How an Authorial Voice Can Impact Journal Acceptance


The general public doesn’t have the education, experience, and access to research that you, as an academic scholar, have. Instead, they rely on people like you to tell them what they need to know about the world around them, including everything from artificial intelligence and technology to the humanities and society.

Because of the importance they place on what you share with them, it’s vital that you demonstrate your authority. While the information you provide does this to some degree, it’s the authorial voice you present that truly cements your scholarly impact. Without a voice that projects your expertise to your reader, everything you say is cast into doubt.

For that reason, most journals won’t accept an article that lacks a strong authorial voice. So how do you present this expertise, and what else do you need for journal acceptance? Keep reading to find out.

The Factors That Impact Journal Acceptance

The voice you project throughout your manuscript plays a substantial role in whether your work is accepted and published. However, before an editor will read far enough to see what kind of voice you have, you must have everything else in place.

Here are some of the main factors that impact rejection versus acceptance. They’re simple to ensure you’ve included them, so use this quick checklist to ensure your work isn’t rejected for something insignificant.

●      The author’s information, including your email address, mailing address (complete with zip code), and one contact person. Remember, even if you worked with multiple authors, there can only be one first-listed writer, and that person should be the contact.

●      A manuscript with keywords listed on the summary page, figures with relevant captions included, and tables with titles, descriptions, and footnotes clearly designed. Keep in mind that tables and figures may not transfer to other document formats, so check with the publisher to see what kind of file format you should be submitting.

●      Include all files, such as the manuscript, supplemental files, and abstracts.

●      Your manuscript should be free from spelling and grammar errors. Consider hiring an academic editor before submitting your paper to a journal. Yes, they have editors on staff there, but the fewer problems your paper has, the more legitimate your authorial voice becomes.

●      All references in the text are cited in the Reference List, and any copyrighted material has the necessary permissions attached.

●      Include a competing interests statement, whether you have any or not.

These are vital parts of every submission, but there may be others, as well. Check with the journal’s author requirements to verify that you’ve included everything. Your professionalism here is part of your authorial voice. If you’re unable to handle following directions, it can come across to the editor as unprofessional.

Why Your Authorial Voice Matters

The next step is to find your writing voice. Your authorial voice matters because it’s the only thing you have besides the information you’ve written that convinces the reader you’re an expert. They should listen to what you have to say.

Without a confident voice, even the most impressive information is seen as unconvincing. Your ideas appear to the reader as suggestions, postulations, theories, or opinions. Instead, they should be presented as factual information derived from the evidence of your legitimate research. Without a strong voice, journals will almost immediately reject your paper.

However, an authorial voice doesn’t have to mean that you include an abundance of personal thoughts, opinions, and self-reflection. Evidence and data can go hand-in-hand with your ideas and experiences, but both must balance each other out. If your language is too inflated and full of “I” statements, that all-crucial authorial voice becomes pompous and condescending.

Let Impactio Help You Find Your Voice

If you’re uncertain about the tone your writing is taking, reach out to other scholars through the Impactio network. Impactio’s platform connects scientific experts like you together to expand your ideas and improve your scholarly influence.

Take your overall manuscript, get rid of the identifying parts that you don’t want others to see until you’re published, and send a snippet to a few trusted Impactio contacts. Ask them to tell you how they perceive your voice. Use that feedback to adjust your writing until you have the authorial tone you’re aiming for, then submit your work to the publisher.

After publishing, follow your manuscript’s influence using Impactio’s data analytics tools. The quantitative and qualitative data will show you where your strengths and weaknesses are, and help you improve your future publications.


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