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Managing an Academic Career. Topics. Why Write? What obstacles do you face as a writer? What constitutes research and scholarship? How can I support my research and writing goals?. Goals. Help you identify and overcome the obstacles you face as a writer

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topics
Topics
  • Why Write?
  • What obstacles do you face as a writer?
  • What constitutes research and scholarship?
  • How can I support my research and writing goals?
goals
Goals
  • Help you identify and overcome the obstacles you face as a writer
  • Help you prioritize research projects
  • Use a Career Research Planner to help you achieve to focus on your scholarly goals
why research write or publish
Why Research, Write or Publish?

write for pleasure or to gratify "the need.”

write to advance knowledge (i.e., to be a producer rather than a consumer of knowledge).

write to understand material better

why research write or publish1
Why Research, Write or Publish?

write to improve teaching.

write to join the academic community and "the invisible college."

why research write or publish2
Why Research, Write or Publish?

write to improve career options.

write to earn money (e.g., grants, textbooks, commercial articles)

write for Tenure/Promotion/Career Advancement

aaup publications
AAUP Publications
  • Number of AAUP members: 121Titles published annually per press: between 5 and 2,000Average number of titles/press: 74Press size, by annual sales: $250,000 to $50 million
  • Average number of employees per press: 34States with at least one AAUP member press: 42, plus the District of Columbia
  • Number of books published by AAUP members in FY 2000: 9,000Total U.S. book sales by AAUP members: $450 millionAAUP members' revenue per title: $50,000
american publications 2000
American Publications, 2000

Total number of books published in the U.S. in 2000, all publishers: 60,000

Total U.S. book sales in 2000: $25 billionRevenue per title, all U.S. publishers: $417,000

why research write or publish3
Why Research, Write or Publish?

Write to experience ideas, places, concepts that are impossible for you outside of your imagination

so why don t faculty write
So Why Don’t Faculty Write?

Ten to fifteen per cent of the professoriate publishes 95% of what’s published!Why?

what keeps you from writing
What Keeps You From Writing?

There's too much academic writing.Research suggests that the bulk of scholarship is produced by a relatively small number of scholars: only about 10 to 20 percent of our colleagues appear to be responsible for the bulk of what's published (Jalongo; Boyer; Sykes; Simonton). In "Why Academicians Don't Write," Robert Boice and Ferdinand Jones conclude "The median number of scholarly publications for even the most prolific disciplines like psychology is zero. . . . Most academicians who do write contribute infrequently; as few as 10 percent of writers in specific areas account for over 50 percent of the literature. . ." (568).

what keeps you from writing1
What Keeps You From Writing?

2. Scholarship interferes with teaching.But, in fact, studies of academics in these settings [community colleges] show that while teaching loads are double and that publications are half those of major research universities, proportionately as many faculty at teaching campuses manage to publish at respectable rates as at research campuses.

(Boice, "Strategies for Enhancing Scholarly Productivity" in Writing and Publishing for Academic Authors.)

what keeps you from writing2
What Keeps You From Writing?
  • As academics, we need large chunks of time to write. Binge writing is preferable to freewriting or writing regularly.
    • What research shows about one group of faculty:
      • In the year prior to the intervention, these faculty wrote the way they always wrote and 15 percent of them finished manuscripts.
      • In the year of the intervention, 100 percent finished manuscripts (Boice 1992).
benefits of daily writing
Benefits of Daily Writing

Bob Boice (1989)

1 7

64

what keeps you from writing3
What Keeps You From Writing?

4. Academic publishing is a genteel profession, carried on by scholars without concern for market considerations. Writing should be a lonely craft conducted by introverts. Writers work best sitting alone at their desks.

5. Gifted scholars know what they will write about before writing. They rarely revise.

what keeps you from writing4
What Keeps You From Writing?

6. Because writers should think and then write, they should delay writing until they have completed their research.

7. Once written, the word is final.

what keeps you from writing5
What Keeps You From Writing?
  • Academic authors should eschew the first person and avoid revealing personal experiences in their writing.
  • Accepting rejection and assuming that the peer-review process is fair and objective.
what keeps you from writing6
What Keeps You From Writing?

The peer-review process is fair and objective.

After examining “ 402 reviews of 153 papers submitted to 12 editors of American Psychological Association journals” Douglas Fiske and Louis Fogg concluded “ In the typical case, two reviews of the same paper had no critical point in common.”

It seemed that reviewers did not overtly disagree on particular points; instead, they wrote about different topics, each making points that were appropriate and accurate. As a consequence, their recommendations about editorial decisions showed hardly any agreement” (591).

Source: Fiske, Donald W. & Louis Fogg. American Psychologist (May 1990): 591-597.

don t let rejection beat you
Don’t Let Rejection Beat You
  • Don’t accept everything you hear. Ignore the cranks. Like bad drivers, there are too many cranks for you to police.
  • Be your own worst critic. No one will take your work as seriously as you do.
  • Don’t try to critique your work at the last minute.
don t let rejection beat you1
Don’t Let Rejection Beat You

Don’t take criticism personally. Focus on the positive. Don’t waste your energies writing to editors and telling them why they were fools to reject your ideas. Instead, place your energies into moving forward. Either immediately revise the manuscript or send it back out for consideration elsewhere.

don t let rejection beat you2
Don’t Let Rejection Beat You

Don’t try to critique your work at the last minute. This is impossible.

