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The Comics Grid publishes one issue per year, with rapid publication as soon as articles are ready. Submissions can be sent throughout the year, however editorial deadlines are:
The Comics Grid is a rapid publication journal - once your article has passed peer review it will be published immediately, unlike traditional publishing models which can mean a wait of months or even years before publication.
Prospective authors are welcome to send outlines or drafts to the editor in advance of making a formal submission. Manuscripts (in English) must be submitted via the journal website. Submission of an article will be taken to imply that it is unpublished and not being considered for publication elsewhere. Contributors are responsible for fully attributing, including any copyright or registered trademark notices, of any material (including illustrations) for which they do not hold copyright. (See our Copyright Notice below). They are warmly encouraged to use with preference images from open access repositories, under creative common licence, and the like. Revisions may be required before a decision is made to accept or reject the paper.
Please note that The Comics Grid requires all submissions to include 1 to 3 images to which the text of the article should refer directly. All authorship and copyright of third-party content posted for research purposes should be appropriately attributed, cited and include copyright notices including year of publication/registration. All images should be uploaded as supplementary files upon submission in the order in which they numbered as figures in the submitted manuscript.
Before submitting an article to the journal, please ensure that the below formatting requirements have been adhered to. Failure to do so may result in delays or rejection of the submission.
Regardless of the article type you are submitting, all submissions must include the following sections as text on the manuscript's file:
Please ensure that all of the following information is fully and correctly entered into the submission system database when making the original submission. This text should be correct for publication:
title; full author name(s); affiliation(s)*; contact email address
*(for affiliation, please include department, institution, city, country)
The text of the article should be prefaced by an indented and italicised abstract of no more than 200 words summarising the main arguments and conclusions of the article.
Please include a list of 5-6 key words after the abstract.
The Abstract and Keywords should also be added to the metadata when making the initial online submission.
A structured introduction to the subject, followed with clear discussion, arguments and conclusions.
All submissions must include at least one image file that the text of the manuscript discusses directly. Book reviews must include an image file of the official book cover. All image files need to be provided in 300 dpi in either .jpg or .png and uploaded as supplementary files. All images need to be captioned with complete bibliography and relevant copyright notices. It is the responsibility of the author to source good quality image files and to include correct bibliographic references for any images cited.
The captions and copyright notices of the images need also to be added to the image files' metadata when making the initial submission. See also Images and figures below.
This section is optional, but if idesired any acknowledgements should be in a separate paragraph, placed after the main text but before the reference list/bibliography.
AUTHOR WRITING GUIDELINES
Capitalisation of titles
NOTE: Tier 1 subheads should follow the same rule as the titles. For lower-level subheads, only capitalise first letter (plus proper nouns).
Articles must be submitted in English. Authors are welcome to use American or British spellings and grammar as long as they are used consistently. Some of the key differences between English and American English include the following:
Please note that when referring to proper nouns and normal institutional titles, you should always use the official, original spelling. For instance, it is Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations, not Alliance of Digital Humanities Organisations.
As with language, American or English spelling and grammar rules may be used as long as they are used consistently. For instance, you may use a serial comma (red, white, and blue) or not (red, white and blue).
We are happy for authors to use either words or figures to represent large figures (i.e. one million or 1,000,000) as long as the usage is consistent within an article. For numbers between zero and twelve we would recommend using words rather than figures, except for when it is a part of a dataset or presented in a table.
When referring to a percentage, please use the words ‘per cent’ rather than the symbol %, again except for when it is a part of a dataset or presented in a table.
Please use single quotation marks except for quotes within another speech, in which case double quotation marks are used.
Acronyms and abbreviations
With abbreviations, the crucial goal is to ensure that the reader – particularly one who may not be fully familiar with the topic or context being addressed – is able to follow along. Spell out almost all acronyms on first use, indicating the acronym in parentheses immediately thereafter. Use the acronym for all subsequent references. You do not need to spell out abbreviations for US, UK, EU, UN and DC, as in Washington, DC.
