Author Writing Guidelines

How to start the journey. Science is for everyone, and as scientists at Institut Pasteur, we should be the first to make it so; to share both our knowledge and our passion for scientific research. If you agree, then this is the place for you! No one starts as an expert, so here are a few tips on how to share your inspiration with others; and don’t worry, we are here to couple you with experts that guide you through the process. 

 

The What and the Why. First of all, it is very important to think about what you want to share with the reader and why. Think about the clear piece of information, and the drive behind it. Chances are that what got you interested in that topic would capture the attention of the reader too! So define the topic (choose the title if it helps) and start by telling us a bit about your personal interest in this particular scientific topic.

 

Tone and Style. Remember, this is not a scientific publication: aim to be genuine and casual, however, avoid slang and jargon. Try to use the active voice and write in positive language instead of using negations. Take time to practice and explore your personal style.

 

Content. Having an entertaining style is always a bonus, but being clear and accurate is key. When in doubt, just keep it simple and succinct. Treat the content with the rigurosity you do science. Define paragraphs clearly and in a logical flow from what was originally defined in the title. Aim for 1-2 pages. Clear and scannable headlines can make a real difference! Have a concise and focused message for each paragraph and make sure to define your terms before introducing new ones or building on them. Try to remember your first scientific paper read...could you get past the abstract? Readers will understand logic easily, but might not be familiar with all the terms we use regularly in science. Try to keep it simple and only introduce indispensable terms that you thoroughly explain. Where possible, try to use analogies to guide your way through complicated terms and concepts, but keep a constant theme. Also, avoid using acronyms as much as possible; they have stylistic value and for one or two main aspects it can be impactful, however more can become overwhelming. 

 

References. Only relevant, accessible references which can help your reader find more helpful information. Try not to over-reference; for this type of articles informative links are also acceptable.

 

 

What you can expect to achieve:

  • Explore your writing style

  • Improve your writing in English / French

  • Improve conveying science in a simple clear and catchy way

  • Write about a scientific topic you enjoy

 

If successful, your article will go through a revision process involving specialist editors, copy editors and the Communication and Education departments of the Institut Pasteur. The original and the English / French translation will then be published on our website in collaboration with the Institut Pasteur.

 

Don’t forget we are here to help you! It is a learning curve and a fun challenge. Submit your proposal here.

 

Happy Writing! Sincerely, 

 

The Piplettes Team