Writing for Journal Publication

One of my colleagues has requested that several of us come to a graduate class and talk about our experiences with getting published in journals.

To prepare for that, I went back through this blog to look for relevant posts. This post contains some distilled information, some links, and some ruminations based on the discussion in the class.

In November 2009, about a year after I started trying to get published, I wrote a post on my publication/rejection record for my most recent work.
5 papers submitted, 2 accepted, 2 rejected, 1 pending
I try to be very careful in placing my work where it is most likely to get accepted. Even with that, my acceptance rate was a 2:3 ratio. (There were also numbers for creative pieces included in the original post.)

From my CV (and old CVs):
11 journal articles published
6 book reviews
2 chapters (2 others were accepted and not published)
(3 encyclopedia articles accepted but never published–Based on my experience, then, encyclopedia articles are not worth doing.)

At one point I wanted to include on my CV a section labeled “Not Published Due to Recession.”

My experience:
In the last 15 months…
Writing about Writing
Publications and Research
Working on a Revision
4 Ways to Write a Paper in a Hurry

Successful academic writing information:
Good Advice for Successful Academic Research and Writing
Style in Academic Writing
Don’t Get Too Attached

Good advice:
On Publishing
On Writing Book Reviews

Relevant links:
330-word guide to writing book proposals
the down-and-dirty article

Sources for CFPs:
UPenn
H-Net

I have also written 2 other articles I didn’t submit. One would probably have been published, but the other probably would not have been. Why didn’t I submit either one?

The first one was on a topic I was (at the time) thinking I needed to quit working on. I should still have submitted the article. I eventually revised the work and submitted it to a journal. If I had sent it in at the time, however, it would already be published, whereas right now it is in the submission process.

The second one was written for a presentation and the possibility of publication. However, for it to have been worth being published I would have had to have done a lot more work on it and it was a “niche” topic that was interesting to the convention I presented at, but less likely to be publishable. It also wouldn’t advance the work I want/need to do, so I am letting that go.

The work I have already put in on the second possibility is not worthless, however, because the process of considering how I could get it done in the limited time available to me (and researching what work I needed to do to make it “complete”) gave me ideas and resources for work that is within the purview of my interests and area.

I have written at least 17 other full articles that were not accepted. Unlike what I should have done, what my colleagues said to do, I have not looked for other places for those to be accepted and gone full-bore forward with the work. Having sat in on the class, I will go back through those works and consider if there is potential in the works–both are other publication sites possibilities and will this work that I’ve already done serve to advance the work I am already doing and will continue to do as I have narrowed my interests/focus.

I hope that this post offers a window into writing as academics because writing is such a large part of the work.

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