Images and figures
The Comics Grid requires all submissions to include 1 to 3 images to which the text of the article should refer directly. All copyright of third-party content posted for research purposes should be appropriately cited and include copyright notices declaring it belongs to its original owners and who those owners are. No challenge to any owner’s rights should be intended or inferred, and all images should adequately refer to their original source, including page and panel numbers, or URLs, when appropriate.
Figure numbers, titles and captions must be provided in the text file. These can be placed either in the text, or as a list at the end of the article. Please ensure that all figures are cited within the text of the submission (e.g Figure 1; Figure 2, etc).
NOTE: Please supply all figure files separately (and not embedded in the text file), if possible in colour and at a resolution of at least 150dpi (300dpi preferred). There will be a webpage accessed upon submission where all image files can be uploaded independently from the main text. Standard formats accepted are: JPG, TIFF, GIF, PNG, EPS.
The same principles which apply to figures apply to tables. They should be necessary and should not repeat significant pieces of information already included in the text.
Use of footnotes/endnotes
Please use endnotes rather than footnotes (which we will refer to as ‘Notes’ at the end of the article, before ‘References’). All notes should be used only where crucial clarifying information needs to be conveyed. Avoid using notes for purposes of referencing; use in-text citations instead (see below).
Authors are strongly encouraged to use parenthetical citations according to the following style (Adam 1984: 120) For publications authored and published by organisations, use the short form of the organisation’s name or its acronym in lieu of the full name. For instance, do NOT do the following (Comic Book Legal Defense Fund 2000); instead, you should write (CBLDF 2000). Also, please do not include URLs (web addresses) in parenthetical citations.
References containing works cited within an article will be listed at the end of the article, in alphabetical order of authors’ surnames). All reading materials should be included in ‘References’ – works which have not been cited within the main text of the article, but which the author wishes to share with the reader, must be cited as additional information in endnotes explaining the relevance of the work. This will ensure that all works within the reference list are correctly cited within the text.
Authors are encouraged to include DOI or URL links to all available references. These should be placed at the end of the reference details.
This journal uses the Harvard (author-date) system – see below for examples of how to format.
For additional information on how to reference comic works, please see http://www.comicsresearch.org/CAC/cite.html.
Gordon, I Jancovich, M and McAllister, M P (eds.) 2007 Film and Comic Books. Jackson: University of Mississippi Press.
Achebe, C 1995 Colonialist Criticism. In: Ashcroft, B et al The Post Colonial Studies Reader. London: Routledge. pp. 57–61.
Ward, G 1998 Publishing in the Digital Age. How Digital Technology is Revolutionising the World of Books, Magazines, Newspapers and Printing. London: Bowerdean.
Chapters within edited books:
Samson, C 1970 Problems of information studies in history. In: S. Stone, ed. 1980. Humanities information research. Sheffield: CRUS. pp.44-68.
NOTE: If multiple works by the same author are being listed, please re-type the author’s name out for each entry, rather than using a long dash.
Martin, L 2010 Bombs, bodies and biopolitics: Securitizing the subject at airport security. Social and Cultural Geography, 11(1): 17-34. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14649360903414585.
Labarre, N 2013. Incomplete descriptions in Raymond’s Secret Agent X-9. The Comics Grid: Journal of Comics Scholarship 3(1):5, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5334/cg.ae
NOTE: Please include DOIs for journal articles where possible.
Comics and images from comics publications:
Clowes, D 2008 Ghost World: Special Edition. Seattle: Fantagraphics.
Fox, G F (w), Sekowsky, M (p), and Sachs, B (i). The Wheel of Misfortune. Justice League of America #6 Aug.-Sep. 1961 National Comics Publications [DC Comics].
Starlin, J (w, p, i) Weiss, A (i) 1975 The Judgment!. Strange Tales, 180. Marvel Comics.
Munroe, R 2010 Morning. xkcd. Available at: http://xkcd.com/395/.
NOTE: For variations, please adapt the examples provided in Ellis, A (1998) Comic Art Citation Examples. Comic Art in Scholarly Writing. A Citation Guide. Available at http://www.comicsresearch.org/CAC/cite.html#e16 [Accessed 9 August 2013]
Tate, P 2007 Illicit organ trade increasing. The Jordan Times, 6 June, p. 3.
