Publishing Fundamentals MCQs

Publishing Fundamentals MCQs

Our team has conducted extensive research to compile a set of Publishing Fundamentals MCQs. We encourage you to test your Publishing Fundamentals knowledge by answering these 60 multiple-choice questions provided below.
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1: What is a 'book block'?

A.   The perfect bound or sewn pages of a hardback book, before they are cased in.

B.   A stack of books — stacked horizontally — in a distribution warehouse.

C.   Oversized books found in a publishers dumpbin in bookshops.

D.   All of the above

2: What is a 'vanity press'?

A.   A publisher that deals in book aimed at the celebrity consumer market.

B.   A printers that produce glossy magazines, and occasionally fashion and 4-colour book, such as cookery books.

C.   A publishing house that publishes books at the author's expense often for their personal pride or 'vanity,' often because mainstream publishing does not see the author's project as commercially viable.

D.   A publishers run by a notoriously vain and arrogant publishing director, earning the title 'vanity press.'

3: What is a 'wholesaler'?

A.   A stockholding supplier of titles to booksellers whose business is based on buying from the publisher in quantity and supplying single copy or small orders.

B.   A seller of books in bulk, often delivered direct from the publisher to the general public at greatly reduced prices.

C.   A retailer who works predominantly online.

D.   A stockholder who always sells titles in series and titles by the same author 'whole' rather than in separate amounts.

E.   None of the above

4: What is 'web offset' printing?

A.   A printing process which involves printing onto a reel or web of paper, and produces folded sections off the press.

B.   Printing when a spider is used to secure the stray threads that keep a book tightly stitched.

C.   Same as offset lithography, except 25% of the process is now digital too.

D.   None of the above

5: What are 'returns'?

A.   Second novels, but ones that don't sell as well as the first ones.

B.   Employees that return to the publishing house after a holiday or maternity leave.

C.   Books returned from bookshops to publishers, unsold, for full credit.

D.   Promotion material returned from bookshops after it is no longer needed for that season's books.

6: What are the 'verso' and 'recto' in a book?

A.   The right-hand page and the left-hand page.

B.   The top left corner and te top right corner

C.   The left-hand page and the right-hand page.

D.   The front and the back of the book

7: What is 'search engine optimization,' a technique now used to market books online?

A.   A service that occurs online where the book cover to added to as many websites as possible.

B.   A service that improves a website's visibility on search engines by using specific keyword searches.

C.   A special reading of the book for local industry experts to decide on the production quality, the printing format, etc.

D.   The optimum time of year to release the book.

8: What is 'perfect binding'?

A.   Adhesive binding in which individual pages are glued together as opposed to sewn in sections; also called unsewn binding.

B.   Binding that is 'perfect' because there are never any gaps or visible seals, and it has to be opened by a machine.

C.   The spine stitching of a book, always in cross-stitching style.

D.   None of the above

9: What does 'imposition' refer to?

A.   An intrusion by the author into a production or editorial meeting often to defend his or her book.

B.   The folding process whereby a piece of paper cannot be folded more than 7 times.

C.   The location of a printers in relation to its largest publishing client.

D.   The positioning of pages on a sheet or reel of paper when printed, which then produces the correct sequence of pages when folded.

10: What defines a book's 'format'?

A.   The shape of a book as defined by its height and depth.

B.   The height versus the number of pages.

C.   The colour of the cover.

D.   The cost of producing a single copy divided by the entire first print run.

11: What is the 'folio'?

A.   The page itself, but usually not with a page number.

B.   The page number printed at the top or bottom of each page.

C.   The oldest form of the manuscript, often retrieved from the author's house and put in a glass display cabinet.

D.   The dedication page.

12: What is 'QuarkXPress'?

A.   An electric design tool that printers use to sow the spine onto the back of books.

B.   A reference to the number of erratum, or errors, in a firs print run.

C.   A visual design package printed out and distributed around the entire company as a guideline to the 'house style.'

D.   A graphic design software program, often used on Macs, which enables a designer to control words and images for creating a professional design.

13: What are 'topping rights'?

A.   An author's rights to have his or her book returned from the publisher, should the author decide to no longer publish.

B.   A printer's rights to refuse to publish should they deem the material illegal or obscene, as printers are often sued along with publishers for breaking obscenity laws.

