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Most useful textbook and academic posts of the week: February 19, 2021

“Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism.” ~David M. BurnsHow do you define success? As you refine your writing practice, especially in an environment constantly changing, it’s important to be able to answer this question. David M. Burns cautions, however that success does not equal reflection. “Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism.” Success requires overcoming fear and moving forward.

Our collection of articles this week includes some practical advice on common challenges academic authors face. First is the challenge of knowing our readers, their preferences, and their expectations so we can meet them. Second is designing the research and dealing with a revise and resubmit decision on a submitted manuscript. Third is employing new tools and methods to our work. Fourth is maintaining successful habits and avoiding the effects of burn out. And, finally, is the need to deal with changes in the industry as they relate to publishing processes, book proposals, rights retention strategies, and self-publishing options.

There is no shortage of challenges authors face in the writing process, but the way forward is to move through the challenges and to define success somewhere short of perfection. Happy writing!

Identifying your reader

One key factor to any marketing strategy’s success is knowing who your audience is, and yet, this tends to be the main ingredient many of my author clients miss from their marketing process.

New research provides insights into which versions of articles researchers prefer

Preprints, accepted manuscripts, and the final published version of record (VOR) mean researchers now have access to increasing multiple versions of research papers.  In its latest white paper released today, “Exploring researcher preference for the Version of Record”, produced in collaboration with data from ResearchGate, Springer Nature seeks to provide increased understanding into how researchers view these different versions, which they prefer to use and why.

Meeting your readers’ expectations – a revision strategy

This particular revision strategy can help you to check whether you have included all of the bits that need to be in your text. You can see what’s left out. It’s a strategy that is designed to position you as the reader you hope to have.

Research design steps

In designing a study, would it make any difference whether you first posed a closed-end question in which you asked participants to rate aspects of the institution (academics, food, social life, location, athletics) or an open-ended question (“What do you like about your institution?”).Yes,” it would make a difference.

Tackling an R&R (Revise-And-Resubmit) – a full-fledged process

On the full-fledged process of responding to a Revise-And-Resubmit (R&R): I have written pieces that tackle specific components of the process, but I hadn’t actually written a thread or a blog post showcasing how all my blog posts fit with one another. I teach this process when I give workshops. So I figured I could post it here on my blog, based on a Twitter thread I created for this purpose.

Helpful app types for every writer

People around the world can make a living as a writer, and can use state of the art technology in pursuit of their deepest dreams. That’s something to celebrate. If you’re feeling stressed out or down due to your writing responsibilities, here are three types of tool to lighten your load and make life more manageable.

A research conversation: New thinking about research design

In this research conversation our February Mentors in Residence Pengfei Zhao, Karen Ross, Peiwei Li and Barbara Dennis discuss foundational ideas from their new book, Making Sense of Social Research Methodology. This practical and interesting book will be valuable to new and experienced researchers and practitioners.

What do professors do during a writing session?

I recently gave an online workshop to doctoral students about strategies for keeping up with a writing schedule during the COVID-19 pandemic. The workshop covered strategies for maintaining a regular writing habit, finding a temporary writing space at home and collaborating with co-authors over Zoom. Over all, we had a productive discussion about the importance of regular writing sessions as a key part of a faculty member’s week. Yet at the conclusion of the workshop, one student asked, “But what do professors actually do during a writing session?”

How early career researchers suffer when senior scholars burn out

Over the past six months the De Gruyter insights team has been examining the impact of the pandemic on the research practices of academic authors. We wanted to understand the obstacles they were facing and the pressures they were under, personally and professionally. We found that while everyone at every level of academia has been impacted in some way, some have been impacted more than others.

Ranking & rebooting publishing

A thorough understanding of global publishing in 2020 considers not only the bottom lines for companies, but also what underlines their business. Questions about publishing formats – books, mangas, and graphic novels, even magazines – must be raised.

How to write a non-fiction book proposal with Alison Jones

What makes a non-fiction book stand out from the crowd? What are the essential elements of a non-fiction book proposal if you want to pitch agents and/or publishers, or if you want to prepare for effective self-publishing? In this interview, Alison Jones goes into detail on these things and how the publishing industry has changed due to the pandemic.

Explaining the rights retention strategy

The Rights Retention Strategy is perhaps one of the most complicated pieces of the cOAlition’s policy regime. Unpacking each word — rights, retention, and strategy — is one approach to better understanding what this policy is and how it functions within the Plan S compliance framework overall.

7 Reasons to self-publish your next book

If you’re at the stage in your writing life where you’re ready to release a book, you might have considered whether self-publishing is a viable route for your work. No matter how you feel about self-publishing at the moment, here are seven reasons that it might be the best way forward for your next book.