The Guardian/Reuters 2010 iPads sell faster than iPhones. 03 May. Available at http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2010/may/03/ipad-apple-iphone-sales. [Last accessed 9 August 2013].
Vincent, P L 2009 Spinning a dark web of fun. The Hindu, 24 September. Available at http://www.hindu.com/mp/2009/11/28/stories/2009112850300100.htm. [Last accessed 3 October 2010].
Lynch, M 2003 Dialogue in an age of terror. In: The Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association, Philadelphia, PA on 18 August 2003, pp. 4-7.
Zaffran, M 2010. Graphic Medicine. In: Comics and Medicine: Medical Narrative in Graphic Novels conference, Institute of Advanced English Studies, London on 17 June 2010.
Organisational publications/Grey literature:
World Health Organization 2010 The world health report – Health systems financing: the path to universal coverage. Geneva, Switzerland: WHO.
Theses and dissertations:
Yudis, A 2004 Failed responsibility of the media in the war on Iraq. Unpublished thesis (PhD), University of Manchester.
Tinker, E 2009 Identity and Form in Alternative Comics, 1967 - 2007. (PhD), University College London. Available at: http://emmatinker.oxalto.co.uk/ [Last accessed 9 August 2013].
Webpages / PDFs/ Blog posts/Online resources (please ensure URLs and DOIs are provided, when available):
Tauber, M 2009 Lucy Shelton Caswell Interview - part 1. 30 January 2009. Available at: http://matttauber.blogspot.com/2009/01/lucy-shelton-caswell-interview-part-1.html . [Last accessed 16 October 2012]
Wikipedia Comic book. Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comic_book. [Last accessed 9 August 2013].
Monkey See Videos 2008 How to Protect Comic Books. Available at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EVqm9B76LMI [Last accessed 20 October 2009]
Submissions in graphic form (including but not limited to drawings, comics, and diagrams) can be of any type described above, from Research to Commentary. Depending on the chosen category, they may be peer-reviewed before publication.
All graphic submissions must include an abstract, references, and an introductory text that explains the method and the objectives of the submission. This text helps us to index the submission because it is fully searchable, whereas independant images are not.
As with images in regular articles, all files must be provided in 300 dpi in either .jpg or .png. You may need to adjust hand-drawn submissions to ensure that the scanning process results in a clear and legible picture.
Nevertheless, the aesthetic qualities of graphic submissions are less important than their ability to convey information clearly. Visual scholarship should aim at presenting knowledge in a legible, efficient, and productive way, subordinating aesthetic choices to these goals.
While being a skilled drafstman can improve the efficiency of such communication, minimalist solutions (see “Creativity and project management: a comic”, by Phil Jones Jones, James Evans) and technical options (see “Materiality Comics”, by Aaron Kashtan) are perfectly viable alternatives, provided the form is coherent with the content and the epistemic objectives of the submission.
Graphic research is a time-consuming process, even compared to traditional forms of scholarly publication. We therefore encourage scholars wishing to submit graphic pieces to first contact the graphic editor with their project, presenting the subject of the piece as well as the graphic strategies they intend to use. This collaborative approach is meant to generate useful feedback and to refine the submissions, but it does not guarantee that they will go through the peer-review process successfully.
Additionally, we will consider submissions in “thumbnail” or “storyboard” form for peer review. Such submissions should include the complete introductory text and a fully realized graphic sample, but the entire project need not be in fully-rendered graphic form. This process is useful for multiple-page articles in comics form, where the creator does not want to waste time on a fully-rendered project only to have it rejected.
The editors will make sure that reviewers are aware of these submission processes.
As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
This journal is published by the Open Library of Humanities. Unlike many open-access publishers, the Open Library of Humanities does not charge any author fees. This does not mean that we do not have costs. Instead, our costs are paid by an international library consortium.
If your institution is not currently supporting the platform, we request that you ask your librarian to sign up. The OLH is extremely cost effective and is a not-for-profit charity. However, while we cannot function without financial support and we encourage universities to sign up, institutional commitment is not required to publish with us.
Fee waivers do not apply at the Open Library of Humanities because our funding model does not rely on author charges.