Flourish: An Electronic Newsletter for Scholarly Writers
June 2010 – February 2011

vol. 7, no.1

It is February 2011. Do you know where your unpublished article is? Is it resting under that stack of student essays you must grade? Is it buried on the old laptop you no longer use? When you open Microsoft Word, does it appear under “Recent Documents” you have opened?

If not, perhaps today is a good day to find it, open it up, and spend just a few minutes on it. Put a citation in proper format. Look up the page number for that quote on Google Books. Put a few notes in the conclusion about the significance of the argument. Then, maybe tomorrow or next week, it will be easier to open up and do more. The longer it has been since you opened the article, the colder it gets and the harder it is to open, so today, just pull the article out of the freezer and get it back onto the stove.

If you know exactly where your unpublished article is and have been working on it, steadily or not, good for you. Keep going. I recently submitted an article on representations of slavery in eighteenth-century Ethiopian texts, a project I began over six years ago. Never say never! Except, wait, did I mention that I have a few last quotes in Ge’ez I have to enter before the article is ready to be published? And that I had planned to be completely done with this article by last September? And that I’m still tempted to go to the Addis Ababa University library and look up one more cite? Sometimes the problem is not so much getting writing done as getting writing done. If that’s your problem, it is clear that I’m in no position to advise you!

Workbook Anniversary

Writing Your Journal Article in Twelve Weeks is still selling well. We are at the two-year anniversary of its publication (February 13) and the book has sold over 12,000 copies. It has a lifetime Amazon sales rank average of 9,929, but most months has an average rank around 7,500. I know this is partly thanks to many of you who have recommended the book to others.

Workbook Spanish Translation

The workbook has been translated into Spanish by Sylvia Podolsky Ostrowiak and Alejandra Medrano for the academic publisher FLASCO (Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences) in Mexico City as Cómo escribir un artículo académico en 12 semanas: Guía para publicar con éxito. The editor Benjamin Temkin, who arranged the translation in a mere six months, launched the book at the Guadalajara International Book Fair in November and promptly sold out the copies he brought. The book is available for sale on Amazon and other outlets.

Workbook Revision

The publisher is urging me to prepare a second edition, which I won’t do for several years yet, but please send along any comments, corrections, or suggestions. Some alert editorial types have sent me notes on typos and grammatical errors, so I think I have that, but more general suggestions for improvement and examples are always welcome. In particular, if you become aware of any recommendations in the book that have been superseded by technology, please let me know. I’m sure some materials will be dated.

News from the Editor

My research on female saints in Ethiopia is going along very well. I was able to travel to Lake Tana and see the monastery devoted to Walatta Petros, whose hagiography I am working on translating, editing, and publishing with Michael Kleiner. I’ve posted many pictures on Facebook and a few on my website. Apologies for the delay in sending Flourish out, I didn’t have a good internet connection before but things should improve a bit now. I do have some guest edited issues which I will be sending out in the next months.