Submitting manuscripts and illustrations

[Prepared for Yale Southeast Asia Studies monograph series but applicable to most scholarly books, monographs, and journals. View or download a printable booklet of this guide in PDF format. Refer to the separate SEAS Monograph Styles (2016) for details of spelling, punctuation, etc., intended for copyeditors and proofreaders, but helpful to authors as well.]


Part I — Preparing manuscript and components

Part II — Digital files


This document concerns the mechanics of preparing and submitting materials for typesetting and layout — not editorial styles or the design of a volume. [The PDF SEAS Monograph Styles (2016) is the current SEAS editorial stylesheet.] It is intended to help both author and editor clarify what they mean to convey to the typographer in order to avoid delays and extra expenses during production.

Individual authors, volume editors, and the series copyeditor are equally urged to observe the guidelines herein. While their objective is the clean and efficient handing off of manuscript and components to the typographer for production, the mechanics described should be kept in mind at all stages of preparing and editing a manuscript.

Note: Where “printed” copy is called for, a PDF that accurately matches printed output is an acceptable alternative to a physical print and can be assumed unless otherwise specified. Electronic (or digital) files refer to the application file in which text or an illustration was created or first saved. Text should be saved in a text editor or word processing application, images and other illustrations in their native graphics formats.

Part I — Preparing manuscript and components

Quick summary

Submit all text and notes both as printed copy (or PDF) and as digital files (text editor or word processor).

Treat all notes as endnotes and begin them on a new page following the text of the chapter. Do not submit text with footnotes at the bottom of pages.

Submit illustrations (figures, photographs, drawings, maps, charts, graphs, etc.) and tables separately from text. Each illustration or table should be saved in its own digital file, never in the same file as chapter or note text. When printed, each should appear alone on its own page.

Digital images are acceptable only as a native-format digital files. Illustrations and tables should never be created with, pasted into, or otherwise embedded or saved in a word-processing application or presentation software (such as Microsoft PowerPoint) files. A PDF is not an acceptable substitute for a native-format digital file.

Attach printed captions to their accompanying illustrations, not to chapter text. Additionally, submit captions in a digital file apart from the illustration file and separate from the running text. Multiple captions may be grouped in the same text file. Ensure that captions are in sequential order and are correctly numbered and identified. (The caption of a table is considered part of the table; it belongs with all other elements of the table and apart from chapter text.)

Explicitly mark heading and sub-heading levels in the printed copy and digital file. Do not use word-processing styles or rely upon formatting to distinguish heading levels.

The copyeditor should tag (mark) both the beginning and end of an extract or other block of text to be indented or offset from the standard margins of body text.

Abbreviations and acronyms should be in full caps (all caps), not small caps. Titles, headings, sub-headings, captions, legends, or any copy element other than abbreviations and acronyms must never be in full caps; they should be lower case, with appropriate initial caps. (Note the exception for extra-textual instructions, as discussed infra.)

Text and notes

Fonts. Use the same font throughout, preferably a unicode font. If foreign or technical terms require non-western characters or special symbols, a unicode font is required. If any portion of a manuscript was ever written or edited in a western language other than English, or was created or edited in a non-English version of software, a unicode font is required for the entire manuscript.

Organization. Organize text and notes by chapter (or comparable section). Parts, introductions, breaks, and special sections should be clearly identified.

Justification. All text, including headings, should be left-aligned with ragged (i.e., unjustified) right margin.

Hyphenation. Do not break or hyphenate words at the ends of lines. Turn off automatic hyphenation in the word-processing application.

Page numbers. Number all pages (for reference to the print or PDF). If numbering begins anew for each chapter or comparable section, precede the page number with the chapter number or title (such as “intro—p. 12” or “07—p. 125”). (Page numbers on the submitted ms will not correspond to the text when edited or typeset).

Numbering of notes. Number notes consecutively throughout a chapter, beginning anew with number “1” for each chapter. (For unnumbered notes, see below.) Ensure that the reference numbers of notes in the text correspond to the note numbers themselves. (Although most authors use a word processor’s footnote/endnote function to create and automatically link notes with reference numbers, an independently created list of non-automated notes is acceptable, and actually preferable for typesetting.)

Unnumbered notes. A source note for a chapter (copyright, permission, acknowledgment, or the like) should be unnumbered and should precede all other notes of the chapter.

Note references. Whether a number or a symbol (such as an asterisk), note references should never appear on title or heading lines.

