1. Palatnik, AnneMarie RN, APN-BC, MSN

Article Content

As editor-in-chief of Nursing2009 Critical Care, one of my goals is to create opportunities to help you achieve your potential as a nursing professional. You may not have thought of writing as one of those opportunities, but it's not as hard as you think. Perhaps you have a particular interest or expertise in a topic, disease process, new diagnostic test, or treatment strategy. Or you've recently given a case presentation that's worth sharing with a larger audience. Writing lets other nurses gain from your knowledge and passion, improves nursing practice, and ultimately optimizes patient care.

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So here it is: I'm inviting you to submit an article or query to Nursing2009 Critical Care. If you have an idea for a feature article or for one of our departments, such as Pearls in Palliation, send it to me at If the topic fits the journal's needs, we'll guide you through the rest of the article submission process (described below). Before you select your topic, though, visit and click on Nursing2009 Critical Care to get the author guidelines for more details on the writing and reviewing process. (You also can visit for more writing tips from the former editor-in-chief of our sister journal, Nursing2009.)


Feature articles for Nursing2009 Critical Care typically run 2,000 to 2,500 words and cover a wide range of clinical topics of interest to critical care nurses. Departments, which focus on a specific topic such as diagnostic tests (Diagnostic Update) or cardiac care (Heart Beats) are shorter, typically 1,000 to 1,500 words. You may feel more comfortable starting with a shorter, more focused department article.


Once you pick your topic, research it on the Internet, in books, and in journals. Usually, after I research my topic, I spend some time thinking about the take-home message I want to convey to the reader, and how to present the information in an order that make sense and will be easy for readers to remember. I'll create a quick outline of how I think the piece should flow.


When I sit down to write, sometimes I struggle with the beginning, so I may start writing somewhere in the middle. Sometimes I'll even start with the ending and then figure out to get there. Before submitting an article, I'll review it by reading it out loud. Reading aloud really helps me with the flow and helps to make sure it will make sense to others.


Remember to write in conversational tone (not like a school paper) and to gear your article toward critical care nurses.


The last step is to upload your article and curriculum vitae to We'll take it from there.


So what do you say? Are you up for the challenge? I am looking forward to hearing from you. Until the next time: be healthy, be happy, and be great advocates for your patients!!


AnneMarie Palatnik, RN, APN-BC, MSN

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Director of Clinical Learning, Center for Learning, Virtua Health, Mount Laurel, N.J.