C.   These occur in a book auction when the opportunity is given by the agent to the publisher to match (or increase by an agreed percentage) the highest bid received from other publishers.

D.   The right of sales staff to offer large discounts (up to 60%) to ensure a surplus amount of sales are made of a particular title, hence 'topping' the expected sales figure.

14: What is an 'advance'?

A.   A short delay in the book editorial process.

B.   Pre-order sales available online.

C.   Review copes sent out weeks before publication.

D.   The non-refundable payment to an author by the publisher offset against royalty earnings.

15: What does 'bulk' refer to?

A.   The width of a book.

B.   The weight of a book.

C.   The number of books commonly packaged together.

D.   The thickness of a book.

16: What is the difference between 'offset printing' and 'print-on-demand'?

A.   Offset lithography is less expensive, but print-on-demand is more time-consuming.

B.   Offset printing is named after the process of offset lithography, which in the days when letterpress was still the predominant printing method' print-on-demand refers to digitally copied files that can be printed at short notice for less set-up costs for the same print-run.

C.   Both are now used, but offset lithography is used for hardback books, print-on-demand for paperback.

D.   Nothing, except print-on-demand is a more modern version of offset lithography.

E.   None of the above

17: What are 'prelims'?

A.   The preliminary pages of a book before the main text, usually numbered in roman numerals.

B.   A preliminary board meeting to decide on the upcoming titles on the front list.

C.   A 'sneak peek' viewing by members of the public for new titles.

D.   The opening 10 pages of a book, not including the dedication page.

E.   All of the above

18: What does 'RRP' stand for?

A.   Recommended Real Price

B.   Restricted Retail Person

C.   Recommended Retail Price

D.   Real Retail Price

19: What is 'endpaper'?

A.   The pages of heavy paper at the front and back of a hardback book that join the book block to the binding.

B.   Paper at the back of the book that is blank to ensure an overall even number of pages.

C.   The last book off the print run, often kept by the publisher for nostalgic value.

D.   The last few pages in the prelims before the opening chapter begins.

20: What is 'half-tone'?

A.   A book in two colours, like monochrome (one of them white).

B.   The top or bottom half of a book, often created separately.

C.   The result of a process in which continuous tone illustrations are broken down into dots for printing. The 4-colour printing process.

D.   Print-on-demand, by another name.

21: What is a 'book proof' and how is it used in sales?

A.   Proof of purchase, often as a slip of paper found inside the first pages.

B.   Any page in the book that is being corrected at the publishers, but always in colour.

C.   The manuscript in a typeset format.

D.   A specially produced advance copy of the uncorrected text of a title, often used promotionally by publishers' sales teams, for example as early review copies.

22: What is a 'blad'?

A.   Similar to when a book 'bleeds,' the running of colours on a page.

B.   A term used to describe various advance sales materials, often consisting of a selection of pages of text and illustration covered by a proof of the bookjacket.

C.   A term used to describe accounting procedures at a publishers, whereby books sold are related to books discounted and books returned.

D.   A nickname for a book (often non-fiction) that sold so poorly that the author was not commissioned to submit a second manuscript.

23: What are 'permissions'?

A.   The permission granted to an author to sell his or her own book in bookshops.

B.   The granting of rights by one publisher to another to allow quotation extracts from a published title.

C.   The literary agent's rights that have to be negotiated between the author and the publisher.

D.   The initial copies of a book delivered to national newspapers for early review — upon request.

24: What does it mean when a book is 'cased'?

A.   It is read in advance by an editorial assistant.

B.   The book is paperback, but set in a protective wooden case.

C.   The book is hardback; derived from the case into which the book block is inserted (cased in) at the conclusion of hardback binding.

D.   The book is double stitched.

25: What is the difference between an appendix and a bibliography?

A.   An appendix is material that is not part of the main text at the end of the book; a bibliography is a separate list of books that are referred to in the text or can be consulted in the future.

B.   An appendix is always shorter than a bibliography, otherwise nothing.

C.   An appendix is a separate list of books that are referred to in the text or can be consulted in the future; a bibliography is material that is not part of the main text at the end of the book

D.   An appendix appears at the back of the book; a bibliography can appear at the front or back.

26: What is a 'book packager'?

