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Publication without tears: Tips for aspiring authors - Emma Coonan

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Presented at LILAC 2016

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Publication without tears: Tips for aspiring authors - Emma Coonan

  1. 1. Publication without tears Tips for aspiring authors EMMA COONAN JOURNAL OF INFORMATION LITERACY
  2. 2. • Down the rabbit hole? • Framing your article • On writing
  3. 3. Have you submitted an article for publication? Do you edit or peer review already? You might enjoy this Scholarly Kitchen article if so.
  4. 4. Down the rabbit hole Managing editor: Cathie Jackson Book review editor: Ian Hunter
  5. 5. Articles should be … • Research-informed and evidence-based • Designed around an arguable research question • Contextualised with reference to previous and current advances in IL thinking • Methodologically robust with a demonstrable research design Publication requirements
  6. 6. Articles should be … • Research-informed and evidence-based • Designed around an arguable research question • Contextualised with reference to previous and current advances in IL thinking • Methodologically robust with a demonstrable research design – more about this later! Publication requirements
  7. 7. • Relevance to the journal’s remit • Originality and interest to our audience • Title and abstract • Method • Use of literature and referencing • Clarity of expression and structure Peer review criteria
  8. 8. • Relevance to the journal’s remit – research- or practice-based investigations into information literacy • Originality and interest to our audience - useful contribution to knowledge or good practice? • Title and abstract – appropriate wording and length and informative? • Approach and method – appropriate? rigorous? • Use of literature and referencing – good analysis of literature? Good referencing or signs of plagiarism? • Clarity of expression and structure – clear exposition of argument? Logical structure? Spell out acronyms, avoid jargon! Peer review criteria
  9. 9.  Accept for publication without amendment - almost never!  Revisions required  Major revisions required followed by peer review  Decline submission – submit elsewhere Reviewer recommendations
  10. 10. Editor-in-Chief Emma Coonan
  11. 11. • Make a list of all the changes requested • If you can’t or don’t want to meet them, discuss this with Emma • Revise the paper (using Track Changes) and resubmit it • Include cover email describing your changes What to do with reviewer comments
  12. 12. Addressing these changes may unearth other suggested amendments - several rounds of revisions may be required What to do with reviewer comments You might also like this Storify on dealing with the “Ow” factor
  13. 13. • ‘Resubmit’ doesn’t mean ‘Reject’ It’s been known for authors to react as though they’re the same thing • Journals have a specific scope and remit If your article doesn’t fit, our container is the wrong shape! • We are writers too … and we know it sucks to have your writing criticised Remember …
  14. 14. Feedback should be constructive, comprehensive and courteous ... The role of peer reviewer is a privileged one and must be undertaken with empathy and integrity. JIL Author Guidelines
  15. 15.  “help[ed] to make a potentially very scary process a lot more manageable.”  “The author would like to thank …the reviewers, whose comments were invaluable.” Reviewing the reviewers
  16. 16. JIL copyeditors Lizzie Seals Sharon Lawler Helen Bader Lisa Hutchins
  17. 17. JIL Copyeditors’ advice • Use the publication template • Define acronyms and abbreviations on first use • Format your references using the journal’s house style • Ensure all in-text citations are given a full reference at the end, and that all references are cited in the text • Ensure diagrams and images are copyright-cleared and/or attributed
  18. 18. Framing YOUR article Author: You
  19. 19. What is a journal article?
  20. 20. Presentation vs. paper • Length! • Structure – conventional divisions • Tone and register – more formal • Use of evidence – more overt, interwoven throughout • Purpose – original contribution; an investigation, not a description
  21. 21. You might find this blog post useful too.
  22. 22. What could you publish? • Literature review – e.g. Tewell (2015), CIL 9(1) • Action research – e.g. Rothera (2015), JIL 9(2) • Measurable impact of practice – e.g. Hicks (forthcoming), JIL 10(1) Not about what you do but what your students do
  23. 23. Framing YOUR article
  24. 24. Tell your reader … • Context - you’re contributing to a dialogue • Approach and method that underpin the research • Rigour - the validity of your approach and findings • What/why/how of your research
  25. 25. What/why/how • What is your research? • Why are you doing it? • How are you doing it?
  26. 26. What/why/how • What is your research? What questions does it address (or ask)? • Why are you doing it? Why does it matter? What will it change? What interests/frustrates/niggles you about the topic? • How are you doing it? What’s your approach or method? How does it frame your findings? How does it help you mitigate bias?
  27. 27. PinctadamargaritiferaMHNT.CON.2002.893byDidier Descouens,Wikipedia.CCBY-SA4.0
  28. 28. On writing
  29. 29. • Keep focused Pin your hypothesis or question and your what/why/how analysis by your desk. Everything you write is directed towards answering the question. • Flatpack it Dive in wherever you feel you have something to say. Write up the section which comes most naturally and compile the sections later.
  30. 30. • Free-writing Don’t wait until you know what you want to say – get ideas out of your head so you can reflect on and develop them • Join (or start) a writers’ group You can read why I love them in this blog post. • Break it down It’s like eating an elephant!
  31. 31. • It’s iterative Draft, redraft, draft again (and see Lamott on first drafts!) • Find (or bribe) a proofreader This could be a colleague, friend or family member, but always get someone else to read it through! • Read critically to help you write critically Become a reviewer – or ‘buddy up’ with another aspiring author and support each other
  32. 32. http://patthomson.net/ http://explorationsofstyle.com/
  33. 33. Emma Coonan, Editor-in-Chief Journal of Information Literacy e.coonan@uea.ac.uk Twitter: LibGoddess Alice images by John Tenniel (public domain)

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