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Ten top tips for successful publication HEA-ICS / Engineering workshop: Writing for publication 7th December 2007 Miggie Pickton Research Support Specialist.

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Presentation on theme: "Ten top tips for successful publication HEA-ICS / Engineering workshop: Writing for publication 7th December 2007 Miggie Pickton Research Support Specialist."— Presentation transcript:

1 Ten top tips for successful publication HEA-ICS / Engineering workshop: Writing for publication 7th December 2007 Miggie Pickton Research Support Specialist University of Northampton

2 1 - Use your colleagues Colleagues can help by: –Bouncing your ideas around –Proof-reading your work –Being critical friends –Becoming co-authors Colleagues also have contacts that edit journals and organise conferences and workshops. Think outside your current organisation - who do you know from library school, previous employment or special interest groups?

3 2 - Pick the right outlet Your work is more likely to be accepted if it matches the publishers need. Is the subject area appropriate? Look at previous contributions, can you see how your work will fit in? Can you add anything to what has been written before? Look out for calls for papers - especially for conferences and special issues of journals. If you have any doubts about the suitability of your work for this outlet then contact the editor/organiser first.

4 3 - Follow guidelines Check out information for authors or presenters, theyll often give guidance on –Structure –Focus –Word count –House style (e.g. fonts, spacing) –Referencing system Knowing what is expected could save you a lot of time later

5 4 - Planning, planning, planning Consider writing the abstract first (helps clarify your thoughts and shows you where you are going - you can always change it later). Have a plan and stick to it – a clear structure, with signposts, will help both the writer and the reader. Tell a story. If you are daunted by the whole task then write it in bits (following your plan). If writing doesnt flow, dont worry, just get something down and revisit it later.

6 5 - Remember your audience Who are they? Practitioner, researchers, academics, policy makers? What will they know already and what will you have to explain? Use language / jargon appropriately Adjust your writing style to the format and occasion (research article, conference paper, poster, book review….) Writing a paper is like tailoring a CV for a particular job – basic content is the same but different bits get emphasised

7 6 - Short and sweet Be succinct, short sentences make more impact. Be ruthless – if it doesnt add to the story then cut it out.

8 7 - Time management Allow time to –Plan –Write –Check –Think –Make coffee, eat chocolate, paint nails… –Get feedback –Re-write (but not endlessly) The day job will almost certainly get in the way

9 8 - Copyright Dont give away your copyright - choose a publisher that allows authors to retain copyright Consider a Creative Commons licence (http://creativecommons.org/license/)http://creativecommons.org/license/ Put a copy of your work in your open access institutional repository

10 9 - Backup your work Keep at least three copies of your work –on your institutional network –on your own hard drive –on a memory stick or backup CD – it to yourself Consider saving older versions of your work - especially if you are having to cut it down to a specific word count.

11 10 - Just do it! Dont procrastinate Have faith in your own ability Grab that opportunity Get on with it… NOW!

12 References Theres plenty of advice available in your local library, some that Ive used include: –Albert, T. (1997) Winning the publications game. Abingdon: Radcliffe Medical Press. –Hall, G.M. (2003) How to write a paper. London: BMJ books. –Wager, E. (2005) Getting research published: an A to Z of publication strategy. Abingdon: Radcliffe Publishing Ltd. –Wellington, J. (2003) Getting published: a guide for lecturers and researchers. London: RoutledgeFalmer. Find them at Dewey or LOC PN161.W


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