Guidelines for Submitting Articles
Thank you for your interest in writing for the Psychotherapy Networker. As you’ll be able to tell from reading the magazine, our articles cover a variety of issues
related to all aspects of clinical work, supervision, research, and practice, as well as the culture at large. Please note that the Networker is not the appropriate
place to submit academic research papers or theses. Rather, we’re interested in your personal stories as a clinician of exploration, discovery, challenge, insight,
growth, learning, and questioning.
We’re especially interested in submissions for the Case Studies, In Consultation, and Family Matters departments. The average word
count we’re looking for is 2,000. We do not pay for submissions. Feature articles are generally 5,000 words in length, but are rarely accepted unsolicited.
Questions to ask yourself prior to writing:
- How does this particular way of thinking about a specific topic make it fresh?
- Is the topic thoughtful and intellectually engaging?
- Will it touch the reader emotionally?
- What’s distinctive about my piece?
Requirements of the writing process:
- Use a clear, concise, engaging, and accessible style that’s free of jargon.
- If referring to research findings, explain their significance in plain terms.
- Write the article in the voice and style you’d use in having a lengthy conversation about the topic with a close colleague.
- Please read a copy of the magazine to get a sense of the kind of writing we publish prior to writing your article.
To submit materials:
Please email submissions to email@example.com, and include your name, address, and phone number. Note that due to the volume of submissions we receive, it may take us between 6 and 8 weeks to review your article and contact you if we're interested. If you don’t hear from us, please assume that we won't be able to use your work.
If you'd rather submit your article by snail mail, please send two copies to the address below, along with your name, address, email address, and phone number on the top of each copy.
5135 MacArthur Blvd., NW
Washington, DC 20016
Note: We do not return manuscripts, so be sure to keep a copy. There's no need to include a return envelope with your submission.
- Preliminary review may take as much as 10-12 weeks.
- Unfortunately, because of the volume of materials we receive, we’re not able to give feedback on articles we’re not able to use.
- If the article is accepted, the editing process usually requires at least two revisions.
- If you have any questions about submissions, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tips for writing a Networker Case Study:
First things first—read as many Networker case studies as you can before writing your own.
The first few paragraphs of your case study should hook your audience into wanting to keep reading and digging into the details of the unique approach you offered in your work. So make sure to elucidate what’s distinctive about your case. This introduction should clarify right off the bat the problem this case presents---and what’s unusual about the treatment method. Here are a few questions to ask yourself as you write the first few paragraphs:
- Why should the reader care about this case?
- What’s the organizing principle?
- What’s the problem it will solve?
- What’s the new idea/approach we’ll learn from reading it?
Getting into It
Before you delve into the body of your case study, decide on the three or four main points you want to communicate to the reader. Keep these points in mind as you structure your piece. Here are a few more guidelines:
Share your thoughts
Rather than offering readers a distant fly-on-the-wall perspective, let the reader into your thought process as a clinician. Don’t be afraid to share your
initial impressions and how they changed as you progressed in your work with a particular client. Explain your thinking around certain decision points in the
case. Why did you say this instead of that? Why did you choose this technique over that intervention? If you made a misstep along the way, share that with your
readers. Note any surprises that came up for you as you worked with your client. What challenges did you face? Did the case derail at any point? How did you get
back on track? In general, perfect cases tied up in neat bows are not only uninteresting, but also unbelievable. A narrator who isn’t afraid to be vulnerable is
the best kind of storyteller.
Tell a story
In essence, Networker case studies are engaging stories, ones that highlight unique ideas and approaches in the consulting room. A good case study should
read like a narrative and include snippets of relevant dialogue between you and your client. Let us hear voices and see your work in action. Avoid bogging your reader
down with lots of jargon. While the focus of the case study should be on what the reader can learn from it, you still need to use storytelling tools—like concrete
descriptions and dialogue—to paint a vivid picture of your therapeutic work. For example, rather than telling us that your client looked distraught,
show it to us by briefly describing the client’s body language.
Wrapping It Up
Ending are hard for almost every writer, and there’s no one right way to tie up your piece. However, you should avoid concluding the piece with a simple summary of the case or a restatement of your main points. Instead, consider ending with something fresh that invites further reflection from your reader. Here are a few ideas:
- End with a moving moment that’s exemplary of the overall outcome of the case.
- End with a short description of how the case changed the way you approach therapy or your interaction with a particular type of client.
- End with a note on how the case challenges conventional notions of how to practice therapy.