Magazines » Model Railroading - March 1991 » Page 5

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March 1991 - Page 5

S. S. Danielsen, Nick Siegel
General Manager


Pam Greenberg

Executive Editor

Randall B. Lee

Production Manager

Behind the Scenes
ave you ever given any thought to what goes into the preparation of an article for publication? Just so you ' l l have a little better understanding of the process, I ' ll share a few experiences I 've had while preparing articles for Model Railroading d uring the past few months. Let me start by saying that I offer my apologies to the contributors I am about to "victimize." My comments are offered to give you, the reader, a keener insight into what I do as editor and to provide some assistance for any potential authors. After an article is received, the first step is to determine if the material is suitable for publication. As soon after receiv ing a manuscript as is possible (depending upon approaching dead lines), I give it a cursory skimming. With the readers' interests in mind, two things are considered at this time: S ubject matter-Is i t interesting? Is it infonnative? I s it relevant? I s it practical? Q uality-Is i t well written? Is it thorough? Are photos and graphics acceptable? Is it accurate? How much work will be required to get it ready for publication? A fter this qu ick rev iew, an art icle fal l s i nto one of three categories: accepted, rejected or ''I ' l l have to give this more thought." The main reason an article would be rejected at this point wou ld be because it was clearly not appropriate for M odel Rail roadil/g. A n example of an article I rejected a few months back was a Christmas fan tasy about a lonesome modeler who had an encounter with the ghost of a former owner of a hobby shop on Christmas eve. Although I found it entertaining, it didn't fulfill my other requirements. Many articles will be accepted after this quick review. The work of authors I work with regularly (and whose work I am fami l iar and comfortable with) usually fits into this category. Authors who are unknown to me can still be accepted at this stage if their work meets my expectations. Larry Puckett fits into the latter category. He was unknown to me until recently, but his articles spoke for themselves. An article placed in the 'TII-have-to-give-this-some-more-thought" category may be there for one or more of several reasons. Here is an example of an article that currently fits into this category. It is a historical piece about pre-Civil War rai l roading in the Northeast and a visit to a long-abandoned rai l road tunnel under the streets of New York. On the plus side, it is interesting, well-written and provides information not com monly available. On the minus side, the photos taken underground are poor and I don 't know of many (make that a ny) modelers who model the I 840s. How would you vote? Sometimes I may feel the art icle needs more work , better photos or should be revamped before being published. Depending on the circumstances, an article may be returned for this work, or I may end up doing it in the editing process. When the quality of photos isn't quite up to snuff, I ' l l usually want the author to retake them i f possible. If those photos were taken during a construction project, however, they usually can' t be redone. (This is my rationale for having Bruce Nail do the photography series.) Sometimes an article "grows" from something small into something much grander. An example is Vern French ' s art icle on N & W tender assignments. He originally intended a short "sidebar" article about this for his Williamson series. I suggested doing a separate piece. He responded by gathering volumes of infonnation that ended up fill ing a 2" thick file folder and requiring hours of compilation to prepare for publication. This month ' s article on modeling the circus-train specialty cars ended up being a joint project between Bill Hill and mysel f when I decided it would be more useful to our readers if we could provide more accurate dimensional information than Bill had when he built his models. I hope this has given you a little better feel for how M RG c omes into existence each month. As you can see, it is a cooperative effort that makes it possible. I f you ever have questions or want some input on how to prepare an article, feel free to give me a call.

LaDonna T. Vaughan

Scott Anderson, Ron Bearden, Vern French, Patrick Lawson, Jim Mansfield, George Melvin, Rich Picariello, Larry J. Puckett, Larry E. Smith, W. Terry Stuart
Circulation Manager

Contributing Editors

S. Tolve


TypeTronics, Inc.


Kristin Doughty

Model Railroading is published 12 times a year by Rocky Mountain Publishing, Inc., 2929 Blake St., Denver, CO 80205, (303) 292-0124. Price per single copy is $2.95 in U S. A. Subscriptions are $30.00 in the U.S.A. or $38.50 in Canada (or for eign) - payable in U.S funds. Unsolicited manuscripts or photographs should be accom panied by return postage and Rocky Mountain Publishing, Inc. assumes no responsibility for Ihe loss or damage of such material. No part of this publication may be reprinted without written per mission from the publishers. Printed in U.S.A. The information contained in the various arti cles in this magazine is presented in good faith, but no warranty is given, no results guaranteed, nor is any freedom from any patent or copyright to be inferred. Since we have no control over the phYSical conditions surrounding the application of information in this magazine, Rocky Mountain Publishing, Inc. and the various authors and edi tors disclaim any liability for untoward results and/or for any physical injury incurred by using the information herein.

Copyright 1991 by Rocky Mountain Publishing, Inc.

For advertising information contact Pam Green berg at 800-736-0427 or 303-292-0124.

Subscriptions and Book Orders
F or subscriptions and/or book orders, please send inquiries to Rocky Mountain Publishing, attention S. Tolve, 2929 Blake Street, Denver, Colorado 80205 or call 1-800-736-0427 outside metro Denver area. In metro Denver call (303) 292-0124. Visa or Mastercard accepted.

Model Railroading (ISSN 0199-1914) is pub lished 12 times a year at $30.00 per year in U.S.A., $38.50 in Canada, by Rocky Mountain Publishing, Inc. at 2929 Blake Street, Denver, Colorado 80205. 2nd Class postage paid at Den ver, Colorado. Canadian Second Class Permit #9591.

Postmaster send address changes to Rocky Mounta,in Publishing, Inc., 2929 Blake Street, Denver, Colorado 80205.


R andy Lee Executive Editor

M arch 1 9 9 1

M odel R a i l ro a d i n g


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