Publish, Don’t Perish: Advice on Writing for Publication (Roundtable)


Pedagogy & Professional / Creative Writing, Editing and Publishing

Claire Sommers (Graduate Center-CUNY)

Professors have been advised to “publish or perish” for nearly 100 years. First coined in 1927, this phrase warns professors that in order to maintain their jobs, they must publish their work. Publishing has always been central to academia, as it is the primary vehicle through which scholars share their research with a larger audience. Yet, in recent years, academia has changed so that publishing is not reserved for those who are already professors. Instead, publishing has become a requirement for any one who is applying to become a professor, with PhD students being encouraged to publish their research before they have finished their degrees.

This roundtable will explore all aspects of the publishing process from first draft to submission to revision to print. We seek participants from all career stages and we welcome submissions that draw on personal experiences that reflect the editorial perspective as well as the writer’s. Possible approaches include:

· The writing process for an article or book

· What distinguishes a publishable article from a traditional paper or a dissertation

· Converting a dissertation chapter into an article

· The difference between a dissertation and a book

· How to know when a paper is suitable for publication

· How to revise a seminar or conference paper for publication

· Incorporating existing scholarship into a potential publication

· Strategies for determining where to submit your article or manuscript

· Tailoring your submission for different types of publications

· What to expect after submission, including revisions and time to publication

· Responding productively to reviewer feedback (revise and resubmit and/or rejections)

· What editors and publishers look for, including writing style, citations, and content

· The unique challenges of getting an article or book published

Please submit proposals of 250-words and a 75 word bio. We welcome proposals from all career stages (graduate student through full professor) and scholars who can share their experiences as submission reviewers and editors.


This roundtable will explore all aspects of the publishing process from first draft to submission to revision to print. We seek participants from all career stages and we welcome submissions that draw on personal experiences that reflect the editorial perspective as well as the writer’s.