Top tips #7: Follow the instructions to authors

Each journal will have a section on its home page for “Instructions to authors”. These are there to help you as a potential author understand what the editor is looking for, and to get your work published.

There should be an indication of the types of research that the journal is aiming to publish, and also expectations of word length. There should also be details on the house style of the journal, for example, whether the active (We did…) or passive (the research done was…) voice is preferred.

Following the instructions to authors with care will lead to a greater chance of getting your work into print, and avoid your work being rejected at the first stage in the process.

Informal peer review

The February meeting of the Writing Club will be an informal peer review session.  Bring something you have written, perhaps something you would like to get published.   Others at the meeting will give you feedback on it.    We will have a peer review checklist to hand, and look at what is involved in peer review.    And you will be able to review others’ work.

The meeting is from 1pm to 2pm on Thursday 23rd February, and will be in the Stanley Tipton Room, Clinical Education Centre, Jarvis Building at the LRI.   Please note venue, which is not our usual one.

Top tips #6 Keep your peepers fresh

When writing, it’s easy to become too close to your manuscript. You can miss errors and typos because you know your argument inside out. A piece of advice given by one of the consultants at UHL (and an editor of a journal himself) is to put your final draft away, out of sight, for one to two weeks and go back to it after this time with fresh eyes. Proof reading by others will also be helpful, but give yourself a chance to spot your mistakes after a break from the manuscript. If you’re working to a deadline, try and build this time into your project.