Recently we asked several TAA members the question, “What changes are you hoping to see within the publishing industry this year?” Five key changes were identified: improvements in self-publishing, technology-driven innovations, better peer-review processes, increases in open access publishing, and a new era of transparency in publisher-author communication.
This week’s collection of articles from around the web begins with helpful advice on managing your writing time, your summer, and your academic career path from Masters to PhD. We then explore successful practices for crafting introductions, conducting a rapid evidence reviewing form of literature review, incorporating figures, understanding peer review, and writing successful grant applications. Finally, we review industry trends in writing discussions to journal papers, the evolution of the open access ecosystem, a new open access publishing platform for the social sciences, faculty presence in the open education movement, and the meaning of “inclusive” in digital textbook publishing.
James M. Cain suggests that “If your writing doesn’t keep you up at night, it won’t keep anyone else up either.” As you write this week, focus on the things that keep you up at night – the ideas that burn the strongest on your mind even when you aren’t writing – so that your writing can inspire and awaken those who read it.
A question continues in some stores, “Paper or plastic?” While recyclable bags may make this a thing of the past, other questions continue. Authors continue to ponder whether their book should be a paper copy or an eBook. While this is an important discussion, it should not cause deep thinking.
The obvious answer is both. If a publisher is wise, it will offer a book or monograph in both formats. This is a smart consumer-centric option. Let the buyer decide which they prefer. Let’s discuss, though, each format to see where the market is and the virtues of each one.
Cengage authors David Knox and Caroline Schacht filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on May 15 against Cengage claiming the company’s emphasis on digital distribution, including its new Cengage Unlimited model and expanded digital courseware offerings, have violated their publishing agreements. The suit also claims that the company is refusing to provide information that would allow them to audit their royalty payments.
TAA member Judi L. Nath is a Professor of Biology and Writer-in-Residence at Lourdes University and a textbook author in the anatomy, anatomy & physiology, and medical terminology writing discipline.
Her most recent publications are A Short Course in Medical Terminology and Programmed Learning Approach to Medical Terminology. She is a published author or co-author of 9 different textbooks covering the areas of anatomy, anatomy & physiology, and medical terminology. Many of the titles sound very similar, so it can be confusing. To illustrate, here’s an accounting: Human Anatomy (9e), Fundamentals of Anatomy & Physiology (11e), Visual Anatomy & Physiology (3e), Anatomy & Physiology (2e), Visual Essentials of Anatomy & Physiology (1e), Using Medical Terminology (2e), A Short Course in Medical Terminology (4e), Programmed Learning Approach to Medical Terminology (3e), and Stedman’s Medical Terminology (2e).
We recently reached out to winners of the 2018 TAA Textbook Awards and asked them to answer some questions about their textbook writing. The first installment of this four-part series focused on why they decided to write their textbook, and how they got started. The second installment focused on what they do to boost their confidence as a writer, how they fit writing time into their schedule, and what software they use.
This third installment in the four-part series focuses which pedagogical elements in their textbook they are most proud of, and what involvement they have had in marketing their book.