Authors, you are not alone

August 12, 2010

I was surprised by Katharine Reeve's assertion that academic authors are "left to their own devices" during the writing process, unlike their fiction-writing counterparts ("Bound for glory", 5 August). This may be true of more "traditional" publishers (where editorial assistants are still called "Emily"!), but Reeve seems unaware of the increasingly important position of development editor in many British publishers.

Development editors assiduously support authors throughout the writing process. They carry out initial market research for the book, thereafter reading every word and meticulously coaching authors on writing style. On top of this, any good development editor will have the whole manuscript peer-reviewed in batches as the text is written.

These editors provide constant encouragement and advice, so the picture need not be as gloomy and lonely as Reeve suggests.

Stuart Hay, Saffron Walden.

You've reached your article limit.

Register to continue

Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:

  • Sign up for the editor's highlights
  • Receive World University Rankings news first
  • Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
  • Participate in reader discussions and post comments

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Most Commented

James Fryer illustration (27 July 2017)

It is not Luddism to be cautious about destroying an academic publishing industry that has served us well, says Marilyn Deegan

Hand squeezing stress ball
Working 55 hours per week, the loss of research periods, slashed pensions, increased bureaucracy, tiny budgets and declining standards have finally forced Michael Edwards out
Jeffrey Beall, associate professor and librarian at the University of Colorado Denver

Creator of controversial predatory journals blacklist says some peers are failing to warn of dangers of disreputable publishers

Kayaker and jet skiiers

Nazima Kadir’s social circle reveals a range of alternative careers for would-be scholars, and often with better rewards than academia

hole in ground

‘Drastic action’ required to fix multibillion-pound shortfall in Universities Superannuation Scheme, expert warns