Pacific Linguistics (PL) and Asia-Pacific Linguistics (A-PL) welcome the publication of manuscripts based on PhD and MA theses, and we encourage recent graduates to submit a book proposal. Recent books in our series that are based on theses include:
- Russell Barlow (2020) A sketch grammar of Pondi (A-PL)
- Aurélie Cauchard (2018) Spatial Expression in Caac, An Oceanic Language Spoken in the North of New Caledonia (PL)
- John Mansfield (2019), Murrinhpatha Morphology and Phonology (PL)
- Sonja Riesberg (2014) Symmetrical Voice and Linking in Western Austronesian Languages (PL)
- Dineke Schokkin (2020) A Grammar of Paluai, the Language of Baluan Island, Papua New Guinea (PL)
All book proposals and manuscripts are assessed and reviewed in the same way. However, this document sets out the publication process with specific reference to manuscripts that are based on PhD or MA theses since recent graduates are often new to book publication.
Submitting your book proposal
Based on your book proposal, the Editorial Board determines whether the work falls within the scope of the relevant series, and is a piece of work that in principle, the Board is interested in publishing.
If a book proposal relates to a thesis, then it is requested that you include as part of the book proposal your complete thesis, as well as the examiners reports. This assists the Board in making a decision about the potential of the thesis to be turned into a published book.
At this statge the Editorial Board may decide that the work is not suitable for publication within the relevant series. However, if the thesis is considered to have the potential to become a published book, then it is provisionally accepted for publication pending external review. In this case the Editorial Board requests that you submit the complete book manuscript.
Submitting your book manuscript
Most passed theses, even of those of high quality, need substantial revision before they are publishable as a book. Some points of consideration:
- Reviewers will usually treat a work differently depending on whether they serve as an assessor for a submitted thesis, or for a work that is to be published as a book. A thesis demonstrates that you have learnt how to carry out and report on a major research project, whereas a published book serves as an authoritative source on a particular topic. Assessors expect that this is reflected in the quality of scholarship and the content of the manuscript. For example, theses often include detailed literature reviews that demonstrate a students’ knowledge of the field, while published books tend only to review and cite the literature directly relevant to the argument presented.
- Style, typography and formatting need to be of a higher standard than is usually the case for a thesis. While, the publisher manages the typesetting of the manuscript, it is important that the author carefully edit and proof-reader the manuscript. You may find it useful to have your manuscript edited/proof-read by someone else.
If you are unsure what needs to be changed in your thesis to turn it into a book manuscript, it can be helpful to discuss this with someone on your advisory panel, or another mentor. The Editorial Board can also provide advice on this.
The book manuscript that you submit to PL and A-PL must be a revised version of your thesis.
Review of your book manuscript
The Editorial Board sends all book manuscripts out for external review. The reviewers are asked to assess: (i) the quality of the research on which the manuscript is based; (ii) the quality of the presentation of that research; (iii) if there are aspects of the work that need to be revised prior to publication. The decision to publish a manuscript depends on this assessment by the external reviewers. Reviewers may suggest that a manuscript is not suitable for publication, that it is suitable for publication with further revision, or that it is ready for immediate publication.
The reviewing process tends takes two to three months.
Revision of your book manuscript
It is usual that the reveiwer reports suggest certain revisions of the book manuscript, and that the Editorial Board requires you to revise the manuscript in accordance with these reports before publication. At this stage you are asked to do these further revisions on your book manuscript. It is also helpful if you make notes for the Editorial Board on how you have addressed each of the comments in the reviewer reports. As well as making the revisions based on the reviewer reports, you need to prepare the manuscript following the guidelines of the relevant publisher.
Submission of the final version of your book manuscript
Once you have prepared the final version of your book manuscript, it is approved by the Editorial Board before it goes into the final production and publication process with De Gruyter Mouton for PL or ANU Press for A-PL.