Writing a journal article

FIRST STEPS

Before you write an article for publication in a journal, there are a few basic things that are good to think about.

Content: You need to know what it is that you are planning to write about. Once you know what you want to write about, there is still the question of how to best present the content. Many papers with solid content could have been published in much more highly ranked journals if they were presented slightly differently. The issue in such cases is not so much the main content as such, but how it is prioritized, structured, at which length and level of depth it is communicated, how it is embedded in current debates, and how it is framed.

Your target journal: You need to understand your target journal – what will appeal to the readers, to the editors, and what kinds of particular policies does the journal have. There are papers that are very good but are rejected because they are submitted to the ‘wrong’ journal. Moreover, there are brilliant papers that are accepted in a good journal – but then nobody reads them! That can happen if the paper is a poor fit relative to what the journal overall is about. Study your journals a bit, flick through recent tables of contents, find out something about the editors, read how the journal presents itself in its ‘scope’ section, and so on. You will find that the same content might fit quite different journals, depending on how it is structured and presented.

Once you have thought about these ‘big picture issues’, you are ready to work through some of the following suggestions, including:

Leave a Comment »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: