Guidelines for Contributing Authors
Thank you for your interest in contributing to the Racism Review blog. We’re looking forward to publishing your work on the blog soon. These guidelines will help you to have your article published as quickly as possible. If you have any questions about your contribution, please use the contact form.
Length and format
- In order to increase readability and accessibility, we aim for our articles to be between 800 and 1,200 words.
- We are also happy to post longer essays of over 2,000 words, if appropriate. If you are interested, please discuss this with the blog team.
- Please send us your draft article in Word format, with your name at the top.
Audience, writing style and language
- Our main aim is to provide a resource by publishing scholarship that critically analyzes racism in writing that is widely accessible to a broad general audience. With this in mind, your article should be written with a relatively wide audience in mind, including non-academics.
- Our most widely read blog articles are written in a more natural style, so we recommend that you avoid overusing acronyms and academic terms, such as Latin words, or specific terminology that may not be well known outside disciplinary circles. Also avoid saying things like “In this paper I will…”, or “This paper aims to…”, and go straight into your discussion of the topic.
- Use short paragraphs made up of four or five sentences
- As with journalistic pieces ‘lead with the best.’ Don’t save your main argument or analysis for the end of the post.
- Write your article as a standalone piece, even if it summarizes material in a longer paper or journal article.
- Try to present all of your argument and evidence within the text and avoid relying too heavily on information contained in external sources. Avoid phrases such as “in my recent paper, I have shown that political pollsters tend to get it wrong…” and simply say “Political pollsters get it wrong for these reasons…” Remember that many journal articles are behind a paywall and not all readers will have access to them.
- Images are optional, but should be licensed for reuse. If you have questions about this, please ask.
- If you do send images, please send each as separate, image-based files (not embedded in your Word document).
- We use links rather than citations for references. Links should direct readers to more detailed reports or other pieces of research, news items or other blog posts. Open access sources (available to anyone on the web without a university login) are preferable compared to those behind paywalls.
- Please insert a hyperlink at the relevant point of your argument that you’d like to reference (using ctrl-K in Word) or simply place the URL in parentheses where you would like it to be placed and we will link it ourselves.￼￼￼
- We try to use narrative titles, i.e., a single sentence that sums up the main argument of the article. The more descriptive and catchy the title, the more likely the article is to be read.
- Try to avoid questions (How can Senate deadlock be overcome?) or general topics (Inequality in the Rust Belt). An examples of a good title:
- Try and keep titles to twenty words or less, if possible.
Graphs and Charts
- We encourage the use of charts and figures. Graphs and charts are preferable to tables, as they are easier for readers to interpret quickly. In all cases, please send us the raw data of your chart, table, or figure in Excel format.
- Each chart needs a clearly labeled heading, labels for the X and Y axes or histogram bars, including units of measurement and a readable scale or background grid.
- There should be a clear legend distinguishing multiple data series from each other and a brief note on sources. Lines must be thick enough and distinctively colored. Charts should use a numerical progression to make comparisons more visible.
- We’re proud of our contributing authors, so we like to give them full attribution. Please send us a short biographical note, with your academic position, research interests, and (if you have it) links your most recent publications and/or a Twitter handle.
Our Editing Process
- In most cases submitted articles will be reviewed speedily by Jessie and/or Joe, who will edit the piece to enhance readability to the blog’s wider audience. We’ll send you the piece first (before distributing), and you should read over it carefully at this stage to see if we have introduced any typos or if you object to any of the more substantive edits.
All articles on the Racism Review blog should be evidence based. With this in mind, editors may double-check the factual accuracy of certain points, or ask you for links to supporting information.