Ed-it (-verb): to revise or correct, as a manuscript. Ed-i-tor (-noun): a person having managerial and sometimes policy-making responsibility for the editorial part of a publishing firm or of a newspaper, magazine, or other publication. The ed-it-ing proc-ess (-challenge): [see quotes].
1. “This feels like elementary school again, looking through this like, 'How did I miss that?'” - Desiree (intern), looking through “finished” chapters
“I know – welcome to the world of proofreading.” - Marisa (Associate Editor), in response
2. “...and – poof – it becomes an electronic text, but that's not how it happens.” - Marisa
*Collected over a mere ten minutes in the office.
Today in the GTP office – A representative sample of a typical day as a GTP intern:
The day started with uploading the pictures from my chapter in Tourism the International Business. This probably doesn't sound too bad – until you hear the (brief) biography of these pictures:
The pictures were created. The pictures were used. The pictures malfunctioned, causing mass read-errors throughout the textbook. Many an attempt at fixing the problem were made. Finally, one was discovered: only 17 easy steps to a perfect picture! All pictures in entire textbook were replaced. [see quote 2]
Our next task was to review the famous GTP Style Guide as a closing act to finishing up Tourism. This was to refresh our memories as to all of those little things that go into internationally standardizing any GTP chapter. For instance: normally in the US, we would write a doctor's title as “Dr. John,” GTP format would read “Dr John.” Not that we are bad interns, but there were multiple things we all needed reminding of concerning formatting and proofing in regard to GTP. Then again, as Marisa also said: “Copy editing skills will always need improvement.” Looking over the Style Guide was also accompanied by reviews of the Tourism chapters to see what we missed and what we still need work on [see quote 1] – basically proofreading our proofreading, which then gets proofread.
After that, I took care of some non-textbook related business. This included contributing some opinions on formulating a response to an article that ran in The Red & Black (UGA newspaper) about the need for textbooks to go digital (which is obviously a very good opportunity for some publicity). We also contributed to suggestions to further the specifications and clarity of the Style Guide.
Then, finally, I started working on our second book project, Managing for Productivity in the Hospitality Industry. I got through chapter one, remembering to apply all of the formatting and proofreading lessons that I reviewed (I hope), and tomorrow, I will go through chapter two. The first stage is always my favourite part, because there are such tangible results. Once a PDF goes through an OCR conversion, the interns get to work on formatting the text. Re-creating the textbook format using GTP standards is quite satisfying in a nerdy, proofreading-loving way.
The weeks following the initial formatting are a proofreading circus for interns in training. In the first week, each intern takes on an equal number of chapters (usually two or three, depending on the size of the book) and proofreads them on their own. Then the next week, we all, in a sense, switch chapters and re-proofread them. This happens two more times as well, so that we have all essentially looked over all of the chapters [see quote 2] and learned as much as about formatting as humanly possible. These chapters are then complied into a Master Document (which I got to see the workings of today) and looked over by Marisa. After this comes my special job.
My individual project for the GTP internship is publishing the final editions of our textbooks on a self-publishing and print-on-demand website called Lulu.com. As of now we have three books in both colour and black-and-white editions; we even ordered a copy of one. I go through the stages of publishing on Lulu with our final, Master PDF. This includes filling out all the information about the book, uploading the PDF, and creating covers for the books so that anyone can purchase printed copies. There are still some things I need to work out, however, such as how to get our books onto CDs and how to customize our storefront (which is up and running at http://stores.lulu.com/globaltextproject). Overall, I would put it as me being the icing on the textbook cake.
At the end of the, we had our weekly intern meeting at Transmetropolitan (Italian/pizza place downtown). We talked about all the developments that were/are/will be going on, such as ways we can get the word out about GTP, and T-shirts (buy one!), our upcoming projects, and evaluations. We, of course, ate pizza as well, which was a nice ending to a day of interning for The Global Text Project.