December 11, 2010
Writing for Scholarly Publication
Here is a message that I sent on a listserv. It may be helpful to folks who are writing for scholarly publication.
The standard learning is that late February/the beginning of March is the best time to submit an article. Law reviews usually elect new officers in late February and start selecting articles for the coming year. They tend to fill up the next year's issues almost completely within the next 6 weeks. Still, they often leave some openings for especially attractive submissions that come in later.
Specialized journals often wait until later in the spring or until late August to make selections, feeling that they will get what the general, main journals have not chosen. Some general journal also wait until late August.
Some journals have "rolling admissions" or set their own individualized calendars. The journals published by LWI and ALWD fall in this category. Many journals have information on their websites.
For most journals, the best and most efficient way to submit to a large number of journals is via expressO, which enables multiple electronic submissions. Talk to someone at your school who can explain and show you the ropes. Some journals prefer that you submit manuscripts to them electronically through their own systems. Again, you can find out more on their websites.
If you are seeking publication in a general journal. please be aware that the competition is fierce and the selection process is in the hands of inexperienced students. Therefore, you must submit to a large number of journals--I think at least 50.
Finally, please keep in mind the LWI Writers Workshop, which can help you get your manuscript together. Those who have attended have found it helpful, and most have been published. This summer, we are planning to hold the workshop before or after the Storytelling Conference in Denver in early July. We will send out notices in the early spring.
My practical advice: If you are planning to devote major time to writing this coming summer, start collecting your research now. You can research and start outlining in relatively small blocks of time. Then you can hit the ground running in May or June.