft is the first complete
(or almost complete) version of the manuscript. Early drafts are
sometimes called rough drafts because they’re not fully developed or
polished. A final draft occurs many drafts later when the work is
deemed to be finished. Differences between drafts can vary from just
a few spelling corrections to a fundamental rewrite of the entire body
of the text.
A version of a book designed to be sold as an electronic download
from the Internet.
Front list
The list of books a publisher is planning to launch in the coming year
or so.
International Standard Book Number. This identifies every edition
of every book to enable efficient ordering and stock control in the
The loose paper jacket that wraps around some hardback books.
Literally means a handwritten book, but the word is in general use
today to mean any unpublished work whether typed or in a word
processed format.
A suggestion of a book idea made by an author to a publisher. Similar
to a submission, but sometimes relating to a book not yet in existence.
Carefully reading a manuscript to look for errors.
A payment made to an author based on sales quantity or sales income.
Self publishing
When an author arranges and pays for the publication of their own
book, either in print or on the Internet, and in effect becomes a
publisher in their own right.
Slush pile
The pile of book proposals, samples and manuscripts that sits on an
editor’s desk. Usually it refers to unsolicited manuscripts which hang
around for longer because they are a lower priority than submissions
that the publisher has actually asked to see.
A bookshop shelf can display books either face-out with the covers
showing, or spine-on, where only the spines are visible.
Typically a covering letter, synopsis and a couple of sample chapters
submitted to a publisher.
A summary of a book or other written work, usually not much more
than a page in length. Typically a book chapter would be summarised
in no more than one paragraph in the synopsis.
Refers to an unpublished book in typed form, although usually
synonymous with ‘manuscript’.
Vanity publishing
When an author pays a publishing company to publish their book.

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