Be a JARNA contributor
Alison M New
For referencing New AM. Be a JARNA contributor. Journal of the Australasian Rehabilitation Nurses’ Association 2023; 25(1):2
As 2023 ends, thank you all for your support of our professional journal. This support was evident at our recent ARNA conference in Canberra, where I was again in awe of the professionalism, skill and creativity shown by the presenters. Sadly not everyone could make it to Canberra, so JARNA, as several people commented, becomes an even more important opportunity to highlight and share rehabilitation nurses’ knowledge, skills and experience.
“It’s not for me,” I hear you say – and be reassured that you are not alone. “Write for JARNA – would anyone be interested in what I’m doing?” “But this is not research – does JARNA accept that?” The answer to all these questions is a resounding yes! And while the formal research we publish in JARNA is important, it is just as important to highlight the other clever work happening in rehab services across Australia and New Zealand. So, while it can be daunting here are some ideas that I hope may help you get started with writing for JARNA.
Firstly, you might have a point of view about something in your rehab nursing practice or may wish to respond to an Editorial. A Letter to the Editor is an ideal way to do this. Or you might be an experienced rehab nurse with knowledge about an important clinical or controversial issue that is keeping you up at night? Well great (not the bit about keeping you up at night), and this situation calls for an opinion piece or clinical commentary. Not so keen on writing alone? Then think ‘team’, as in you may be part of a talented quality improvement (QI) initiative team. Given that most QI starts with a clinical problem, it is almost guaranteed that you will not be the first (or only) team to face this. Other rehab nurses will want to hear about it (and what you did) so a short QI report in JARNA is a very good option.
Now let us tackle what for many is the scariest part of drafting an article for JARNA (and this ARNA member said it beautifully) when she told me “I like the idea (to write for JARNA) but I need some help.” The truth is that like anything new, writing is a skill that can be learned with some help and the more we do it the better we get at it and the more confident we become. If ‘one on one’ is your thing, then we have experienced ARNA members who will collaborate with you to help you refine your writing skills. But if you prefer a group, then our new ARNA Writing for Publication Community of Practice can help you connect with like-minded rehab nursing colleagues, to have some fun and learn with and from each other. Last (but certainly not least) is that we have Greg Paull and his talented team at Cambridge Publishing to help as well. Cambridge has partnered with ARNA for many years to ensure that JARNA continues to highlight the important and essential contribution that rehabilitation nurses make in the lives of individuals and communities everywhere. The reality is that we can all usually find several reasons why we cannot write something for publication, but the trick, as someone much smarter than I put it, “is to find the one reason we should.” So thank you in advance and I look forward to reading your article in the future.
Alison M New RN, BHSc (Nursing), MClin Rehab, MHSc (Clinical Education)
ARNA National President