Author Guidelines

Manuscript Submission

Manuscript submissions for RBM: A Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts, and Cultural Heritage, along with related questions, should be sent to the editor, Richard Saunders, at

Subject Content

RBM is a double blind peer-reviewed journal publishing articles on the theory and practice of library special collections and related fields. For example, the journal will consider items on acquisition and collection development; access to and use of special collections; conservation and preservation; cataloging of special materials; security; fundraising; donor relations; computer applications and the impact of electronic communication and data storage on cultural heritage institutions; exhibition preparation; historical articles; legal and ethical issues; trends in the antiquarian market; and other topics.

Information on publication of reviews is available below.

Manuscript Preparation

In preparing articles to be submitted for publication in RBM, please follow these procedures:

  • Submit original, unpublished articles only. Authors are responsible for the accuracy of the statements and sources in their articles. If the paper has been presented at a conference, identify the conference by name and date in a cover letter. Include the name of the sponsoring organization of the conference.
  • Manuscripts are subject to double-anonymized peer review by a member of the editorial board and at least two external reviewers prior to a publication decision by the editor. Authors see and may respond to reviewers' anonymous comments.  The editor may suggest an author make changes to the text for content, documentation, tone, completeness, or argument prior to a publication decision
  • Articles must be double-spaced. The title, name, and affiliation of the author should precede the text.
  • Articles usually range in length from three thousand to five thousand words, although longer texts are occasionally received.
  • Bibliographical references should be consecutively numbered throughout the manuscript, and should be formatted as footnotes.
  • Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary (supported by Webster's Third International) or the new (second) edition of The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language for spelling and usage; prefer the first spelling if there is a choice. Verify the spelling and accuracy of names in an appropriate reference work.
  • The Chicago Manual of Style, 16th ed. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2010) as authority for capitalization, punctuation, quotations, tables, captions, and all matters of bibliographical style.
  • In general, follow the practices recommended by The Chicago Manual of Style, 16th ed., with these exceptions: cite journal articles according to author's first name or initials, author's surname, title of article, title of journal, volume number, issue number, issue date, and page references. E.g.: Ralph Fabrizio, Ira Kaplan, and Gilbert Teal, "Readability As a Function of the Straightness of Right-Hand Margins," Journal of Typographic Research1.1 (January 1967): 90-95.
  • Format each table and illustration on a separate page. Indicate the desired placement in the text by adding an instruction in parentheses; e.g.: (Insert table 2). Provide a brief caption for each illustration or table. Type all tables double-spaced and follow the examples in The Chicago Manual of Style, 16th ed., in constructing the tables, omitting the vertical lines to indicate columns. Use tables sparingly.
  • Submit digital files for photographs, illustrations, figures, and graphs, and supply information for a credit line if needed. Digital files should be grayscale, TIFF format, and a minimum of 300dpi.


If accepted for publication, the manuscript is generally published from six to nine months after acceptance (depending on the supply of accepted manuscripts). The manuscript will be edited to conform to the style of the journal, and the editor may suggest changes to the author.


RBM reviews new publications pertinent to a wide range of cultural heritage collections. Publishers or readers who would like to suggest resources for review may do so through the Review Suggestion Form. Prospective reviewers may express their interest through the RBM Reviewers Form. If you have any questions, please contact RBM Reviews Editor John Henry Adams at

Author Rights

ACRL, as publisher of RBM, supports copyright retention by submitting authors. For more information on ACRL author agreements, visit the ACRL website. ACRL does not charge author processing fees (APCs) to publish in RBM.


Privacy Statement

The names and email addresses entered in this journal site will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of this journal and will not be made available for any other purpose or to any other party.

ALA Privacy Policy