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Article Submission

  1. Mar 6, 2012 #1
    I was asked by my research advisor to write an article/short paper for publishing about our findings in an experiment we've been running. He's been (I feel) intentionally vague about where I should look to publish this in... So I need some advice.
    Without giving much away, the field/subfield is Condensed Matter Physics/Thin Films. Essentially over a course of dozens of runs with widely ranging parameters, we've found evidence that suggests a more stable configuration of TixCy at high temperatures, despite the ratio of Ti:C varying from 70:30 to 49:51.

    The synthesis technique is not new nor particularly exciting, but the results might suggest why its so difficult to obtain the stoichiometric ratio we're really looking for.

    So.. WHERE in the world could I publish this? Most of the journals available to me via sciencedirect are focused on novel techniques or new synthesis, whereas this is something interesting about a known coating. Thin Solid Films is out, as is Surface Coating and Technology as it doesn't fall within the scope of their publishing aims.

    So I'm kind of at a loss of how to compare journals and what they accept and how prestigious they are and their impact.

    Also, if it matters, this is my very first chance/opportunity at publishing and I'm an undergrad physics student in the US.
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2012
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 7, 2012 #2


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    I'm not particularly familiar with your field, but what I often do is just start writing. If you're worried about formatting, just pick a format at random. By the time you have a first draft, you can look at the majority of your references, and often that will give you a clue as to where you should submit.
  4. Mar 7, 2012 #3
    Phys. Rev. B brief reports or Journal of Alloys and Compounds come to mind, but I'm no expert on the subject either.

    Do your literature research. You will see that a lot of previous research the same of similar systems was published in just a few journals. How long were these articles, and how long should your's be compared to that, given that you will cite them and build on their research?

    Start writing and don't worry about the length. It is often better to write a long, explicit first draft and then boil it down to the essential. Doing the opposite (start out too short and then jam in details and missing information) usually leads to a big mess. Save the long text, it may eventually be useful for compiling a thesis or report of some kind.

    I usally end up writing two manuscripts. When writing the first I (hopefully, when everything goes well) finally figure out what is really going on and how things fit in and how they should be presented. Then I throw away everything and start over, having a better view of the bigger picture.

    Just write. Start with the easy parts (summary of previous work, description of the apparatus) and work towards the difficult part (interpretation, conclusion). Don't bother your professor with every paragraph you've written. Write a few pages, and when you think they are 80% done discuss what you have and how to proceed.
  5. Mar 8, 2012 #4
    That's kind of the conclusion I came up with- that is, to write and then worry about formatting. Thanks so much for the push in the right direction... it helped alot!!
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