University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Publication Project Process

A typical print publication involves all or most of the following steps.

Initial Planning Meeting

When you contact the department for a publication or web project, a preliminary meeting is scheduled so you (the client) can meet with the project manager, graphic designer, writer/editor and photographer (when appropriate) to discuss the project—its purpose, its audience, its tone, time frame, etc.,—and begin to formulate an editorial and design concept and production schedule to fit the project’s needs. Also, if your text is already written, bring a printed copy to the initial meeting and send us an electronic copy (preferably Microsoft Word). Also bring examples of similar publications you like and any images you want to include.

Production

Following the initial meeting we will create a production plan and schedule. If photographs are necessary, they will be scheduled with the photographer. The project manager will follow the progress of the project.

Writing/Editing

An editor will review text provided to determine if it is appropriate for the intended audience and also for editorial style, grammar, punctuation, and consistency. If writing is needed, the writer assigned to the project will prepare a draft based on discussions in the initial meeting and additional consultation with the client. You will have the opportunity to review the draft and provide feedback and suggested revisions.

Graphic Design

We will work with you to develop initial concept(s) before actual design work begins. Once you approve the concepts and final text a graphic designer will create your publication based on the information and ideas generated in the initial meeting and your feedback from the design concepts.

Page Proofs

We will later present page proofs that have all of the artwork and text in place for your review and approval. If needed, revised proofs are generated (this process can repeat several times). Upon approval of the final design, University Relations Communications will obtain prices for printing, and the graphic designer will prepare the project for the printer.

Print Production

The graphic designer coordinates production of the project with the printer. Printer’s proofs are provided by the printer and carefully checked by the graphic designer, editor and client. As the client, you are responsible for the final review of the printer proofs. Proofs are returned to the printer, who completes and delivers the project.

The flowchart below depicts the typical publication process.

Publication Process Flowchart

*Project priority will be determined in consultation with school or college communications directors.