How to prepare an article for MJoTA: write as if for a client in the health industry.
Health industries are public and private or both: federal, state, and local governments; pharmaceutical, biologic and device companies; healthcare practices; or universities colleges and schools. Clients from all these industries pay for articles, for books, journal articles, anything that can be read or spoken.
A major reason MJoTA was started was to showcase the writing skills of professional scientists and healthcare workers who wanted work as professional medical writers. And every article, every assignment given to students in the Medical Writing Institute has the goal of being included in a medical writing portfolio.
MJoTA publishes essays and journal articles from anyone who has a good essay or a good journal article. If you have trouble with grammar, work through the textbook Strunk and White. Even if you don’t have trouble with grammar, work through Strunk and White. Nothing makes a potential client run away faster than a perception of bad grammar and bad spelling.
Essays are opinion, and references are needed to back up claims. Usually an essay is written about a single event or series of events and the dates and what happened need to be verifiable.
Journal articles summarize scientific data. MJoTA will only publish journal articles which follow rules of content, grammar and style.
Rules for journal articles:
- The title summarizes the article.
- The author wrote the article
- If the author did not write the article, he or she needs to have found the information and compiled it, and paid the writer. This needs to be stated in the acknowledgments, along with the name person who wrote the article.
- All references need to be sent with the final article to the editor overseeing the project. If you have only the abstract, you need a good reason for only having the abstract
- Data must come from original sources. If a newspaper wrote about a clinical trial, get the original report of the clinical trial, which can be clinical trial documents or journal articles from the pharmaceutical company. Original sources include the CDC publication MMWR: the CDC collects its own data. WHO publications may or may not be original.
- Data from review articles may not be used: find the original source
- The references must follow PubMed style in the order: authors, title, publication year volume number pages, eg Dodgson SJ, Fisher WK, Thompson EO. Studies on monotreme proteins. IV. Amino acid sequence of haemoglobin-IA of the echidna; a comparison of major haemoglobins from two geographical groups of echidnas. Aust J Biol Sci. 1974 Apr;27(2):111-5.
- Include all authors in references. All of them.