How to get your paper accepted for publication
If your work was funded you may need consent for publication. Although you hold the intellectual property rights to material you have worked on, the data may belong to the paymaster. You will need to clarify this before submission.
Weekly professional magazines are more likely to publish 'quick read' features, while academic research and development journals tend to favour more in-depth articles.
An academic journal may be a good choice if your aim is to achieve a good rating in the academic review system and become an established expert in your chosen field.
As a general rule, it is better to publish one solid paper of around 5,000 words as opposed to two or three short articles.
Referencing your sources is crucial. Publishing houses usually offer referencing guidelines.
The two main referencing systems used in the UK are:
After submitting your work, there are a number of stages to go through. Publishers have a duty to handle work sensitively and within reasonable timescales.
Editors have the final say on whether a paper is accepted or rejected. To be accepted, it will normally need to be:
A firm rejection can be very disappointing, but try not to become discouraged. You can either try another outlet or start again. You may wish to seek the help of known experts, or consider being a second author on a paper.
When the reviewing process is over and publication has been agreed, you will usually be sent printed ‘galley proofs’ for checking. This is to check for minor misprints or any omissions from the original, rather than for making significant changes.
Publication time will vary from journal to journal. In some cases it will depend on any issues of the day and the ‘newsworthiness’ of the work. All journals will aim to publish within a few months of acceptance.
Getting published is exciting. It gives an added dimension to your work along with opportunities to interact with fellow professionals. It can help you establish your authority at local level. It may even lead to invitations to speak at conferences or contribute to major publications.