Blog Writing Guidelines

Interested in writing a blog post?

There are various ways to communicate your research or relevant topic area through Animal Ecology in Focus, with #StoryBehindThePaper research summaries, topical community posts and updates from events you’ve attended.

All blog posts are relatively short, written to a wider ‘popular science’ audience (i.e. not too much jargon or heavy statistics) and have plenty of room for creativity! Our previous guest contributors have used a range of different styles, for example:

When writing please follow these guidelines:

  1. Think about your audience. Posts should be relevant and accessible to those involved in all aspects of animal ecology. If writing about your research, make sure you focus on the key findings and broad implications
  2. Write in plain language. Try to avoid academic jargon. Remember to define acronyms and initialisms at their first use, unless they are commonly known, for example ‘UK’ or ‘DNA’.
  3. Be personable. Use the first person (I/we) and a friendly tone of voice. Your post should be less formal than a research article. Try to use the active voice instead of the passive (‘we did’ rather than ‘this was done’).
  4. Remember the evidence. Back up what you say by embedding links in the text instead of using citations and references. Make a clear distinction between fact and your own opinion.
  5. Visuals are key. Please remember to send photos, videos, illustrations or infographics with your text. Make sure you have permission from the image/video owner and anyone who appears in the photo/video.
  6. Headings and titles help. Remember to include a title with your text. Consider adding subheadings to break up the post and make it easier to read.
  7. Keep it simple. Try to stick to 500-750 words for your blog. Split your text into shorter sentences and paragraphs, again so it is easier to read.
  8. Use British English (-ise, -re, -our, ll, double vowels, -ence, -ogue) for English language posts.
  9. Translated blog posts. We are able to publish translated blog posts alongside an English version. If you’re interested in providing a copy in another language, please let us know when getting in touch with us about writing a post.
  10. Social media handles. Please provide any relevant Twitter handles we can tag when promoting your post on social media.

Questions? If you have any questions or would like to discuss your potential blog post in more detail, please email our Blog Associate Editors at JAEblogeditor@gmail.com, complete our Contact us form, or message the journal (admin@journalofanimalecology.org).

All posts will be edited by our Blog Associate Editors to ensure they read well, fit the blog’s scope and is accessible to a general audience before it is published.

Ready to send us your post?

If you have written your post and you are ready to send it to us, as a general guideline, blog posts should contain the following:

  • Title:
  • Author(s):
  • A few short sentences to introduce yourself:
  • Main text [max. 1000 words]:
  • Photos/Images/Figures/Videos/Sounds [Please provide at least one, with copyright and credit]:
  • Featured image [At least 1200 by 675 pixels]:
  • Social media plug [max. 200 characters, and if you want author handles and a photo]:

Translated blog posts

We encourage authors to provide a second blog post in their first language or the language relevant to the country in which the research was conducted. The translated post will be published on the blog and the two posts will be linked together. Please note that the translated blog post will not be copyedited and will be published as provided by the authors.