Proposals          Submissions          Contents          Illustrations          Peer Review          Production

Proposals

The North Carolina Studies in the Romance Languages and Literatures is always looking for prospective manuscripts that fit its publication profile, which is quite broad (see About NCSRLL). However, given the limited number of books published each year, the Editorial Board requires that authors first submit a proposal describing the purpose of the manuscript (what problem it seeks to solve, how it differs from other books, why it should matter to the reader); its approach (on what criticism or critical theory it is based, if any), and its audience (general, graduate students, specialists in one or more fields). The proposal should be accompanied by 1) a Table of Contents, 2) an Introduction, 3) a sample chapter, and 4) the vita of the writer. Authors should also note whether the manuscript is completed or, if it is not finished, give its anticipated date of completion. NCSRLL cannot be responsible for any unsolicited manuscripts.

Proposals should be submitted via email to: romlpub@unc.edu.
The Publication Board meets once every 1-2 months to determine the projects it would like to consider.

Submissions

If the proposal is accepted, the author will be invited to submit the full manuscript. Once the completed manuscript arrives, the Board will conduct a preliminary assessment, then send the work to two scholars who are experts in the field for peer review. They are charged with commenting on the manuscript’s potential, assessing its need for a larger audience, and suggesting revisions. To facilitate this review, authors should pay special attention to the following details:

  • Electronic Copy: The electronic file must be in PC- and Microsoft Word-compatible format, and should be clearly labeled with the name of the author, the date, and an abbreviated version of the manuscript’s title. The file must use Word’s <<Normal Style>> feature throughout the text and avoid any fancy formatting or automatic hyphenation. Finally, authors should make sure that there is no hidden text in the electronic file and that the file sent is a simple .doc and not .docx file.
  • Page Size and Numbering: Limit each page of the manuscript to about 250-300 words in 12-point font with margins of at least one inch all around. The pages should be consecutively numbered, with front matter in lowercase Roman numerals (i, ii, iii…) and the text in Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3…). No page should be submitted unnumbered, and no number should be used twice. NCSRLL will later remove the numbers from the pages that do not carry them (see below, “Contents”).
  • Type, Formatting, and Hyphenation: Use the same typeface throughout their manuscript (preferably Times New Roman), and make sure that text, notes, quotations, captions, and bibliography are double-spaced and not automatically hyphenated or justified.
  • Spelling: Run your word processor’s spell-checking program before sending the final manuscript, never doing a global change. Authors should also verify all quotations, make sure that notation format is consistently applied, and see that the use of proper names follows a consistent pattern and format (MLA). Double-check the accentuation of any foreign language quote.
  • Consistency in Spelling: Use the English or the foreign language version of a name consistently throughout the manuscript. Do not mix both forms (for example, choose to utilize “Ferdinand” or “Fernando”). Use either the American or English spelling conventions throughout, but do not use both (for example, select either “honor” or “honour” as your preferred choice).
  • Paragraphs and Block Quotes: Double-space block quotes (usually more than five lines in length), with an extra line of space above and below to set them off. Authors should not use tab stops or spaces to give an indented appearance to a block quote or to the bibliography, but rather let Microsoft Word provide the indentation by setting the appropriate margins. A hard return should only be inserted at the end of a paragraph or a line of verse.
  • Footnotes: Double-space and print the notes themselves as footnotes, using Microsoft Word’s insert notes feature. They should be numbered sequentially from 1 to the end using Arabic numerals placed slightly above the line without further embellishment (i.e., no parentheses, periods, brackets, or slashes). The numbers should almost always follow the sentence or passage they note. If the passage is a block quotation, the reference number should come at the end of the quotation, and not at the end of the text that introduces the quotation. NCSRLL prefers footnotes over endnotes.
  • Bibliography: Adhere to MLA bibliographical format. Authors should make sure that they have included the name of the publisher in all book bibliographical citations, and that all abbreviated titles of journals have been expanded.
  • MLA Style: Follow MLA style (8th edition) if the manuscript is in English. Since NCSRLL also accepts manuscripts written in any Romance language, and there is a wide variation of styles used, we ask authors of such projects to either use MLA style or adhere to a consistent style throughout. In the latter case, writers in a foreign language should let NCSRLL know what stylistic norms they are employing at the time the manuscript is submitted for peer review. Authors should use only one space after a period. Search the manuscript for “<<space, space>>” (hitting the space bar twice in the search field) to delete one “<<space>>” as necessary. Authors should make sure that all abbreviations are expanded.