A.   A distribution company that packages and delivers books to retailers.

B.   A book printers that also seals the books when delivering them to bookshops or returns them to publishers.

C.   A member of the design team at a publishers who designs the covers.

D.   A company that creates and originates (and sometimes manufactures) books for publishing houses.

E.   None of the above

27: Which of these cities have important book fairs every year for the publishing industry?

A.   Bologna; Frankfurt; London

B.   Athens; Leeds; Cape Town

C.   Sydney; York; Ashville

D.   London; Milan; Seville

28: What are book 'bar codes'?

A.   Distribution numbers used by haulage companies to deliver the books to high street chains.

B.   The machine readable image of lines of varying thickness that encode a book's ISBN and printed on the back cover. When 'read' by electronic tills, the bar code plays a vital part in booksellers' EPOS systems for sales and stock control.

C.   The wavy lines that appears on a damaged book, often when marked by water stains.

D.   The thin sheaves of paper that sit between stacked books to neatly separate and protect them.

29: What is a 'scout' and how does he or she work?

A.   A person employed in an overseas location or foreign territory to identify possible acquisitions of new titles.

B.   A person employed by a local scouting agency who visits the publisher to acquire new titles for national distribution.

C.   A person who organize business team-building trips for the publishing staff, often at weekends.

D.   An advance sales person who flies to all the book fares with at least 50% of the publishers' purchasing budget to acquire priority titles.

30: What is an 'ozalid'?

A.   A kind of orchid, a flower much loved by editorial staff.

B.   Very similar to a bar code on the back of the book.

C.   A proof made from film and used to check the position of the text and illustrations during a final approval stage before printing. Called 'blues' in the US after the colour of the image on the proof.

D.   A 2-colour printing process.

31: What is a 'blurb'?

A.   A debate in the editorial department about future editorial book policy.

B.   The brief description of the book that appears on the back cover of the paperback, or on the inside front flap of the hardback.

C.   An announcement of future titles, often delivered at the beginning of the year to the local media.

D.   An author's dissatisfaction with the quality of the book, delivered as an official complaint.

32: What does it mean when a page is said to 'bleed'?

A.   A term used for a damaged book, anything from dog-eared to missing whole pages.

B.   A term used for an image or illustration that extends beyond the trimmed page.

C.   A term used to describe a printing process in which a lot of red dye is used.

D.   a and b

E.   None of the above

33: Which of the following best describes an 'auction' in a publishing house?

A.   The agent arranges a meeting with several publishers in a room, and the bidding works like a regular auction.

B.   A book is given a certain purchase price for editors, and then all bids are revealed in the open, and a bidding frenzy begins.

C.   A process whereby a title is submitted, particularly by a literary agent, to a number of publishers in order to secure the best offer or highest price.

D.   A secret ballot is employed on pieces of paper dropped off at the publishers by special delivery.

E.   None of the above

34: What does 'EPOS' stand for and what does it mean?

A.   Electronic Position of Sale, the bookshop till system used for sales data and stock control.

B.   Elastic Purpose Operating Sale, description as above.

C.   Electronic Poised Operating Sale, description as above.

D.   Electronic Point of Sale, description as above.

E.   None of the above

35: What does a 'leaf' refer to?

A.   A page of the book comprising both recto and verso.

B.   A double space spread of an illustrated book.

C.   Two pages opposite each other, also a recto and verso.

D.   The first and the last page of the book.

E.   All of the above

36: Choose the best description of the job of a 'proofreader' from the list below.

A.   Someone who reads proofs but does not correct them.

B.   A person either employed in a publishing house or as a freelancer to read proofs and guarantee accurate typesetting.

C.   Always a freelancer who skims material just before publication as a final check.

D.   The continuation of copyediting — the proofreader is a reading by the same person who edited the book in the first instance.

37: What is a 'typeface'?

A.   The author's face as it appears on the back of the book.

B.   The editorial staff in a group photograph, often displayed in the editorial offices.

C.   The handwritten lettering that often appears at the beginning of a book, such as the author's signature.

D.   The design of the typed characters that make up the text of a book. Many hundreds of typefaces exist, but only about twenty are used in book publishing.

38: What is the Net Book Agreement (NBA)?

A.   A government VAT discount to make books universally less expensive to encourage more reading.

B.   The agreement once administered by the Publishers Association whereby publishers in the UK used to be able to dictate the minimum price at which their titles were sold by bookshops.

