Communicating Every Detail with Journal Editors
For many academics and scientists the path to successful publication is a challenging process in which careful communication with an acquisitions editor as well as a number of revisions based on the feedback of that editor and the peer reviewers evaluating the submitted work is necessary. This process is a delicate one and it is absolutely vital that not only every problem the editor identifies, but also every detail you consider important is dealt with in a satisfactory manner before your work is published.
The consequences of not attending to every important detail can be easily demonstrated through an example. Let us say that a scholar new to publication submitted his paper – a reworked chapter of his doctoral thesis – to a top-tier journal for publication and received the fabulous news that the journal would indeed like to publish the article. Once the initial ecstatic response passed, he paid careful attention to the other content of the editor’s message and discovered that a few concerns had to be resolved before the paper could be formally accepted. Among these were questions about how an extremely complex appendix should be laid out, comments offered by a peer reviewer whose thoughts on the topic were somewhat outdated and a quick note on how acknowledgements would need to be presented a little differently.
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Obviously, any serious academic or scientist would be more worried about that appendix and the feedback of the peer reviewer than about the minor matter of moving and reformatting acknowledgements, and such was the case with this young scholar. In his letter to the editor he suggested ideas for presenting the appendix effectively and he explained how and why his perspective differed from that of the peer reviewer. Finally, he offered to put the acknowledgements wherever and in whatever format the editor preferred, but he also offered the caveat that if the acknowledgements were removed from the first footnote, that footnote would be entirely eliminated, so all other footnotes would require renumbering, and since there were cross references between footnotes, this would require slight adjustments in a few of the notes.
The response was incredibly positive. The editor agreed with the young scholar’s perspective, chose one of his suggestions for laying out the appendix and informed him that the simple move of the acknowledgements from the footnote to the end of the article could be done from the copy of the paper he already had – it was, you see, still the age of printed submissions, and requiring no changes from the author significantly hastened the publication process. This was such incredibly good news that the scholar neglected to notice that the editor did not actually mention the changes to note numbers or the adjustments to cross references. An academic or scientific author with experience in publishing would have immediately recognised that such adjustments to the detailed information provided for readers are best performed or at the very least checked by the author, who understands exactly what is intended. He or she would have sought confirmation of the point from the editor, but our young scholar was most pleasantly overwhelmed by the prospect of publication – in the very next issue if all went as the editor hoped – and the last thing he wanted to do was make waves, irritate a busy professional or imply that the journal was incapable of accurately changing the tiny details he had identified. He also assumed that he would have an opportunity to check the text and appendix before publication despite the rush for inclusion in the next issue, but he did not ask to make sure.
Then the new issue of the journal arrived in the post along with a large stack of offprints. It was a delightful moment, until the young scholar realised that those cross references had not been corrected to match the new note numbering, and when he asked if a list of errors could be issued, arguing that he had not been given a chance to check the proof, the journal dismissed the idea with the explanation that it did not do errata. The article was still a significant achievement, of course, but every time that scholar pencilled in the corrections before sending a copy of his paper to a colleague or mentor he thought about the readers who would not see those changes and felt rather keenly the value of communicating clearly and thoroughly about even the smallest details that matter.
Why Our Editing and Proofreading Services?
At Proof-Reading-Service.com we pride ourselves on our large and extremely dedicated team of academic and scientific professionals. Our proofreaders and editors are highly educated native speakers of English and their areas of specialisation range so widely that we are able to help our clients improve and perfect all kinds of research manuscripts for successful publication. Many members of our team work predominantly on articles intended for publication in scholarly journals, ensuring that formatting and references conform to author guidelines with precision and correcting grammar, punctuation, spelling and simple typing errors so that our customers are able to report their research in the clear and accurate ways required to impress acquisitions editors and earn publication.
Our editing services for authors of scientific papers and books are especially popular, but we have the experience and expertise to proofread and edit books in every scholarly discipline as well as beyond them, and some of our carefully trained proofreaders and editors work exclusively on helping students improve the formatting and language of their theses and dissertations. Whether you are preparing a conference paper for presentation or publication, polishing a professional report to share with your colleagues, or tackling the daunting task of editing and perfecting any kind of academic or scientific document, a qualified member of our expert team can provide invaluable assistance and give you greater confidence in your written work. Our translation services for scientific and academic documents have also proven immensely helpful for many of our international clients.