Contents

NCSRLL requires that manuscripts include all of the material that will be printed at the time of their submission. The manuscript should paginate the front matter with lower case Roman numerals and reserve Arabic numerals for the rest of the text. Every manuscript page should be numbered, although some of these numbers will later be deleted from the printed copy, since we do not show the number on an initial chapter page:

Front Matter

  1. Title page (page number will not show in printed copy)
  2. Library of Congress ISBN (page number will not show in printed copy; ISBN number later provided by us)
  3. Dedication (if any; page number will not show in printed copy)
  4. Table of Contents
  5. List of Illustrations (if any)
  6. List of Tables (if any)

Body

  1. Preface (w/without acknowledgments)
  2. Introduction
  3. Text of Chapters I, II, III …
  4. Conclusion

Back Matter

  1. Appendices (if any)
  2. Bibliography
  3. Index (created after the first proofs are set)

Authors should use the “Preface” to discuss a book’s significance, aims, scope, and structure, with acknowledgments, if any, at the end. They should use the “Introduction” to talk about the subject matter of the book. NCSRLL defines a “Foreword” to be text written by someone other than the author.

Illustrations

Given the cost of illustrations, NCSRLL usually provides a graphic design for the cover. All illustrations within the text are xerographic reproductions. If an author wishes the designer to use a particular graphic or illustration for the cover, however, it should be handled in one of the following ways:

  • Photographs: Authors who wish to use illustrations should provide them in camera-ready form at their own expense and submit them with the appropriate rights-release form obtained from the copyright holder, with the final manuscript. If a detail of an image is to be used, authors need to indicate the area of interest on a photocopy of the image. An 8˝ x 10˝ positive color film transparency provides the best fidelity and detail and is preferred for reproduction. 35mm slides are also acceptable, but the larger the original transparency, the better the reproduction. Color photographs are also acceptable, but transparencies are preferred. If a detail of an image is to be used, the area of interest should be indicated on a photocopy of the image.
  • Digital Photographs or Scans: Authors submitting digital photographs or scans should use 300ppi. Please note that most images on the web are of lesser quality and are therefore not suitable for publication. If a detail of an image is to be used, it should be indicated on a photocopy of the image.
  • Interior Illustrations: Authors using illustrations throughout the text of their books should place high quality reproductions in the appropriate position in the manuscript with caption and attribution.

Peer Review

Members of NCSRLL’s Publication Board identify scholars from the Editorial Board or from the profession at large to serve as peer reviewers of manuscripts. Scholars generally take 3 months to finish their reports from the time they accept the task. One of five decisions will ultimately be reached by the reviewer and subsequently suggested to the Board:

  • Accept
  • Accept with non-binding revisions
  • Accept with binding revisions
  • Invite to revise and resubmit
  • Reject

Members of the Publication Board assess the peer review evaluations of a manuscript and decide whether or not to accept it for publication.

Production

After a manuscript is accepted for publication, the author is asked to provide, in a timely manner, a new, revised copy that incorporates the readers’ revisions and suggestions. Authors should also include a letter describing how they have accepted and incorporated the readers’ revisions and suggestions or justify why, in exceptional cases, they may have declined to do so.

If the editor agrees that the needed changes have been made, NCSRLL sends the revised manuscript to the printer for an estimate of cost. The UNC Press then sets the price of the book and calculates the author’s subsidy, which is always equal to fifty percent of the total cost of production and distribution. Most authors are subsidized by the research councils of their universities.

NCSRLL then issues a contract and produces a first galley, which is sent to the author for proofreading. It is at this point that the author produces an index for the volume, since the first galley proof contains the final pagination of the work. The printer then produces a second galley proof, which is checked by the editor against the changes suggested to the first galley to ascertain that all of the author’s changes have been made, and the index printed. Finally, the manuscript appears as a book, and its publication is announced in the next UNC Press catalog. The timeline of the entire process varies, but generally it takes approximately one year. For further information on policies and procedures, contact us at romlpub@unc.edu.