C.   A now defunct agreement to supply books at full-price in the 1990s despite complaints by European consumer groups.

D.   Synonym for the National Basketball Association.

39: What does 'ISBN' stand for and what does it mean?

A.   Isolated Solo Book Number a ten digit unique identifier for each title published, which is used in a wide range of applications in all stages of the supply chain throughout the world.

B.   International Serial Book Number, description as above.

C.   International Screening Book Number, description as above.

D.   International Standard Book Number, description as above.

40: What is an 'imprint'?

A.   The logo of a publishing house that appears on all their titles.

B.   The name of the publisher under which a title is issued — increasingly, due to consolidation, the term represents a publishing brand rather than a publishing company in its own right.

C.   A printing technique where the book is printed in-house but the cover is printed separately and attached at a later date.

D.   All of the above

41: What is the 'Dewey Decimal System'?

A.   A method for transferring books to a digital format.

B.   A copyright records system for the main publishing houses in the world.

C.   A weather radar system now adopted by major UK and US universities.

D.   The main system of library book classification.

42: What does 'colophon' mean?

A.   A medical condition often affecting editorial staff due to long periods of sitting down.

B.   Once the bibliographic information printed at the end of a book, now more commonly the publisher's logo printed on the title-page and the book jacket's spine.

C.   The 4-colour printing system that is still regularly used despite digital technology.

D.   b and c

E.   None of the above

43: What does 'point of sale' mean?

A.   The moment at which a sale is made in a bookshop.

B.   The unsold material that is returned to the publisher from the retailer.

C.   Merchandising display material provided by a publisher to bookshops as a way of promoting certain titles.

D.   The sharp end of publisher-retailer business deals, often associated with large supermarket discounts.

44: What is a 'C format' book?

A.   Next largest format after A and B.

B.   Next smallest book format after A and B.

C.   A giant-sized paperback, 50% larger than the usual hardback size.

D.   A variable term for any paperback format other than A and B, often used to describe a paperback edition published simultaneously with (and sometimes in the same format as) the hardback original.

E.   None of the above

45: What does the industry-wide abbreviation 'OP' mean?

A.   Out of Print.

B.   Out of Publishers.

C.   Overpriced.

D.   Operating Price.

E.   Occupied Person.

46: What does the 'furnish' of a book refer to?

A.   The furniture in the publishing house, a common industry nickname.

B.   The last editorial check before the proofs are finally sent for printing.

C.   The pulp and chemical components of a specific paper grade or quality.

D.   The glossy or matte finish added to a book cover.

47: What does 'CRC' stand for, and how is it used?

A.   Curious Reading Couple, husband-and-wife teams brought in to read and comment on books as ordinary members of the public.

B.   Cutting Real Cords, the reduction of a print format between print runs to reduce costs.

C.   Camera Ready Copy, the text of a title sent to a printer for reproduction and printing, universally abbreviated to CRC.

D.   Camera Rude Cut, images removed from books either by the publisher or printers, so not to risk court cases due to obscenity laws.

48: What are 'dues' (UK) or 'back orders' (US)?

A.   Order taken after a title is published, at a reduced rate.

B.   Orders taken before a title is published (or while it is unavailable for some reason) which are fulfilled when stock is again available; called in the US 'back orders'.

C.   Future order for the year following a title's publication, at a greatly reduced rate.

D.   The theoretical future titled by an author who hasn't written them yet.

49: What is the difference between an adaptation and a novelization?

A.   An adaptation is only a media transfer from book to film, while a novelization is only a media transfer from film to book.

B.   An adaptation is a novel (or other work) that is made into a different media form, such as a film or play carefully crafted for the new media; a novelization is the writing up of a play or film as a novel, often without regard for the merits of the new form.

C.   Exactly the same

D.   Very little except a novelization tends to have a lower RRP once in retail.

50: In academic publishing, what is 'peer review'?

A.   When two authors work on the same book, and both their names appear on the finished product.

B.   A process where author's swap manuscripts and each completes the other's work, often in the form of a last chapter.

C.   Sending out author copies to media reviewers at an early stage in the publishing process, as a way of deciding whether to publish.

D.   Also known as refereeing, peer review is a process in which an author's scholarly work is overseen by experts in the same field.