Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Joy of Sending Your Book to the Publisher

Last week, I uploaded the finished manuscript of  my latest book, "Competing on Supply Chain Quality: A Network Economics Perspective,"  to my publisher's (Springer's) website. The book is co-authored with Dong "Michelle" Li, my former doctoral student, who is now an Assistant Professor at the College of Business at Arkansas State University.

The book will appear in the Springer Series in Supply Chain Management, whose Founding Editor is Professor Chris Tang of the UCLA Anderson School of Management. He has been very supportive throughout this project and we acknowledge him warmly in the book.

The book is 400 pages and represents about half a decade of our work on developing supply chain network models with quality, as well as prices or quantities,  as strategic variables, of manufacturers, suppliers, or firms that are outsourced to, as well as freight service providers. The book deals with critical issues such as information asymmetry, make or buy decisions, and supplier selection, and also demonstrates how to identify and rank the most important suppliers to a firm's supply chain and to the supply chain network economy. 

Completing the book was a big task since some of the final writing was done while I was in Gothenburg, Sweden as a Visiting Professor this summer and also speaking at many conferences and Michelle was in Amherst,  getting ready for her move to assume her Assistant Professorship position.

The feeling of accomplishment (and relief) in getting the book finished and even ahead of schedule is very rewarding.

I enjoy writing technical books since one can put a stamp on a topic that one is very passionate about and integrate the existing research and literature in a fresh way. Sometimes I am asked what my legacy will be and I hope that it does include my books. Colleagues from different parts of the world have told me that when a new book of mine arrives in their offices, students often disappear with it, which I find to be a great compliment.

Submitting the manuscript and all the chapter files and jpgs to a Springer website was easy and smooth and I was reminded of  how several of my other books in earlier days were shipped off to the publisher. For example, several of my early books, including my first, published in 1993: "Network Economics: A Variational Inequality Approach," which is my most highly cited publication according to Google Scholar,  and which also had a second edition in 1999, were submitted on special paper in camera-ready form and obviously mailed. Kluwer was my first publisher and then the company was bought by Springer.

Several of my books have had disasters associated with the shipment and, so far, luckily, the latest one has had a peaceful arrival and acknowledgment and is now in production, which is thrilling.
My book, "Supernetworks: Decision-Making for the Information Age," published in 2002, which I wrote with June Dong of SUNY Oswego, who was my first female PhD student, was mailed to the publisher, Edward Elgar Publishing in Cheltenham, England, just before 9/11. It ended up during the terror attacks and aftermath at JFK airport before the airspace opened up again.

And, my book, "Networks Against Time: Supply Chain Analytics for Perishable Products," which was published by Springer in 2013, was emailed just before Superstorm Sandy struck on October 29, 2012 to the Springer offices in NYC, which were flooded (they are located on Spring Street). I could not reach my Springer editor for days. This book was written with Min Yu of the University of Portland and Amir H. Masoumi of Manhattan College (both of whom were my former doctoral students), and the other Professor Nagurney, my husband, Ladimer S. Nagurney of the University of Hartford.

There is something special about seeing a book that you have written, hot off the press, holding it in your hands and looking through it (and hoping all the pages are there and nothing is missing).

So, whatever your legacy will be, I do hope that mine, in part, will be the books that I have written and still hope to write.  Even in this era of so many distractions and shortened attention spans, books, I believe, can make a contribution and a difference.