What every journal editor expects an author to do

What every journal editor expects an author to do


Hi there! I’m Donald Samulack,
President, US Operations, of Editage, an English
language services provider. And I am here today
at Wolters Kluwer in Philadelphia, talking with Dr.
Anne Woods, who is Chief Nurse, and Shawn
Kennedy, the Editor-in-Chief of the American Journal of Nursing.
Hi there! Hi! So, a couple of
things that come to mind is…one is
confidentiality and getting back to
the – the content management system
aspect of things. Everything that you mentioned
of all the people that it goes – to the peer reviewers – and
all the hands it touches… One of the fascinating
things is it never leaves this content
management system and it is worked on
within the system. So, confidentiality
is ultimately at the core of the process. Right. And are there other things
that the author needs to know about or about do’s and don’ts
in submitting a manuscript, which – what are the flags
that you have seen over the years, what are the suggestions
you can offer to an author? Well, the biggest issue is that
many of the authors that we find don’t really read the author or
follow the author guidelines. They’ll write a paper and
then submit it and we have a – we have guidelines on how
it should be formatted, Not only just because it
– it meets APA standards and guidelines for
scholarly work, but reviewers get to review
things that – they get used to a certain way
of reviewing things. And if people don’t
take care in what they submit and it
has typos in it, misspellings, and
they don’t follow the format, it sort of
hints at sloppy work. So then you wonder
“Well, can I really trust everything
they’re saying?” So, to – to have an email that
addresses another journal which I have had – you
know: “Dear editor, I want to submit my manuscript to
the journal” and it’s not my journal, and I know they’re
just sending things out. So, I think for
the – the biggest thing for authors
is to – this is your presentation
of your work and it should be the
best presentation. It shouldn’t have errors, and it should be according
to guidelines, Because that’s telling
me you really want to be published
in my journal. And it’s telling me
that you are very careful and detailed
in your work. So, that’s – that’s
like a big flag for me. One of the – one of the things
that in Editage we do a lot of educational workshops
for authors on best writing practices, and one of the things we often
profess is that the manuscript in itself is for the author,
it’s the author’s manuscript. But what they are writing
the manuscript for…it’s not necessarily
the end audience. They are writing that
manuscript for the peer reviewer, and the cover
letter, the manuscript, the format, the – the
following instructions throughout, all of this
dance is to impress upon the peer reviewer because
those are the two – two or three gatekeepers
that are going to either PREVENT this paper
from being published or going to ALLOW this
paper to be published. Right. So, all effort from
square one needs to be to impress the
peer reviewers. And if you impress
the peer reviewers, then your paper
will be successful. Yeah. The other piece is that
they need to look at the journal, because it’s clear
sometimes that they have never even looked at the journal
and don’t know what type of articles we do or even the style
or tone or level of detail. So, they need to review a couple
copies of the journal and see what – is this the right
journal for what I am writing? And – and the other aspect that
we are getting now is many universities are requiring
students to write papers and then telling them, “Okay, you
should submit this paper.” We get the actual paper that
they wrote for the class! So – and student papers are very
different from journal articles. Student papers are written
to tell – to show the professor what you
have learned or what – what experience you have
had, and journal articles have to be written with
the reader in mind. Readers are experienced
and busy clinicians. They don’t necessarily care
about everything you learned. They want to know,
okay, what’s the new information I need
for my practice. So, it’s a very different paper that you would
write as a student for your professor
than you would write for a journal article. So, I would say to
the – to authors who are looking to
publish a paper that they wrote or…I have
gotten complete doctoral dissertations
submitted too! But is to take what
you learn from that paper or take the
nugget from your dissertation and say,
okay, here’s what the nurses in practice
need to know. That’s right. So – so, that’s –
that’s the most important thing: Are
you addressing the needs and the mission
and vision of this journal in the way
that they do it? I would just like to add. I think Shawn brings up a really good point. When you write for publication, you’re
writing to change practice and improve
patient outcomes. And you have to write
differently than you do to impress
your professor. So, it – it’s really key
that the authors do that. And that too what Shawn
was saying about all the work that AJN does
on the manuscript… AJN is very different
than the majority of every other journal
that’s out there. And that’s why it’s so
important to use a system like Editage who can
really help an author or an author who is new
or an author whose English language is not
their first language, to really work with the
author on making it the best possible
publication, because as you have said Don, if it
doesn’t pass muster, pass the peer reviewers, it
will not go further. And it has to be written well, there needs to be
rigor behind it. It needs to be written
without typos, it needs to be a
nice, concise, clean manuscript that no
matter who you are you can read it and
understand it. And that’s why
working with a group like Editage is so important. And in – in
transparency, Wolters Kluwer and Editage has a relationship and – and their co-branded author
services site where language editing
and transcription, translation, and other services are offered at – well,
so it’s wkauthorservices.com. But the – so, that I
think was a great analysis of what the
authors really need to think about when
submitting and what is actually the machinery
behind the submission. And so we will bring closure to this video vignette
on that note. And this is one of
several as we are here discussing with Dr.
Anne Woods, Chief Nurse at Wolters Kluwer and
Shawn Kennedy, the Editor-in-Chief, American
Journal of Nursing. I’m Donald Samulack, President,
US Operations of Editage. Look for more videos.

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