Writing for Publication in Nursing and Healthcare- Getting it Right
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Writing for Publication in Nursing and Healthcare is an invaluable guide to ‘getting it right', focusing on all aspects of writing for publication. It will help the reader to develop skills in writing articles, book reviews and other forms of publications, and can also be used as an aide-mémoire for editors and journal or book reviewers. It explores:

  • How to get started
  • How to write various forms of publication including abstracts, papers, book reviews, journal articles and books
  • Good practice in reviewing
  • The editorial process
  • Ethical and legal aspects of publishing

Offering guidance, tips, examples and activities, this practical how-to book written by experts in the field is essential reading for all nurses and healthcare professionals.


Karen Holland is a Research Fellow in the School of Nursing, Midwifery & Social Work at the University of Salford.  She is the Subject Chair for Nursing/Health Professions on the international Content Selection and Advisory Board (CSAB) of SCOPUS Elsevier and has a varied publishing background. She is Editor of Nurse Education in Practice journal and author /editor of published articles and books.

Roger Watson is Professor of Nursing at the University of Sheffield.  He is also Honorary Professor in the School of Nursing, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Adjunct Professor in the School of Nursing and Midwifery at the University of Western Sydney, Australia, Visiting Professor in the Tzu-Chi College of Technology, Taiwan, and Honorary Professor in the School of Nursing and Midwifery at the University of Queensland, Australia.  He is editor-in-Chief of Journal of Advanced Nursing.


List of Contributors xi

Foreword xv

Preface xvii

Acknowledgements xix

1 Introduction: The Book, Its Philosophy and Its Focus 1
Karen Holland and Roger Watson

Introduction 1

Why publish what we write? 2

What are perceived barriers to successful writing? 4

How can we succeed? 4

Summary 5

References 6

Further reading 6

Websites 6

2 The Basics of Writing for Publication and the Steps to Success: Getting Started 7
Roger Watson

Introduction 7

Barriers to writing 7

Getting started 9

The process of publishing 1 8

What happens next? 2 1

References 2 1

3 Writing a Conference Abstract and Paper 23
Jan Draper

Introduction 23

Section 1: How to write an abstract 24

Section 2: How to write a conference presentation 33

Summary 40

References 41

Further reading 41

4 Writing for Publication: The Book Review 42
Dean Whitehead

Introduction 42

Personal experience 42

What are the different types of media for review? 43

Does writing a review differ from other scholarly publications? 44

Why write book/media reviews? 45

Writing successful and effective book/media reviews 47

Tips for writing effective book/media reviews: avoiding the pitfalls 49

Dealing with Review Editors 50

Starting slow or ready to go? 52

Summary 55

References 55

Websites 57

5 Writing for Publication: The Journal Article59
Roger Watson

Introduction 59

What message and to whom? 59

Targeting a journal 61

Read the guidelines 63

Section 1: Reading the guidelines 63

Section 2: Writing and organising the article 67

Section 3: Writing the paper 82

Submitting your manuscript 92

Conclusion 92

References 93

6 Writing for Publication: The Book 94
Karen Holland

Introduction 94

Why write a book? 94

Getting started 95

Contacting a publisher 96

Writing a book proposal 97

Writing on your own: key issues to consider 98

Writing with others: key issues to consider 98

The process of writing a book: key issues to consider 99

Tips for successful management of writing a book 99

Tips for being a book editor and author 101

What comes next? 102

Summary 103

References 103

Websites 103

7 Writing for Publication: The Essential Literature Review 104
Zena Moore

Introduction 104

Decide the question/aims/objectives 105

Identify the search strategy 107

Identifying bias in the literature 109

Critically evaluating the literature 111

Assessing quality issues in randomised controlled clinical trials 112

Assessing quality issues in qualitative studies 115

Write the review 117

Conclusion 118

References 118

Further reading 122

Websites 122

8 Writing for Publication: Turning Assignments into Publishable Works 123
Mark Hayter

Introduction 123

Get advice on writing your work for publication 124

Role of supervisors/authorship 124

What type of publication? 125

Editing research dissertations and theses for publication 131

Conclusion 144

References 144

Further reading 144

9 Writing for Publication: Turning the Conference Paper into Publishable Works 145
Tracy Levett-Jones and Teresa Stone Introduction 145

The benefits of turning a conference paper into a published work 146

Ethical considerations 147

The barriers to turning the conference paper into publishable work 147

Strategies for success 148

Start with the end in mind 149

The title 152

The introduction 153

Developing your presentation and manuscript concurrently 154

Writing the conclusion 156

Timeline 156

Conclusion 159

References 159

Further reading 160

Websites 161

10 The Editorial Process 162
Roger Watson

Introduction 1 62

Who are editors? 1 62

What is editing about? 163

Who else is involved? 164

What do editors look for in an article? 166

Editorial boards 168

What happens to your manuscript? 169

Digital object identifiers 173

Ethics 174

Compiling issues of the journal 175

Media exposure 176

Conclusion 176

References 176

Further reading 177

Websites 177

11 Being a Journal Reviewer: Good Practice in Reviewing 178
Karen Holland

Introduction 178

What is peer review? 179

Types of peer review 179

The role of a reviewer 180

What do we look for in a reviewer? 180

What do we expect from reviewers? 181

Reviewing for an international nursing education/practice journal: additional issues 188

What the editor and publisher can do for the reviewer? 189

Why become a reviewer? 190

Summary 191

References 191

Further reading 192

Websites 192

12 Ethical and Legal Aspects of Publishing: Avoiding Plagiarism and Other Issues 193
Charon A. Pierson

Introduction 193

Dilemma of ethics in publishing 193

Conflict of interest or competing interests 194

Summary and conclusions 206

References 206

Websites 207

13 The World Wide Web and Its Potential for Publication 209
Paul Murphy and Seamus Cowman

Introduction to web publishing 209

Open access publishing and open access self-archiving 211

BioMed Central 213

Publication fees 214

Peer review, quality, timeliness and impact 215

Depositing in a repository 217

Funding bodies and open access mandates 219

Electronic theses and dissertations 220

Web publishing, patient information and best practice 220

Communities of interest 221

Conclusion 221

References 222

Further reading 223

14 Dissemination of Published Work: The Process and the Value 224
Sue Turale

Chapter aim 224

Introduction 224

The value of disseminating your work 225

Strategies for dissemination of findings 230

Conclusion 238

References 239

15 Other Forms of Writing: Letters, Commentaries and Editorials 240
David R. Thompson and Chantal F. Ski

Introduction 240

Good practice and ethics of critical commentary 240

Submission procedures for alternative publishing opportunities 241

Letters 242

Commentaries 243

Editorials 244

‘New generation’ commenting facilities 245

Submission process and good practice 246

Conclusion 247

References 247

Further reading 248

Website 248

16 Where Do We Go from Here? Action Planning for Writing and Publishing 249
Roger Watson and Karen Holland

Introduction 249

What can we do? 249

Activities that will support your writing 250

Organising your life as a writer 254

Conclusion 257

References 258

Bibliography 259

Index 261


“It is highly recommended for all nursing professionals interesting in promoting healthcare practices through publication.”  (Nursing Older People, 1 July 2014)

“Despite that, this book remains a valuable addition to any nurse’s library.”  (Cancer Nursing Practice, 1 May 2014)

“This guide is easy to read and beautifully structured. Highly recommended.”  (Nursing Standard, 30 July 2013)

“The book will be useful for diabetes educators interested in improving their writing and presentation skills and communicating in written form.”  (European Diabetes, 27 February 2013)