As part of our series on Journals Publishing, we spoke with three team members devoted to the production of journals. The team has worked on 178 journal issues in the past year, which translates to 2,800 articles and reviews and over 29,300 pages of content. These coordinators manage a journal issue’s workflow and requirements—which often differ by journal—and keep issues on time, which involves anticipating problems and addressing any roadblocks that might come up. The work is a labor of love; according to team member Rebekah Kati, “We really take pride in how our journals look and the amount of detail that goes into them.”
The Process: A Typical Production Workflow
The People: A Look at a few Production Team Members
Terri Fizer, Assistant Production Manager
“I really love seeing a new journal have a successful launch, when we have the print copy and the online version. I think TSQ [Transgender Studies Quarterly] and JCL [Journal of Chinese Literature and Culture] were big ones for me. There wasn’t a journal out there like TSQ. It was really important and exciting to reach an audience that we knew was there for a journal that didn’t exist and we were the publisher to get it out there.” – Terri
Terri has been at the Press since 2000 when she started as an assistant. She became a production coordinator, and is now the Assistant Production Manager, supervising seven people. Her job includes budgeting, liaising with and reviewing quotes from vendors, serving on launch committees for new journals, maintaining and updating workflows, and organizing permissions information.
Rebekah Kati, Digital Publishing Technologist and Production Coordinator
“I was really excited to be the production coordinator for the Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies when it came to Duke University Press and to see it in print. It was exciting to see [Journal Design Manager] Sue’s beautiful design in print in physical form. This is one of the first jobs I’ve had where I can see the end result of a project and hold it in my hand. That’s very cool.” – Rebekah
Rebekah started at the Press in 2013 and holds a dual position which includes managing digital projects like the Carlyle Letters Online and currently is serving as the production coordinator for journals including EASTS, Ethnohistory, differences, the Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies, and Pedagogy. In her digital role, she works with our hosting partner, HighWire Press, to get our journals online. She is currently focusing on an archive project to better organize print and online content and also handles special projects such as launches and sending our metadata to our content hosts.
“The parts of my job that I enjoy most are solving problems and figuring out how to make the user experience better for our editorial offices and internal staff. I love to help editorial offices solve challenging issues, especially those related to their online content. Many of the digital projects I work on can take close to a year to complete. So, it’s always exciting to see the final culmination of these such as the launch of a new journal website.” – Bendte
Bendte came to the Press in 2006 as a production coordinator. Now in the role of a digital publishing technologist, she works closely with many of our vendors and is our lead point person for Title Management, a workflow management system for books and journals. The administration of such a large system is time intensive, and she serves as an expert, troubleshooting any problems that come up. Bendte currently coordinates the production of five journals including American Literature, American Speech (and it’s annual supplement, Publication of the American Dialect Society), French Historical Studies, and Mediterranean Quarterly. Additionally, Bendte runs an XML working group meeting, focuses on launches and transitions of our journals to an XML workflow, and is currently working on several retrodigitization projects to get back content on our HighWire page, including all issues of the Publication of the American Dialect Society.
Do you have questions for our production team? Let us know in the comments and we’ll get their input. Interested in the process of publishing journals? Learn more from our Journals Publishing Series.