Printed page setup

Titles, captions, and headings

Ensure that the correct spelling and capitalization of every word in a heading or title, and the distinction of foreign or technical terms, are not obscured by blanket use of italics or caps for headings and titles. Thus the following guidelines:

Identify titles and headings. Each title, heading, sub-heading, etc., should be on a line separate from running text. Identify each heading with an explicit note preceding it, such as [CHAPTER TITLE], [PART TITLE], or [HEADING LEVEL B]. (This would be an appropriate use of full caps in the digital file.). Do not use a different typeface or font size or rely upon alignment to distinguish titles and headings.

Heading levels. If there is more than one heading level anywhere in a manuscript (that is, if there is a sub-heading), mark the heading hierarchy explicitly and consistently throughout: [HEADING LEVEL A], [HEADING LEVEL B], etc.

Word-processor formatting and styles

[see Formatting Text: Dos and Don’ts for more details]

Plain and simple. Keep the formatting as plain as possible and the use of word-processing styles, style-sheets, and special effects minimal. Think “typewriter,” not word processor.

Fonts. Use the same font throughout unless non-western characters or special symbols require a special font. Unicode are always preferred and sometimes required (see details above).

Italics. Indicate italicized words either as italics or underline — merely be consistent.

Underline. By convention, underline is interpreted during typesetting as italics. If the author and editor use actual italics rather than underline to indicate italicized words, then underline may be used to insert extra-textual instructions for the typographer or to clarify structural elements such as heading levels.

Boldface. Boldface is seldom found in the text of typeset books. Any text submitted as boldface will be altered to conform to the design specifications of the volume. However, the author or editor is free to use boldface to insert extra-textual instructions for the typographer or to clarify structural elements such as heading levels.

Small caps. The typographer will set certain words and phrases as small caps according to the SEAS design and style specifications. If the copyeditor (or, rarely, an author) wishes to designate certain small caps as well, do so with a marginal, bracketed, or other extra-textual instruction. Manuscript text itself should not contain small caps.

Hyperlinks and “live” web and email addresses. Eliminate all live links, such as web or email addresses. Be diligent about removing hyperlinks from bibliographies and reference lists, where they may have been carried over from a source document.

[Why? Both the hidden code and the visible text of a hyper­link — in other words, the entire address — may translate as blank during typesetting.]


Typesetting. Tables will be typeset following the style specifications of the volume and within the constraints of page size. Layout and alignment may therefore differ from what is submitted by author or editor. If certain elements in a table must be aligned or formatted a particular way, please include specific instructions for the typographer. Table titles, column and row heads, and table data should not use full caps unless as acronyms, certain abbreviations, or called for by terms or conventions specific to the field of study.

Numbering. Number tables consecutively, chapter by chapter, using the double numeration system (1.1, 1.2, etc.; 2.1, 2.2, etc.).

Placement. In the text, mark where a table should appear (usually immediately after the first reference to it) with a note on a separate line using a consistent phrase and style, for example: [TABLE NUMBER ##.## HERE]. Ensure that each table’s digital file and printed copy (or PDF) are correspondingly identified.

Submit separately. Do not submit tables within the running text of its chapter, whether on the printed copy or in the digital file. All elements of a table — including the title or caption and any notes — should themselves be kept together. Then each complete table should be saved as separate digital file. Specifics follow:

Printed copy (or PDF). Print each table beginning on a new, separate page. Confirm that the printed copy accurately reflects the way elements of the table relate to one another: column and row spans, headings, stubs, etc. Also confirm that the details of text and text formatting — spelling, foreign terms, italics, abbreviations — are correct and legible on the printed page or PDF.

Digital files. Do not submit multiple tables in the same file. Save each table as a separate digital file with a file name that clearly identifies the table. Acceptable applications or formats for submitting table files are: word processor, text editor, spreadsheet, tab-separated text, and comma-separated text. Bear in mind that the relationship of data cells in complex tables built by a word-processor may not survive translation to another application and will need to be reconstructed for typesetting. Data submitted in less visually appealing forms — such as tab-separated text, comma-separated text, or a spreadsheet — can be typeset more efficiently.


Numbering. Most illustrations (photographs, drawings, charts, graphs) will be identified as “figure” and numbered consecutively, chapter by chapter, using the double numeration system: figure 1.1, figure 1.2, etc.; figure 2.1, figure 2.2, etc. Maps are identified as “map” and numbered similarly but in an independent series: map 1.1, map 1.2, etc.; map 2.1, map 2.2, etc.

Placement. In the text, mark where an illustration should appear (usually immediately after the first reference to it) with a note on a separate line using a consistent phrase and style, for example: [FIGURE ##.## HERE]. Ensure that each photograph, each print (or PDF) of an illustration, and each illustration’s digital file is correspondingly identified.

Submit separately. Never insert an illustration or graphic — no matter how small, whether digital file or print — into the running text. Digital files must be in native formats (see below) and their file names should clearly identify them vis-à-vis the manuscript.

