How to Turn Your Dissertation, Thesis, or Paper into a Publication (Part Two)

By Camille Gamboa, SAGE US PR & Conventions Assistant

Part 2: Where to publish

 A Book or a Journal? – So you’ve decided that your work is worth pursuing further. What next? Now you have to select the appropriate publishing outlet. First of all, remember that this is not a decision that you should make on your own. Take advice from mentors, colleagues, or your trusted thesis chair. Dr. Charlotte Frost, blogger for phd2published, and Sarah Caro, author of How to Publish your PhD, provides some issues you may want to consider before deciding which route to go which we have synthesized here with our own comments:

  1. Time-Sensitivity – If the topic of your paper is relevant because of time-sensitive issues, a journal or online publication may be a more appropriate fit for you. Still, remember that the time it takes to publish an article varies from journal to journal and it is never an instantaneous process.
  2. Subject Area – The subject area that you work in may help determine if you go the book route or the journal route. For example, Caro states that publishing in a book is a more attractive option for those scholars working in sociology, literature, or cultural studies, while journals might be a better option for those working in psychology and economics. Those working in history, politics, and law should consider both options equally.
  3. Quantity of Material – Before deciding to transform your thesis or dissertation into a book, it is important that you take a step back to decide if you have enough material. According to Caro, for a book, you are looking at publishing around 60,000 words. Frost warns that just because your dissertation is hundreds of pages long, doesn’t mean that there is enough original content to warrant a new book.
  4. Writing Ability – Are you a natural writer or is it really the process of research that keeps you going in the world of scholarship? If you don’t really enjoy the writing process, you should reconsider a decision to write a book.

So now that you’ve decided where you want to publish your work, the next step is to decide which aspects of your thesis, dissertation, or paper are the best for publishing. Coming up in a future post, we’ll provide you with a list of questions to help you with this part of the process.

For more tips and help, check out the phd2published blog, or Caro’s book How to Publish your PhD, published by SAGE. Check out part 1part 3, and part 4.

About SAGE Publications

Founded in 1965, SAGE is the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. Known for our commitment to quality and innovation, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students across a broad range of subject areas. With over 1200 employees globally from principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore, and Washington DC, our publishing programme includes more than 640 journals and over 800 books, reference works and databases a year in business, humanities, social sciences, science, technology and medicine. Believing passionately that engaged scholarship lies at the heart of any healthy society and that education is intrinsically valuable, SAGE aims to be the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. This means playing a creative role in society by disseminating teaching and research on a global scale, the cornerstones of which are good, long-term relationships, a focus on our markets, and an ability to combine quality and innovation. Leading authors, editors and societies should feel that SAGE is their natural home: we believe in meeting the range of their needs, and in publishing the best of their work. We are a growing company, and our financial success comes from thinking creatively about our markets and actively responding to the needs of our customers.
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