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Information for Authors in GSL Memoirs

Key points to consider before you submit 

Preparing your paper

Guidelines for preparing text and illustrations can be found in the box to the right of this page. Those apply to all GSL publications. Detail of page size, colour and Open Access costs, which are specific to this book series are below.


We welcome papers from authors in all countries, but if you are not fluent in English please seek assistance before submission. There are resources for authors here, some of which are written in other languages.


We expect all authors, reviewers and editors to comply with the Society’s Code of Publishing Ethics. Please ensure that you have read, understood and complied with this, particularly the sections on authors and sample collection. You will be asked to confirm this when you submit your paper.

Submission or publication elsewhere is not acceptable while your paper is under consideration for the Special Publication. Dual submission and publication are serious breaches of widely accepted publishing ethics.

The Society is now gathering information on the role of each author on submitted papers. We are using the CRediT taxonomy developed by CASRAI: This information is for internal use and is not currently published. 

The Society’s policy on corrections and retractions can be found in the CrossMark Policy.

Publishing agreement and terms of use

If your paper is accepted you (or your employer) will be required to grant the Society an exclusive licence to publish and accept the terms and conditions for use of your final PDF.
  • You can reuse your figures and data without permission
  • You can post your original version at any time
  • You can post the refereed manuscript version 12 months after publication
  • You can pay to make your paper Open Access (see below)
  • You cannot post the final PDF or proofs at any time unless you have paid for Open Access

More information on the licence can be found in the Copyright Policy.

More information on reusing your material can be found on the permissions page.


If you have not already done so, we encourage you to register for an ORCID iD. You can use your iD to log into our submission system. More information can be found on


Most Memoirs use Online Submission at You need an invitation from the editor in order to be able to submit.
  • Before submitting a manuscript, it is recommended that you have the following to hand:
  • all authors' first, middle names/initials and last names
  • all authors' email addresses
  • the role of each contributor in preparing the paper (see:
  • manuscript files in Word, RTF or Latex formats with continuous line numbering
  • tables in XLS, CSV or DOC formats
  • figures/images in TIF, EPS, PDF or JPG formats (see note on file size)
  • supplementary data files
  • covering letter (which the referees will see)
  • abstracts of any related papers that you have in press or in review

It is a good idea to put all your files in one folder (you can upload a Zip file to the new site).

Note that there is a file-size limit of 5 MB in the new system to keep the merged PDFs manageable for editing and review. If your files are bigger, please make smaller versions for review and we will request the high-resolution files off-system when your paper is accepted.

The submission package will guide you through the processes for submitting your files and confirmation/approval. The final stage can be slow, so please be prepared to save and revisit.
  • Papers should be arranged as follows:
  • Title: brief and specific; followed by name(s) and address(es) of authors(including email address of corresponding author)
  • Abstract: this must be intelligible without reference to the paper, and should not exceed 200 words. Figures are not allowed in the Abstract
  • Main body of paper: subdivided into 1st, 2nd and 3rd order headings; omit heading 'Introduction'
  • Acknowledgements and funding
  • Appendices: see Supplementary Data
  • References: in full; authors' names must be keyed as capitals and lower case
  • Tables
  • Figure captions
  • Figures (5 MB maximum for new system) in separate files

Page format

The final printed page size is A4: 297 mm deep by 210 mm wide. Maximum final size of illustrations: 254 mm deep by 179 mm wide. Single column width: 85 mm. It is possible to have 1½ column figures (120 mm) figures with the caption at the side. There are about 1000 words per page. Each chapter must have its own reference list.

Colour charges

The Publishing House encourages the use of colour where figures will be substantially enhanced. However, it is necessary to make a charge covering all additional costs incurred.

Currently charges are £460 for the first figure in a paper and £80 for each additional figure in a paper.

If you wish to have a fold-out figures, please contact the Commissioning Editor

You can have colour in the online version at no cost provided that we can use the same file as for printing in black and white (i.e. we can just switch the colour off in the print version).

Open Access publishing

Authors may choose to make their article fully Open Access (sometimes called ‘Gold Open Access’) on payment of an Article Processing Charge. For Memoirs the APC is £1600/$3200. Articles where the first author or at least half the authors are Fellows of the Geological Society are entitled to a £250 discount. There is a 50% discount for articles where all the authors are at a research institution in a developing country. More information on the Society’s policy can be found at

You can select Open Access when you submit your article online. You do not need to pay until after your article is accepted. There will be a link to the payment authorization form in the acceptance letter.

If you require Open Access but cannot pay the APC, the Geological Society also supports ‘Green Open Access’, where you can post your final post-refereed version of the article to a website or repository 12 months after the online publication date.

Authors must not post a typeset proof or final version to any website or repository unless the article is fully Open Access.
There is no discount for whole books being Open Access.

Citation Data for Memoirs

GSL Memoirs and most other books published by the Society from 2008 onwards (with incomplete coverage from 2005) will be included in the Thomson Reuters Book Citation Index or the Conference Proceedings Citation Index, which are components of Web of Science. Citation counts for individual articles will be available, and the counts will be included in an author’s h-index.

Refereeing and editing

The volume editors will send your paper to at least two referees. The volume editors will handle the papers through the reviewing and scientific editing procedure. We expect the reviewing and editing procedure to take about five to six months - but this is dependent upon referees and schedules of the scientific editors. If there are no volume editors, the review process will be handled by the Commissioning Editor and Society Books Editor.


Discussions on papers in GSL books can be submitted to an appropriate GSL journal. The editorial board of the journal will be responsible for review and acceptance. Discussions should add something to the debate and not be just an additional observation.


The Publishing House will start work on the book only when the all the papers are finalized. A Production Editor will be assigned, who will write to the authors notifying them of when proofs are due and if there are any problems or costs to be incurred. The paper will be copyedited and then sent to an external typesetter. You will be instructed on how to access your proofs. We do not generally send revised proofs to authors. Memoirs are published online and as hard- or soft-back books (depending on the length).

What do authors receive?

This varies according to volume and will have been agreed with the volume editor or authors upon acceptance of the proposal. However, in all cases corresponding authors receive a free internet-quality PDF, which they can forward to their co-authors.

We will notify authors about options for obtaining print copies shortly before publication.

Keeping in touch

GSL produces a regular author email newsletter (about 6 times each year). If you would like to receive this, please contact our marketing department ( You do not have to be a published author to sign up. You can unsubscribe at any time.