Hard-copy artwork and photos. If any print, negative, or tangible artwork requires extraordinary handling because of its fragility or intrinsic value, please alert SEAS. Ensure that each print is fully identified and that its number and caption appear on the front or back, or are securely attached (without marring the illustration, of course).

Digital file formats. Illustrations submitted as digital files are acceptable only in standard native graphic formats, such as TIFF and Adobe Photoshop (for raster files), EPS or Adobe Illustrator (for vector files). JPEG is acceptable only if it is the original digital image (from a camera or scan) and has never been resized, adjusted in any way, or saved a second time. PDFs are not acceptable substitutes for a native digital file.

Important: Graphics of any sort embedded in a word-processing document are not acceptable. Graphics embedded in presentation software, such as Microsoft PowerPoint, are never acceptable.

For more about preparing illustrations, see Source Images for Print Publication: I. Continuous tone images (photographs) and II. Line art and everything else (non-continuous tone)

Quality of digital files

Continuous-tone raster images (such as digital photos, and scanned color or grayscale photos and illustrations) require a resolution of at least 300 pixels per inch (ppi) in order to print. One-color illustrations (also referred to as black & white or non-continuous tone or 1-bit images) that are scanned as raster images require a higher resolution than continuous tone to print: they should be at least 1,200 ppi. In either case, higher than minimum resolution (or larger dimensions) is both acceptable and better, as it allows leeway in layout, straightening, and cropping.

Vector files (such as art-work created in Adobe Illustrator) are resolution independent and generally present no quality issues if they are saved as editable Illustrator or EPS files.

Rule of thumb. The pixel resolution of an image and its dimensions (width and height in inches, centimeters, etc.) are interrelated can be confused. Below are quick rules of thumb to determine the desired minimum size/resolution of digital images for a typical SEAS monograph page:

For more about preparing illustrations, see Source Images for Print Publication: I. Continuous tone images (photographs) and II. Line art and everything else (non-continuous tone)

Figures, drawings, maps, charts, and graphs

Unless another understanding has been reached with the author, SEAS will determine whether graphs, maps, sketches, and other drawings will be recast for legibility, scale, reproduction quality, or confirmation to the style of the monograph. The author will be sent a copy of any re-drawn figures for approval before they go into the final layout. If there are special considerations with any illustration, please attach a note with the figure when the manuscript is submitted. For graphs, submit the supporting data as a text or spreadsheet file if possible.

Part II — Digital Files

Author to copyeditor (text only)

Copyediting will probably take place on a Macintosh using Microsoft Word. Consult SEAS for current acceptable or compatible formats and whether chapters should be submitted as individual files.

Author to typographer/designer (illustrations and tables)

Illustrations submitted as digital files are acceptable only in standard native graphic formats, such as TIFF, EPS, Adobe Photoshop, or Adobe Illustrator (see above). Vector files are preferred for graphics other than photographs. A PDF is equivalent to a print copy and is not a substitute for native a image file. Raster files must be high resolution. (See above for specifics).

Graphics embedded in Microsoft PowerPoint files or Microsoft Word documents, or any other word processor document, are unacceptable.

Data for tables will be typeset by the typographer. Graphs may require regeneration if quality is not acceptable. Please submit table and, if requested, graph data as digital files using a standard spreadsheet, text editor, or word-processing application. When in doubt about compatibility, it is usually safe to save data as a tab-delimited or comma-delimited text file.

Editor/author to typographer (text)

Final, copyedited manuscript files will be processed using editing and typesetting software (in Mac OS). Although almost any edited source file can be input for typesetting, some word processors convert better than others. Two problems that often crop up from word-processor files are (1) incorrect character mapping of punctuation, diacritical marks, symbols, and other non-English or non-standard characters, (2) excess “garbage,” that is, lines of computer code. The former is particularly insidious because it can occur inconsistently and be easily overlooked. Below are suggestions learned from our past experiences:

Note: all files submitted to the typographer in MS Word are immediately converted and saved in other text-editing or word-processing applications for preparing the text for typesetting and layout. MetaGlyfix’s current word-processing applications of choice are Apple Pages and Nisus Writer Express. For authors and editors who compose in applications other than MS Word, there is no need to “Save As” or otherwise convert their manuscripts to MS Word if submitted directly to the typographer.

Transmitting files

Digital files may be emailed, transmitted via ftp or a sharing service, or submitted on CD-ROM or DVD. Emailed or ftp files should be stuffed, zipped, or otherwise compressed to prevent file corruption.

Last updated 20 February 2016 (Saturday) at 15:10:55 EST