¶ 1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 While quality matters more than quantity, the combination is absolutely delightful. Last week we launched the open peer review phase of Web Writing: Why and How for Liberal Arts Teaching and Learning, a digital book-progress under contract with Michigan Publishing. Between now and October 30th, 2013, four expert reviewers (commissioned by the publisher) and general readers are posting feedback on the manuscript to help shape its direction and revisions. In the first week, 175 comments appeared on our CommentPress site, which allows audiences to respond at the book, page, or paragraph level. Here’s a handful of interesting exchanges between readers and authors that caught my attention:
¶ 2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 Amanda Hagood and Carmel Price received and responded to feedback on their essay, “Sister Classrooms: Blogging Across Disciplines and Campuses,” from Siobhan Senier (on how authors should address student privacy) and Laura Lisabeth (on clarifying “behind the scenes” research and writing assignments).
¶ 4 Leave a comment on paragraph 4 0 Meanwhile, an initial copyediting comment on Alisea Williams McLeod’s essay, “Student Digital Research and Writing on Slavery,” evolved into a substantive dialogue (with Amanda Seligman and Siobhan Senier) about the pedagogical ethics of pulling students outside their comfort zones.
¶ 6 Leave a comment on paragraph 6 1 In the “Introduction” to this volume, Emily Gravett sparked a thoughtful discussion by critiquing the rhetorical framework of the book’s opening argument, accompanied by insightful follow-ups from Kate Singer and Amanda Seligman. Also, buried deep inside the “Editorial Process” section, Kristen Nawrotzki raised interesting questions on whether authors’ own comments play any role in the final essay selection process, and whether scholars need to be socialized to comment in the public realm, rather than the private one. (Disclaimer: Kristen co-edited a related open peer review book with me, and since then I’ve learned that when we disagree, it usually means I’m wrong and she’s right.)
¶ 7 Leave a comment on paragraph 7 0 All of this rich feedback requires more rethinking and rewriting from contributors to the volume (including me). But the open peer review format provides an ideal opportunity for developmental editing, which needs to happen after we’ve written a full draft, but before it’s too late to propose revisions for the final volume.