Sunday, September 27, 2009

60 Days of Scholarly Journal Article Writing -- Day 9

For background on the 60 Days of Journal Article Writing, please click here.

After working through the exercises in Writing Your Journal Article in 12 Weeks and getting up to this point, I realized that I needed to change projects. The beauty of this book, however, is that it brings this sort of crisis point at the beginning of the writing process, not at the end after you've already done so much work. The key problem with my original article idea -- based on that old conference paper -- was its interdisciplinarity. That's fine at a conference where work is as much entertaining as it is informative, and you can cross boundaries without fear of being called out for not being an expert in the second field. But journals demand more, and for a 12-week project I just didn't have the serious scholarly background in either music or medicine necessary to publish the article I originally planned.

Instead, I broke the "rules" slightly by launching a new piece, albeit one based on a section of my book that is also underway. This is going much better, partly because I'm already immersed in the necessary literature because of the work for the book, and also because it is 100% on my home turf academically. I don't have to stretch into a new field or two. This feels entirely natural, and the research has been such a joy that I don't mind writing something fresh for the 12-week project. As I continue to blog this book there may be snags, but right now I can see my way through the next ten weeks, and it feels great.

The picture above offers a large hint as to what I'm writing about.

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