I listened to a podcast episode yesterday by Katie Linder on her Anatomy of a Book podcast (Episode 41; 2017 Writing Accomplishments: https://anatomyofabook.com/ep41/) and was inspired to look back over the past year to see what writing accomplishments I could list for 2017. I often remark to my research partner that it feels like we haven’t produced much in the way of publications in 2017 when I look at my seemingly very short listing of publications on my CV despite always being incredibly busy analyzing data, writing up articles and book chapters, etc…

The major reason for this is that it takes a seemingly long time for content to get published. It’s not uncommon for an article or book chapter to take 8 months or more from time of submission to actual publication. So when I heard Katie talking about all of her writing accomplishments for the past year, not just the official publications, I knew I had to go through this exercise for myself because I know I have more than what I can formally list on my CV right now.

Formal publications

In 2017, I had two articles published (which may seem like minimal productivity but it was twice as many as my one publication in 2016; Michalak, R., & Rysavy, M. D. T. (2016). Information literacy in 2015: International graduate business students’ perceptions of information literacy skills compared to test-assessed skills. Journal of Business & Finance Librarianship, 21(2), 152-174. doi:10.1080/08963568.2016.1145787). This year’s publications were:

  • Michalak, R., Rysavy, M.D.T., & Wessel, A. (2017). Students’ perceptions of their information literacy skills: The confidence gap between male and female international graduate students. The Journal of Academic Librarianship43(2), 100. doi:10.1016/j.acalib.2017.02.003
  • Rysavy, M.D.T., Michalak, R., Wessel, A., (2017) “8 Years of institutional assessment feedback: students’ satisfaction with library services”, Reference Services Review, 45(4), pp.544-561.

2017 was also the year I had my first “first authorship” role on an article and one related to my new-ish position as Director of Institutional Research and Training.  First authorship, or having the “first authorship position” rather, was emphatically emphasized throughout my graduate school experiences. I still find it to be a cool feeling to have that so-called coveted spot within the author credits, but as I’m in the midst of so many projects with my co-author, it honestly matters less. This is largely in part due to the fact that as an academic administrator who is not on the tenure track (I also have an assistant professor ranking but my institution doesn’t have tenure), I am not immediately concerning myself with ranking up in terms of professor ranking. However, to be mindful of future career opportunities, we are doing our best to evenly share the first author credit, i.e. we go back and forth with who gets the first author credit. Technically he has one more first authorship than me right now since he was first author for the 2016 publication and on one in 2017, but we have so many more upcoming publications that I’m truly not concerned about it. One of the many benefits to having a consistent research partner.

Book Chapter Acceptances & Submissions

I submitted my first book chapter proposal back in October 2016 and was accepted to write that chapter. In comparison, 2017 had significantly more chapter proposals accepted and submitted. We ended 2017 with three chapters submitted for publication. I think all three have 2018 publication dates.

I mentioned earlier about how there are often long timelines from article/chapter/book proposal to actual publication. A rather representative example would be a chapter we have appearing in Dirk Ifenthaler’s upcoming edited volume, “Digital Workplace Learning. Bridging Formal and Informal Learning with Digital Technologies”:

  • October 2016: We submitted a proposal for a book chapter
  • January 2018: The book will be published

So ultimately from our initial chapter proposal to edited collection book publication, the whole process took approximately 15 months. I’ll be interested to see when the other two chapters we submitted in 2017 are actually published and will make sure to share those details.

I’m not overly concerned with how quickly my publications come out, again because I’m not in a position of making a bid for tenure at my institution since we don’t have it, but being aware of how long it takes for something to be published has helped me understand the importance of continually having new projects in my writing pipeline. If I stopped planning ahead for the next project, next data collection, next article/chapter/book proposal, etc…, I would eventually get into a situation where I had no upcoming publications, which would mean a gap in the timing of my publications listed on my CV (and would limit the topics I had to propose for conference presentations since these often overlap to some extent). Since publishing consistently is important to me, I’m doing my best to make sure I keep my academic pipeline flowing!

Edited Collections

I submitted my first proposal for an edited collection with my co-researcher to Nova Science Publishers and it was accepted. An edited collection of our own wasn’t really on our immediate list of projects, but we had an idea, flushed out the proposal, submitted it, and it was accepted. As of this writing, we’ve selected chapter authors and they are in the process of writing their individual chapters. Our deadline to submit the collection to the publisher is the end of summer 2018.

Total Publications Submitted/Rejected for 2017

This is a metric I wish I had tracked for 2017. I didn’t. I know we submitted a fair amount of articles/book chapters in 2017. Some were outright accepted, a few had revise/resubmit and were ultimately accepted, and some were simply rejected. I plan to track these data points for 2018 so I can share them next year.

If you haven’t made a list of your writing accomplishments for 2017, I highly recommend it. It was definitely the inspiration I needed to begin working on my 2018 writing goals.