Participatio editor quick start

Thank you for volunteering your valuable time to contribute to the T. F. Torrance Theological Fellowship by working on the Participatio editorial team!

That team consists of the following roles:
Editor, Todd Speidell (Contact)
Volume or Issue editors (vary) work with the general editor, Todd Speidell, on a particular issue or volume.
Copy editors (volunteers welcomed!) assist the issue editors in ensuring conformity with the style guide.
Production editors, Kerry Magruder and Brent Purkaple, mount the finished contributions on the website.

To help you get started, this page will orient you to some of the most important aspects of the editorial workflow. Refer back to this page again just as a refresher. Let us know how to make it more clear and helpful. Thank you for your patience.

Participatio tab

The Participatio tab provides access to the Participatio section of the website. You can also reach it by entering "" in your browser, which redirects to the same landing page. The Participatio section is rich, with more pages than you might expect; indeed, it links out into the bibliography section of the website, so that one may navigate to or from the Participatio section in thousands of ways.

The higher levels of the Participatio section are organized using Drupal's "book" feature. Look in the right sidebar for a table of contents. Explore every page of the Participatio "book" so that you're oriented with the scope and nature of the Participatio site.

Style Guide

You can find the Style Guide easily under the Participatio tab. Best to familiarize yourself with it asap. It is the lynchpin for the editorial workflow. Read it alongside the Submission Guidelines page, which provides a time-saving template. Make sure your authors are familiar with this Style Guide. The earlier they adopt the template in the writing process, the easier it will go for both them and you. Documents submitted that are not in compliance with the Style Guide may be returned to the authors for correction.

It is up to the issue editors to make sure that the Style Guide is followed for all contributions.

If you have questions or suggestions about the Style Guide, be sure to discuss them with the production editors (Kerry and Brent) and the general editor (Todd).

The Issue Page

The editorial workflow will all make sense with practice but may be confusing unless you keep three types of pages distinct in your mind: the issue page, the online draft, and the individual article workflow page. Let's consider these in order, starting with the issue page.

On the Participatio tab, you can see links to the landing pages for each published issue or volume. Before publication, the landing page exists in a proto-form as an "issue page." This issue page is accessible only to the editorial team, and only when you're logged in. To find it again in the future, there is a link on the Call for Papers / Forthcoming Issues page in the Participatio tab.

If you go to the "Call for Papers / Forthcoming Issues" page (in the Participatio section), you will see that a forthcoming issue may have a link to its own issue page.

The issue page is a table of contents for the forthcoming volume. Each article is to be listed on the issue page, along with a link to its individual article workflow page — where editorial comments can be made about what still needs to be done, etc.

An issue page is like the grand central station. From here any member of the editorial team may catch a train to the separate article page for any article in the issue, and to its online draft. Authors cannot now board these trains; this page is not publicly accessible.

Online draft

The production editors will create an online draft at the request of the issue editors. As with Google docs, each article is mounted on the cloud in an editable version so that all the editors working on an article may always access and edit the current version, even simultaneously, with no email exchange of docs necessary. It is made using Apple's cloud version of the Pages app which supports more formatting features than Google docs. Unlike with Google docs, this cloud version supports the styling and formatting needed for publication. Take some time to explore the different controls and settings. Ask Brent and Kerry for help if needed.

Typically, editors would ask reviewers to send their general assessments to the editors by email before putting the article online. Reviewers should post online only those comments that they wish to be seen by the author. The online article is where the editorial team and even authors themselves can make final changes to an article.

Editors, reviewers, copy editors, and authors may add comments as needed on any part of the article. Once the draft is online, any word docs that were emailed back and forth are set aside. Editors may share the link for any online draft with the author and/or reviewers. Reviewers may be given the link to the article here, or given a downloaded version.

Article Workflow page

Just as the issue page eventually becomes the landing page for that volume, there is a proto-page for each article that will eventually become the published bibliography page for the article. This article workflow page helps us document and manage the different stages on the way through the production pipeline. Here is where editors can leave comments about articles, note reviewers' comments, and sign-off on any article when it is ready to publish.

Click here to see a sample article workflow page. On that page you can see sample tracking info for stages in the editorial workflow. The article's bibliographic information is at the top. The editorial comments are in the main center column, further down, underneath the all-caps heading "PARTICIPATIO EDITOR - ARTICLE WORKFLOW."

Editors: you are under no obligation to use this tracking system if you prefer to manage the process yourself. This is simply one method to facilitate communication and documentation in the management of the project.

Issue Proof

The issue proof is an online editable document of the entire issue, containing all the approved online drafts assembled into a whole, preceded by the issue's front matter and table of contents. Allow at least a month for the production editors to create this unified issue proof after the issue editors and the general editor (Todd) sign off on all the copy-edited publication-ready versions of the individual articles as ready to publish. When the Issue Proof is made ready, the authors, issue editors, and Todd will sign off again before it is published. This is the last opportunity to review, revise, and make changes. Once this Issue Proof is approved by all concerned, publication should occur with little delay.

Cover Page Image and Other Images

It is not necessary to have a cover page image, but there is an option to do so. The issue editors may keep this possibility in mind when reviewing article drafts, in order to solicit suggestions from authors about possible images related to their contributions.

Perhaps an article in the issue refers to a photograph or a photographed object. For instance, the volume on the Wesleyan Tradition has a photo with this caption: 

Thomas Torrance (1871-1959), T. F. Torrance’s father, before going to China, with friends “at Missionary College.” For discussion see p. 4. Photograph courtesy Torrance family; original now in The Thomas F. Torrance Manuscript Collection, Special Collections, Princeton Theological Seminary Library.

Or perhaps the issue may be represented by an out-of-copyright work of art on the cover. For instance, the cover of the volume on Kierkegaard displays an out-of-copyright portrait. 

Requirements for a cover photo include:

  1. the name of the artist or photographer or creator of the image;
  2. the title of the work of art and date; 
  3. the museum or owner of the object to whom attribution can be made; and
  4. the image is not restricted by copyright.

With respect to copyright, 95 years is usually the cut-off. If we have our own photo that one of us took of a pre-1920’s work of art, we’re good to go, although we would still want to give attribution to the museum or the owner of the art. So, for instance, we could use my photo of Masaccio’s expulsion from the Garden or Trinity (crucifixion), but not necessarily someone else’s, unless they release their photo through Creative Commons. Thankfully, most of the images on Wikipedia are released via a Creative Commons license. A Creative Commons license is sufficient for us, but we cannot publish copyrighted images, nor archival materials, without written permission for "global, media-neutral, unrestricted access." It is the responsibility of authors and issue editors to obtain such permission statements, if necessary.

The same requirements pertain to images used in the body of an article. With digital publication, there is no surcharge on the use of images as is often the case in print publications. This freedom may offer a real advantage for an author to choose to publish in Participatio over a traditional print venue. We can publish as many images as we wish, consistent with the requirements as stated above. Alert authors to this possibility at an early stage in the writing process.