After a manuscript has moved into production, the copyediting and design process generally takes ten to twelve months. Several variables affect a production schedule, including the length of the manuscript, the availability of an appropriate copyeditor, the complexity of the book's design, and the author's ability to complete his or her contributions to the process.
The managing editor will oversee your book as it moves through each step of production and design and will arrange for your manuscript to be copyedited and proofread, coordinate your review of the copyedited manuscript and page proofs, incorporate corrections, and track the book's schedule throughout. As the author, you are responsible for reviewing the copyedited manuscript, proofreading the typeset pages, and compiling an index. The managing editor will provide instructions on managing these tasks and can suggest freelance indexers if you choose to hire someone to help you with this project.
The designer will design the book's interior and cover. Although the production department makes final decisions about a book's design, the designers are amenable to receiving author suggestions for cover images. Please let your editor know if you have a particular image or idea in mind, and he or she will pass the information along to the designer. The designer will share the cover design with you before the book goes to the printer.