Making the Grade
The usual cries about missing homework didn't apply to thousands of Florida high school students this year, even though one book publisher was in danger of flunking math class. School administrators throughout the state worried that New York City-based AMSCO, a popular scholastic publisher, wouldn't supply necessary textbooks to more than 15,000 students in several school districts.
With only two weeks to produce, print and ship the much-needed math books, the assignment was a daunting one for AMSCO. That's why, according to Joseph Campanella, AMSCO's director of manufacturing, production and design, the desperate publisher turned to a printer for help. And thanks to Phoenix Color in Hagerstown, MD, AMSCO met the deadline.
The sum of all parts
Because Phoenix runs jobs 24-hours daily for prepress operations mobilized by Silicon Graphics Image servers, the AMSCO design team could begin cover-file submission even before the content was paginated. Via the printer's secure Internet server, Phoenix ColorNet, the digital printing process at the Book Technology Park location began with days to spare.
Campanella says the 8x11˝ covers required a four-color UV process on 10pt. C1S stock. The individual pages were then fit in one-color 50lb. stock, using Timson's Arch 48 press. The resulting books were not only aesthetically pleasing, admits Campanella, but could stand the test of abuse.
Since the initial print run, reorders have already tripled. The digital proofing process allows an order to be estimated, approved and placed as quickly as it takes to log onto the printer's Web browser. Once a new job is submitted to ColorNet, a publisher can open the project and apply changes to specifications without having to resubmit queries, an asset to publishers under deadline.
Earning extra credit
Today, AMSCO currently houses 500 to 700 titles on backlist, printing more than 500,000 textbooks, workbooks and review books annually. And while not every student in Florida may have been excited to see their new math books, their teachers were. Even before first bell, an important lesson was learned—students aren't the only ones expected to school on time—so are their books.