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Life of a Book Timeline

Life of a Book

From the proposal submission to book publication, each book we publish follows a common journey with key milestones and contributions from experienced staff across several departments. Whether we’re publishing a trade book or a scholarly monograph, our process helps ensure the final book is beautifully packaged, rigorously vetted, and targeted to your core audience.

1-2 years to publication

  • Book Proposal Submission. Reach out to the appropriate UC Press Acquisitions Editor to discuss your book project and submit your book proposal or manuscript for review.
  • Peer Review. If they are interested in the project, your Acquisitions Editor will notify you of our interest. Once they decide the project is ready, your Acquisitions Editor will then coordinate peer reviews of the project by subject-matter experts.
  • Publishing Decision. A cross-departmental team will make a publishing decision based on the editor’s presentation, peer review, and submitted materials.
  • Contract. Once a publishing decision has been made, your Acquisitions Editor will negotiate your publishing contract.
  • Editorial Committee Approval. After the manuscript has been revised to address feedback from peer reviewers and the press, the Acquisitions Editor will bring your project to the UC Press Editorial Committee (EC). The EC comprises faculty members from different disciplines, who review the completed manuscript, peer reviews, and approve the work or ask for further changes.

8-10 months to publication

  • Final Manuscript Submission. Before the final manuscript submission, your Editorial Assistant will share our Preliminary Project Information (PPI) form to collect your ideas for the cover design and descriptive copy. You’ll then work with your Editorial Assistant to submit our final manuscript information (FMI) form, along with any needed permissions, art, or other materials before the project moves to production.
  • Production and Design. Once all final materials are submitted, the book is sent to the production department to coordinate cover design, copyediting, indexing, and printing, as well as preparation of an ebook. Your Production Editor is the key contact for guiding your book through production and managing the schedule. You’ll also prepare the index — or hire a freelance Indexer — and work with your UC Press designated Copyeditor to review edits to the manuscript.
  • Marketing. Our Marketing, Sales, and Publicity teams review the book and make key decisions around the packaging and promotions strategy. Our Author Marketing Communications Manager will reach out to share the Author Promotions Questionnaire (APQ), a form that collects information to inform the marketing strategy.

4-6 months to publication

  • Sales Promotion and Catalog. The seasonal catalog is launched to announce all upcoming titles to our subscribers, sales representatives, select media contacts and journal editors. We meet with our domestic and international reps to share new releases, who then promote to their accounts.
  • Book Pre-ordering. Once the book cover, description, and publication details are finalized, your book's product page is made live on our website and pre-ordering is enabled acrossonline retail platforms such as Amazon and Pre-ordering on will be available 30 days prior to publication. We also craft your book’s metadata; this is any data that describes your book, including title, subtitle, price, publication date, ISBN, keywords, subject categories, and other relevant information that will optimize visibility and discoverability online.
  • Media & Events Outreach. For trade titles, our Publicity team will reach out early to discuss a tailored publicity strategy for your book, including pitching for review, feature, interview, and content consideration. Your Publicist may also approach event coordinators at public lecture venues and bookstores, if appropriate.
  • Advance Copies. After the final version of the book has been typeset and printed, books are shipped to distribution centers and warehouses. Advance copies are sent out to authors, blurbers, journals, and select media contacts.
  • Book Promotions. Around publication, we will launch a promotions strategy targeted to your book’s audience, including: publicity outreach based on your input, our contacts, and direct requests from media outlets and journals; email campaigns to scholars in relevant disciplines; exhibits at key conferences; partnering with you on content for the UC Press blog and social channels; and submitting the book for awards. We will also amplify any of your book promotions, such as events and media coverage.

Pub Day!

  • Time to celebrate. Your book is officially available and promotional plans are well underway. Books will be available internationally about one month after the official pub day. Events and lectures may commence. Our Publicists will continue to focus on strategic media engagements for trade titles and review outreach for all books. Our Marketing team will also continue to execute our marketing plan and work with you to amplify your work.
  • Translations and Rights Deals. Our Rights team will attend international book fairs and work with publishers around the world to license the book for translation or other editions, such as audiobooks.