“Matter your lightsaber size does not. How you use it will”
–Yoda, Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
There may be several possible interpretations of Yoda’s adage; likewise, there are several possible interpretations of everything you are writing or are about to write!
Consider the following interpretation so that we may apply the quote to publishing:
How you use it. Craft your manuscript as you would have others craft a manuscript for you. Your thoughts are incredibly powerful! And negative or worry-thoughts often lead to avoidance behaviors. Therefore, if you worry about the size or length of your paper before you begin, you will very likely not begin!
Tell your story and do so in a way that others will learn something and not be distracted by fluff. Make sure the goals and aims/hypotheses are clear from the “get-go”; and remind yourself as you write that every single section of the paper is meant to support those initially detailed hypotheses. If you lose track of your principal aims, then there is no way a reader or reviewer can keep track of them.
Think about your paper as a story. Your manuscript IS telling a story…a story of those aims you so clearly outlined; a story with a beginning, middle and an end. Draw in your reader the same way you were drawn to pursue those goals and aims in the first place!
Write your aims/hypotheses clearly at the beginning of each section. You can always delete them afterwards, but this will make it implicit to yourself why you are writing each section. This in turn builds confidence and confidence bolsters momentum. Forward momentum pretty much negates the “freeze effect”!
Keep reading… Episode II, Part 3