Sharing your practice the ‘write’ way
Have you ever considered writing for a publication such as British Journal of Midwifery? If so, Karen Barker has some top tips, from getting started to final publication
I recently presented a conference session entitled ‘Writing for Publication’. The conference was attended by students, clinical midwives and allied health professionals, all of whom had an interest in writing. Some didn't feel that they had anything to offer, while others were unsure of how to get started. As a midwife, you already have a good idea of what would interest you so that's a great starting point. As a reader of journals, you are also able to do a quick assessment of how long a paper might need to be to hold your attention and the style it might be written in.
Why should you publish? This was one of the initial discussions we had—in light of low morale in the profession and staff shortages, midwives feel that they just don't have much free time. However, there was a feeling that midwives wanted to communicate with peers and other professionals so that best practice could be shared and networks formed. In fact, this might help improve working conditions and reignite some passion. If you are undertaking research, conducting an audit or working on policies and guidelines, it's good to get feedback from others. Publishing the details of the processes you went through, any challenges you experienced and how the project was evaluated can help make sure others learn from you. So here are my tips for novice writers to encourage you to get started with your writing for publication.
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