Wednesday, November 23, 2016

My tips on writing an article for a peer-reviewed library journal

Guest post by Jane Burns

Jane recently published an article
Role of the Information Professional in the Development and Promotion of Digital Humanities Content for Research, Teaching, and Learning in the Modern Academic Library: An Irish Case Study
This article and a number of other articles with Irish themes are available on open access until the end of April 2017, as a special issue of New Review of Academic Librarianship (NRAL)
Here she shares his tips based on her experiences of writing for NRAL
One of the biggest challenges you can have when you have completed a thesis or another significant piece of research is to the motivation to take on another research or writing project as the original experience has left you exhausted and fed up. But it is important to realise that the piece of research you have produced is very timely due to its recent completion and that you are immersed enough in the subject to write authoritatively about it.
So when the call for abstracts for the 2016 themed issue of  New Review of Academic Librarianship was posted I submitted an abstract hoping to find a home to develop some of my findings from my recent Masters in Digital Humanities thesis:
Determining the level of awareness of Digital Humanities in Irish Libraries and the perception of the
Librarians role in promoting the uptake and development of related approaches.
I related my Masters research to an online digitisation project - The Mary Martin Diary that I was involved in to create an informative case study.
This was a learning experience for me and it was great to have the support of Helen Fallon as the Editor of the themed issue of the NRAL.  My article is on open access until the end of April as part of an initiative to mark Library Ireland Week, so that's an added bonus.

 So here are a few tips based on my writing experience
1. Consider recent research you have completed as source material for the development of an
2. Think about what other experiences or outputs that you have that would complement what you
are writing about- it may help readers get a practical example of research to useful applications.
3. If you do get your submission accepted to the journal appreciate this as a positive thing to
happen but you are going to have to put a great deal of work into developing an article.
4. When you get feedback remember not to take it as criticism, someone has spent a great deal of
time reviewing your work and has made suggestions for improvement or to meet the journal’s
editorial requirements. Suggested tracked changes and comments mean that your article has
been deemed valuable- it just needs further work.
5. You have a responsibility as an author to promote your article and the journal once published.
Dissemination is key to your success and to the journal. There is no point in publishing if no one
knows about it or doesn’t read it.
Finally, if you get the chance to work with Helen Fallon jump at it. You will learn a great deal and you will have a professional writing experience that you can integrate into research and publishing career.

Jane Burns

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