Archive:Exec report - Journal Editor 2006 - 2007

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Journal Editor: Kaja Sadowski

Here is a rough outline of how things got done this year, to serve as a template of sorts for the future:

Before November

- verbally hassle anyone who has done anything interesting about writing an article for the journal. Do this often, possibly with threats of biting for those who don't comply. This will get people thinking about the journal, and the possibility of writing not just a TR, but also an article after a particularly awesome/epic trip.

November - December

- get in touch with advertisers. Hit up as many as possible and make sure you provide them with a price list, an exact idea of what ads should look like, and a clear deadline (it's always possible to move the deadline forward if need be, but don't just tell them that you need an ad by "march").

- post a "call for articles" on the message board and in the VOCene, with a link to the guidelines on the Wiki. You may not get any results yet, but it gets people thinking. I'd think you could get in contact with Alumni that we want to contribute at this point too, since we want to give them lots of time to get things together. A clear submission deadline is pretty much mandatory at this point. You can give certain people leeway at your discretion, but be clear that the deadline is there and more-or-less set in stone from the moment you start soliciting articles.

- get in contact with printers and get estimates for what you would like to do. In order for this to work, you need to have a precise idea of what the journal will look like (rough # of colour pages, # of b&w pages, type of printing). Make sure that you specify that we want FSC certified paper. In 2006-07, I worked with Hemlock Printers. If possible, get a timeline for the printing process from them. Once you have decided on a print date, knowing how long they need to get things done will give you a personal deadline for putting together the files from which you can extrapolate a submission deadline.


- collect and edit articles. At this point, it is a good idea to rustle up some editing minions to help spread the work around. Put out more calls for submissions and emphasize that we need photographs to go with articles. Editing at this stage should be done for content/structure/grammar rather than length, since you don't know yet how many articles you will receive and how much space will be available per article.

- close deals with advertisers. Getting ads taken care of well before the publishing deadline leaves you free to deal with all of the other intricacies of putting together a book in the weeks to come.

- contact the printer of your choice and seal the deal.


- continue to solicit and edit articles. Keep a rough count of how many pages of text you have amassed, and be prepared to reject articles if you get too many submissions. Enforce your submission deadline (mid- to late February) to avoid getting swamped by last-minute additions while you're trying to do layout. Edit for length--mercilessly if necessary.

- write the "Editor's Report" (other stand-bys are the President and VP's reports). Extort photos of the current exec for the "VOC Exec" pages. Make up categories and select winners of Journal awards (to be written up either in your own report or a separate article, depending on taste and space allowances).

- contact the printers and get specifics on layout (margin sizes, printer marks, PDF formatting, placement of FSC logos--these require approval--etc).

- acquire a publishing program, learn to use it, and put together the actual journal (I downloaded a free 30-day trial of InDesign, taught myself how to use it and put together the entire journal before it expired, which is an efficient, if exhausting way of going about this--I do still highly recommend InDesign). Stay in touch with printers throughout this process and run things by them if you aren't sure of how they will work out in print. Remember to format your photographs for printing in CMYK (most cameras save images in RGB mode, which is why what you see on screen doesn't usually match up completely with what your printer spits out. Reformatting the pictures in Photoshop or a similar application and then making any adjustments there saves the printers a lot of trouble in pre-press and makes sure that things actually look how you wanted them to once printed). Also remember that everything looks brighter/lighter on a computer screen than it does on paper. I ended up adjusting all my images so that they looked over-exposed on screen, but printed well (this is key with black and white pictures--if they print too dark, they tend to lose all meaning and value as everything blends together). The pre-press folk can give you exact specs for where to set the curves in Photoshop (or the equivalent in whatever program you're using) to get the right effect when printing.

- submit the PDFs to the printers by the deadline (Hemlock let me do this online). Deal with any emails their pre-press department sends you about things that you need to fix. Come in to the plant to see hard copy proofs and make any final adjustments. Wait 10 days or so, then return to the plant to pick up the finished product.

April and beyond

- distribute journals at the banquet. Rejoice in a job well done!

- send thank-yous to the printers, contributors, editors and other appropriate parties

- pay the printers (if they send us an invoice the club can do this directly, so no need to get your own credit card involved)

- send copies of the journal and invoices to advertisers

- send 2 copies of the journal to the Library of Canada and any other organization listed on the "Journal Exchange" page of the Wiki