When writing, don’t worry about criticism.

Keep the manuscripts in the mail, yet don’t mail junk! When you submit something, be sure it’s as good as you can make it, or, at the very least, that it won’t embarrass you.

  • Get to know the editors who decide whether or not to publish your work. Call the editor if you are unsure about a reviewer’s comments.
what keeps you from writing7
What Keeps You From Writing?

Please “freewrite” for 3-5 minutes (i.e., write without stopping in response to the following prompt):

The obstacles that interfere with my achieving my research and writing goals are . . .

think rhetorically
Think Rhetorically

What counts as research and scholarship?

What expectations guide the salary, tenure, and promotion decisions?

what counts as research and scholarship
What Counts as Research and Scholarship?
    • The activity requires a high level of discipline-related expertise.
    • The activity breaks new ground, is innovative.
    • The activity can be replicated or elaborated.
  • (Source: Diamond and Adam, qtd. In Diamond 17)
what counts as research and scholarship1
What Counts as Research and Scholarship?
    • The work and its results can be documented.
    • The work and its results can be peer-reviewed.
    • The activity has significance or impact.
  • (Source: Diamond and Adam, qtd. In Diamond 17)
contextual constraints understand the faculty reward system
Contextual Constraints: Understand the Faculty Reward System
  • Scholarship of Discovery
  • Scholarship of Application
  • Scholarship of Teaching
  • Scholarship of Service
  • Grant Writing
how can i support my writing
How Can I Support My Writing?

Network. Attend conferences, write book reviews, and get to know leading editors, researchers, and scholars in your field.

Networking cannot substitute for good research, but good research cannot substitute for networking either. You can't get a job or a grant or any recognition for your accomplishments unless you keep up to date with the people in your community (Agee)

how can i support my writing1
How Can I Support My Writing?

Be aware of Scholarly Discussions. Subscribe to E-Lists in your discipline

  • play an active role in E-Lists.
  • Outlook Users: Create folders/list

Write letters or e-mail notes to other scholars when you have questions.

how can i support my writing2
How Can I Support My Writing?

Volunteer your services as a consulting reader for the journals and book publishers in your discipline.

Interview a major theorist or editor in your field and publish the interview in a professional journal.

how can i support my writing3
How Can I Support My Writing?

When you cite someone extensively in an article, send them a copy of the published version.

Here is the procedure: (a) choose someone you wish to approach and read their work with some care; (b) make sure that your article cites their work in some substantial way (in addition to all your other citations); (c) mail the person a copy of your article; and (d) include a low-key, one-page cover letter that says something intelligent about their work. If your work and theirs could be seen to overlap, include a concise statement of the relationship you see between them. The tone of this letter counts. Project ordinary, calm self-confidence. (Agre)

how can i support my writing4
How Can I Support My Writing?

Consider editing an anthology of original essays

Create a disciplinary Web site.

how can i support my writing5
How Can I Support My Writing?

Coauthor and co-edit projects.

Have your research proposals and research designs critiqued by established scholars before conducting a study. Share rough drafts of your work in-progress with peers, productive scholars, and editors.

Use the peer-review process to solicit tough criticisms.

how can i support my writing6
How Can I Support My Writing?

Subscribe to The Chronicle’s job information service

Join the COS (Community of Science)

identify publishable academic projects
Identify Publishable, Academic Projects
  • What major theories are scholars debating in your discipline?
  • What are the primary research questions in your discipline?
  • What methodologies are considered appropriate?
identify publishable academic projects1
Identify Publishable, Academic Projects

After reviewing the contents of major journals conferences,

What important new research trends can you identify? Seek New Patterns, Research Methodologies, Metaphors, and Connections Across Disciplines

slide43

Identify Publishable, Academic Projects

  • Market Your Documents before Writing. Decide on a publisher—better yet, a list of five to ten possible publishers—before writing the report or conducting the research. 
    • Will the journal help you reach the community you need to reach?
    • Determine each journal’s ranking. Is it a refereed, first-tier or second-tier journal?
    • Be reasonable. Submit documents to appropriate places. While in general it makes sense to submit to the most distinguished journal or publisher, you may first need to develop a batting average.
    • If appropriate, query, e-mail, or talk to the editor before submitting the essay.
market your documents before writing
Market Your Documents before Writing  

Decide on a publisher—better yet, a list of five to ten possible publishers—before writing the report or conducting the research.

  • Determine each journal’s ranking. Is it a refereed, first-tier or second-tier journal?
  • Be reasonable. Submit documents to appropriate places. While in general it makes sense to submit to the most distinguished journal or publisher, you may first need to develop a batting average.
  • If appropriate, query, e-mail, or talk to the editor before submitting the essay.
learn new authoring tools1
Learn New Authoring Tools
  • Blogs
  • Wikis
  • Content Management Systems > SharePoint
learn new authoring tools2
Learn New Authoring Tools
  • Writing Space/Scholarship is Changing
  • More use of visuals (visual rhetoric)
  • Use of animations and video
  • More collaboration
  • Interactive writing tools (track changes, subscription, roundtripping)