The Magazine of the Military Cyber Professionals Association

Author’s Guide and Editorial Process

Introduction

This Author’s Guide is intended to guide potential authors through the submission process for publication in Cyber, the magazine of the Military Cyber Professionals Association (MCPA). This guide outlines the types of authors and articles featured in Cyber, discusses the submission and editorial process and timeline, and presents guidelines for article content and format.

For additional information, contact the Cyber editorial staff at magazine.staff@milcyber.org.

Potential Authors

Who writes for the magazine?

Cyber is devoted to developing the quality and diversity of cyber-related discourse. We have a robust collection of authors, including active cyber professionals across the military, government, and industry; professors and other faculty; and students.

What do we cover?

Cyber covers a wide range of topics related to cyber and national security: policy, strategy, technology, infrastructure, training, and workforce management. For a better understanding of our focus, consult our previously published articles: http://magazine.milcyber.org/.

Please do not hesitate to contact our editorial team to discuss potential topics.

Publication Process

Submission Process

Cyber follows a rolling submission process for online publication and accepts articles for submission at all times. Potential authors may submit their articles directly to the editorial staff at magazine.staff@milcyber.org.

Editorial Process

The Cyber editorial staff will review all submissions for placement within the topical themes of Cyber, quality of argument, and grammar and citation usage. Articles may be accepted, denied, or returned to the author with suggested corrections. The editorial staff will work with authors throughout the revision process. This process typically follows four steps:

  1. General fit for the magazine
  2. Paper wide issues (argument, support/evidence, paragraph flow and organization, etc)
  3. Grammar and spelling
  4. Article metadata and presentation (imagery, citations, abstract, pull quotes, etc)

For more information on this process, see the “Article Guidelines” section below.

Editorial Timeline

Cyber follows a rolling publication schedule, and we aim to notify prospective authors of their initial acceptance (contingent on successful editing) within one week of submission and publish articles within a month of submission.

Prospective authors should remain available throughout the entire editorial process, as each stage of revisions will require author input. Authors are responsible for all necessary changes to submissions; the assigned editor is not authorized to directly make any changes to the submission on behalf of the author, except to fix minor typographical or formatting errors.

In order to publish articles as quickly as possible, authors and editors alike should aim to complete the current stage of editing and/or revising within one week. Articles that languish as “waiting for author input” may be removed from consideration.

Please note, articles vary in their readiness for publication; some articles may require significant editorial effort on the part of the author. This may result in additional rounds of editing or the existing rounds requiring more author input.

Print Edition of Cyber

The MCPA currently publishes an annual print edition of Cyber with the goal of more frequent print editions in the near future (either semi-annually or quarterly). Selected articles that have been published online since the preceding print edition may be included in the current edition. Articles selected for inclusion in the print edition will be subject to an additional round of feedback and revision.

Simultaneous Submission and Prior Publication

Cyber does not allow for simultaneous submission. If you have submitted your article for publication on another website or in another magazine, please wait for that process to be completed before submitting to Cyber.

Cyber generally does not publish works that have been published previously. However, if our editorial staff judges the material to be exceptional or necessary for our membership to be exposed to, we may publish material previously published elsewhere. The submitting author will be responsible for gaining permission to re-publish from the original publication venue, if necessary.

Article Guidelines

1. General Fit

Topic

The foremost consideration for an article’s fit in Cyber magazine is the topic. For more information on appropriate topics, consult the “What do we cover?” section above.

Style

Cyber is an academic and professional magazine, not a journal. As such, it differs stylistically from many of its feeder sources (university coursework, military professional education, etc). Good magazine articles should be able to stand on their own without reference to existing literature or in-depth knowledge of the particular subject. While our readers are generally aware of many different aspects of military cyber topics, our articles should be approachable to those new to the field.

Magazine articles may be written informally, as long as they still present a professional and effective argument. The article need not adhere to a specific outline (“Introduction,” “Contributions,” “Literature Review,” etc), and an informal tone (first person, contractions, etc) is allowed if it does not detract from the article.

Length

Articles typically range from 500 to 5,000 words, exclusive of endnotes and any biographies. However, depending on content, submissions of up to 10,000 words may be considered, but such submissions may be subject to additional revision and a longer publication timeline.

2. Argument and Organization

This stage of the editorial process generally covers the support and evidence you provide for your article’s core argument, as well as the overall organization of the paper, including the logical sequencing of sections and the flow of paragraphs.

3. Grammar and Spelling

Cyber follows the standards below for grammar and style.

  1. Strunk’s Elements of Style - for grammatical questions
  2. DOD Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms (formerly JP 1-02) - for questions on military terms, acronyms, and abbreviations
  3. Merriam-Webster - for questions on spelling and word usage
  4. Associated Press Stylebook - only for questions unable to be answered by one of the other references

Finally, a quick note on abbreviations and acronyms: if the term contains only capital letters (US, CAPT), eschew periods; if the term contains lowercase letters (e.g., Jr.), use periods where appropriate.

4. Article Presentation

Formatting

During the editorial process, your assigned editor will convert your submission into a Google Doc in order to facilitate collaboration throughout the editorial process. Therefore, please submit articles in a simple format. After editing, the article will be reformatted for online publication and, if selected, for the print edition.

Images

Images and graphics are encouraged. To ensure they display properly, please include them as .GIF or .JPG files of at least 500 dpi. The author must ensure that all images are properly licensed or the intellectual property of the submitting author. We recommend searching for free-for-commercial-use images on search engines such as https://www.pexels.com/. If required by license terms, imagery must be correctly cited.

Citations

References should be cited in the text with superscript.

Example: “This sentence is cited.1

For submission, references should be included as footnotes, with the citation content being contained in a footer on the referencing page. We highly recommend authors utilize the built-in footnote systems within Google Docs (preferred) or Microsoft Word (acceptable). Citations will be converted to endnotes for publication.

For Internet sources, we recommend that you include a full citation, including the web address. We will include only a link to the website for Internet publication, but the full citation is useful for print publication.

We do not require a specific citation style. However, citations must be ordered by their placement in the text, have consistent styling within the submission, and present readers with sufficient information to obtain the source material.

Example: “1. Cormen, Thomas L., Charles E. Leiserson, Ronald L. Rivest, and Clifford Stein. Introduction to Algorithms. 3rd ed. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2009.”

Because many of our articles discuss contemporary topics, references may be to news articles, blogs, press releases, and other sources in addition to peer-reviewed sources. Authors are responsible for ensuring the quality and reliability of all source material.

Article Abstract

Please include an abstract summarizing your article. This blurb will be used to introduce/advertise your article on the website and social media. Abstracts are limited to 100 words.

Author’s Biography and Picture

Please include a biography detailing your name, title, professional experience and expertise, and education. This biography may be no more than 100 words. If you have co-authors, please submit a biography for each author; co-authors’ biographies are limited to 100 words each.

Authors may submit a headshot to be published alongside their biography. All submitted imagery should be at least 500 dpi.