by Tyler M. Carey, Chief Revenue Officer
It seems for the last several years that visits to our partners’ operations in New England and the Beltway tend to land in October. Perhaps that’s because it’s this time of year when our clients have taken a post-Summer breath and are ready to begin talking about the editorial and production phases of their list for the upcoming year. Or perhaps it’s because Key Accounts Manager Bill Foley and I like to try to get these visits in before the inevitable winter weather begins snarling up flight itineraries, road trips, and the like. Either way, it has been a productive few weeks meeting with our academic, legal, university press, policy group, and trade partners from Boston to New York to DC. What follows are some key topics that were hit upon during these trips – some of which may apply to you more than others, but all of which raise the recurring topic in these blog pages of tailoring specific solutions to each partner’s needs.
- Alternate workflows for different product types – This came up during meetings with legal publishers and policy groups in DC and the Beltway, university press clients up and down the coast, and other publishers throughout the Northeast corridor. Over the years, Westchester has become associated with handling specific imprints or product lines for some of our clients, but it’s become apparent to them that we are able to help in other ways. For some legal publishers, for instance, we may be more associated with helping them on their treatises, where for others we’re their go-to resource for statutory titles. Likewise, some policy groups think of us as ‘book people’, while others send us all of their working papers to edit on tight turnarounds. This is why we believe in having periodic reviews with our clients, so we can share ways we are helping your peers, which can often lead to resolving a similar challenge you’re having with books or other publications not currently assigned to Westchester. Talk with your Westchester rep about the areas where you’re experiencing challenges with books or other types of publications not currently assigned to Westchester, and let’s see if we can provide you with an affordable alternative to managing an army of freelance resources to get your publications to press.
- Changing modes of trade publishing – Interestingly, after decades (five of them to be precise) of being the go-to vendor for trade publishers on their typesetting needs, we increasingly find ourselves being called upon to help copyedit and project manage trade titles as well. Certainly, our editorial operation, which has been around for over 20 years, has handled many key trade titles for clients over the years, but that has usually been during peak windows when trade publishers needed help on overflow titles. More and more, though, we find trade publishers are giving serious consideration to outsourcing project management, copyediting, and production for entire imprints, to better free up their in-house staff to work on key or embargoed titles or avoid the time sink of managing a pool of freelance copyeditors with specific subject matter expertise. During the course of these early Autumn visits, several trade houses made moves to start outsourcing specific imprints to Westchester for editorial and production packaging. We’re proud of the teams we have built over the years to support this need and are happy to talk with you about editing your fiction or trade titles, if that is a growing need.
- Quality matters – Lastly, one of the highlights of our October road trips was visiting the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy and University of Pennsylvania’s book launch for the revised version of Design with Nature, called Design with Nature Now. Editor Frederick ‘Fritz’ Steiner and contributors led presentations at Cambridge’s Lincoln Institute of Land Policy about key projects covered in the book, as well as just the undertaking of revising an industry-standard title to address changing needs in landscape architecture to better address needs around climate change, new approaches to landscape architecture, and more. The highlight of the evening for Westchester was the kudos and thanks the editors gave to Westchester’s own Susan Baker for her and Production Editor Deborah Grahame-Smith’s efforts working with Lincoln’s and Penn’s teams of writers, editors, and designers on editing and typesetting the book. The emphasis by our client on quality – and the thanks to our staff for their efforts to ensure a sustainable, durable new edition of an academic classic – were greatly appreciated and representative of why we do what we do.
I look forward to any thoughts the above may prompt for you about the publications you currently send to Westchester, or areas where we could help you that we currently do not. Please reach out to me or your account rep to discuss your changing needs for support on your books, papers, and other publications, so that Westchester can help to prescribe possible solutions to help you continue to keep your publications on schedule and below budget.