How do you decide where to publish your precious research? Do you have a small stable of journals ranked in your own mind? Do some papers clearly seem to be higher value than others? We knew the field much better when we worked on wasps because we had conceptual journals, very high impact journals, insect journals, and social insect journals. There isn’t a good taxon specific journal for Dictyostelium. It is in the Amoebazoa, so a protist. But it has been considered both a plant and a fungus, or at least old papers turn up in both American Journal of Botany and Mycology. But I digress. Where to publish is an important question.
It is important to pick the right journal so you don’t have to revise too often for new journals. It might be good to try a variety of journals to reach people that check different journals. I wonder if anyone has just switched entirely to PLoS One? It will be interesting to see how the Peerage of Science does. Under this model, we handle the submitting and reviewing, then the journals shop for papers there.
There’s a thoughtful post over on Jabberwocky on impact factors, networks, and a better way of evaluating journals based on paper networks, weighting a paper cited by other papers that are cited more than those that reach dead ends. My impression is that the impact factor of journals is more important for researchers in Europe than here. Not that we don’t try for the top whenever we can. For me, that top is Science, a non-profit journal published by a scientific society I belong to.
In journal club, it is good to read papers from different journals and notice what they publish. We have had papers in genetics turned down by journals we thought were appropriate because they weren’t functional enough.
Most of all, do great, fun research, with the eventual journal in mind from the beginning. From my Creativity course, today, how to have fun!