Quick Guide: Building an Anthology

Quick Guide By Susana Christie, Developmental Editor Building an Anthology

A well-crafted anthology is an opportunity to expose students to a variety of viewpoints, voices, and sources of information. Choosing and organizing readings is an exciting process and allows you to build a text that perfectly suits a course without the challenges implicit in writing a fully original manuscript.

The foundational approach for each anthology can be boiled down to the following: choose readings, organize readings, and then frame the selections with original material that adds context, prepares students to read, and enhances the learning experience. Examples of such original matter include introductions, discussion questions, and conclusions.

This quick guide contains recommended steps for developing a classroom anthology. Not every step is required—or even recommended—to effectively build an anthology; we understand every subject matter, book, and author are different, so processes and approaches will vary.

  • If you’d prefer a light framework for your anthology, we suggest you follow Steps 1–3, then stop.
  • If you’d prefer more involvement and a medium framework for your anthology, we suggest you follow Steps 1–5. (Steps 4 and 5 will provide students pre- and post-unit material.)
  • If you wish to be highly involved and would like to produce an anthology that allows adopting professors increased flexibility in teaching and assigning coursework, you may want to consider following Steps 1–7. (The original material developed in Steps 6 and 7 makes it possible for an instructor to choose different readings to emphasize during a term based on the interests or composition of a particular class.)
  • If you’d like to focus on only visual support for the readings, we recommend you follow Steps 1, 2, 3, 8, and 9.

There is no right or wrong way to develop an anthology. However, it’s a good idea to form a development strategy early in the publishing process. This will enable you to map out your book’s development timetable, identifying key delivery dates that will keep everything moving at an efficient pace. It will also allow your project editor and the rest of the Cognella team to better manage their time and publishing tasks to support the development of your book.