GETTING IT RIGHT… THE FIRST TIME Final Steps in Manuscript Submission and…BeyondNLN Writing Retreat * San Francisco, CA * April 2012
YOU’VE DONE YOURDUE DILIGENCEAnd written a draft. The end is in sight…
The Final Checklist• Information for Authors is just that…information. Go back and double-check: • Length • Format: spacing, margins, font • References: format, number • Abstract: number of words, format (structured or not) • Title page: format, information to include • Tables: on separate page or embedded, how many • Figures: format, legends, separate page or file • Copyright transfer form • Permission(s) to use copyrighted information
References• Verify that all information is correct • Pubmed single citation matcher is a quick way to do this• Include issue numbers• Include DOI numbers if available• Make sure that they are formatted according to the style of the journal
Copyright Transfer Form• Needs to be signed by all authors• CIN Policy: manuscript not sent for review until the CTS is on file• CIN: Okay to fax the form; can also scan and save as a PDF• With this form, you are transferring copyright of the article to the publisher • If you want to make copies for future use, will need to obtain permission • May be able to have a copyright exception for specific material, such as an illustration of a conceptual model that you have developed• If you have written the paper on work time, may need to check regarding who should sign the form (generally more of an issue for nurses who work in hospitals, not academia)
Permission• If you include previously copyrighted material, will need to obtain permission for its use • Figures, illustrations, tables, research instruments• Write to the copyright holder for permission—this will usually be the publisher• A fee may be charged for the permission • Ask who will be responsible to pay; it is usually the author • May range from $25 to $500 or more• Need to include the permission with your submission• “Fair Use”: may quote up to 10% of a document before you need to ask for permission • Always need permission for poetry and song lyrics
The Submission Process• Most (all?) journals have an online process• Give yourself time: a few hours • It may not take that long but it is better not to be rushed and stressed• Review the requirements first to determine what you need to submit and in what format • For CIN: required: separate title page, manuscript file, and copyright transfer form • Optional: cover letter, figures, tables• Authors must register at the site to submit• For Editorial Manager journals: user database is not shared so must complete registration process for different journals.
When a Manuscript is Received• CIN Process (and I suspect this is pretty universal) • Technical check to make sure all required elements have been submitted and manuscript is in correct format • Manuscript may be returned for revision (or worse, rejected) if it does not meet journal standards • Sent for peer review to two or three reviewers • This process may take 6 to 8 weeks • When peer review process is complete, editor makes decision
Peer Review• Most journals: three reviewers; may be up to six• Selected for expertise in content, research, statistics, methods• Blinded process • Double blind • Author(s) blinded to reviewers • Not blinded at all• Reviewers are asked to comment on content and not act as copy editors• Reviewer comments are sent to author(s) as written
Editorial decision• Reject • Not suitable for the journal • “Bad” science • CIN: invitation to resubmit after a complete re-write• Accept • Go celebrate!• Revise • Most common
Revisions• Revise and re-submit for re-review by peer reviewers• Revise and re-submit for review by the editor• Tentatively accept pending revisions and approval by the editor
Making Revisions• Sort out the comments from reviewers • Which are the same? • Which are different? • Are there any that contradict each other?• Attend to each comment • Make the revision or, if not, why not?• Write a document in which you enumerate the comments and respond to each one • Do not include identifying information on this as it may go back to the peer reviewers • It’s fine to say, “Thank you for this helpful comment” once or twice but not a dozen times!• Follow journal guidelines for how to indicate you have made revisions: track changes, comments, or a separate letter
During the Revision Process• Don’t get discouraged—making changes is easier than writing the first draft!• Don’t take the comments personally—they are intended to help you improve your manuscript, not make you feel like a bad person. • If the comments really sting, put the manuscript aside for a few days, then revisit and get to work.• Don’t withdraw your manuscript and submit it somewhere else!• Meet requested deadlines. If that’s not possible, ask for an extension. • Many times, the due date is generated automatically by the system.
After Acceptance• Manuscript will go into production—may be several months away. • Keep the editorial office informed of any address changes.• You will receive “page proofs” (usually a PDF) and be asked to make corrections. • AQ—author query: things you need to respond to • Last chance to update information (essential only) • No re-writing at this point • Will have a short turnaround: 48 to 72 hours• For the future • Save your acceptance letter for your tenure file (editorial office may not be able to provide this to you) • Start thinking about your next article!
Heard Just the Other Day (in my office)• “I’ve got the first draft of my manuscript almost written. I think I’m going to send it to Nursing Research.” • Let me tell you about Journal Due Diligence… • “I was at a conference last month. Someone told me to aim high and suggested I send it to JAMA.” • Let me tell you about the Pendulum Phenomenon… • “I’ve heard if you do a post-doc with ‘Dr. Famous Person,’ she insists on being first author on all manuscripts.” • Let’s talk about authorship responsibility… • “In my dossier to the tenure committee, I said I’ll have four manuscripts published by next fall.” • Let’s talk about a realistic timeline…
Leslie’s Favorite Wacky Stories• The famously formatted revision• The “Love, Mary” letter• The drunk author who screamed at Leslie after rejection• The irate author who accused Leslie of “thwarting science” (moral: don’t argue with a rejection letter)• Withdrawal of a manuscript at the eleventh hour• “Because you didn’t respond to my query letter, I didn’t receive a grant.”