My Authors
Read all threads
1/n: So, we just finished reviewing abstracts for NSGC's 2018 Annual Ed Conference & I really enjoyed it! I loved some of the projects—for others I had constructive, diplomatic feedback. Here are some good & bad things that might be helpful to other researchers:
2/n: First, let’s start with the things that I didn’t like: 1. Bad intros. Omit clunky declarative opening lines. When in doubt, type “Purpose:” and go from there. Good intros don’t receive extra points, but you will avoid the dreaded sigh through grinding teeth.
3/n: Intro infatuation. Intros shouldn't be the longest part. Try color-coding each section or a word-count and make a bar graph to see relative length. It's like filling up on breadsticks at a subpar Italian chain restaurant when I came for the osso buco.
4/n: Passive results. If you type “will be presented…” then stop. Imagine your boss calls you in: “It’s about your raise.” “Oh! Is it significant?” S/he shakes their head, “Results will be presented in 3 months and may not be significant.” You, and I, want the results -- today.
5/n: Title infatuation. You thought of an awesome title, except it sort of doesn’t describe your project anymore. The devil on your shoulder whispers: keep it anyway. Do not listen. Kill your darlings, all of them.
6/n: Info is MIA. For some reason, specific pieces of information are missing. Common offenders were methodology, recruitment and/or analysis strategy, & cohort descriptions. Maybe you meant to add them later? Maybe you’re hoping I didn't notice? I did. I tired to be diplomatic.
7/n: An almost idea. It's not hard to see when a project is half-baked. Like, “I can probably whip something up...” MacGyver whipped up a lot of things w/few resources in no time, but research wasn’t one of them. Limited time = smaller project. Small isn’t bad. Half-baked is bad.
8/n: Most of these issues lead to confusion, then a sigh through grinding teeth with Reviewer 3 style comments back about your project. But the good news is they're all easily fixed! Now, on to the things I liked!
9/n: Clarity. As a writer of plenty of bad writing (abstracts, papers, fiction, songs poetry), I know bad (and good) writing. Clarity is King of good writing. Muddled vision = muddled writing. Give your writing to someone naïve so they can point out the confusing parts.
10/n: Focus. Keep the project’s objectives in sight and the narrative serving that objective. One abstract ended with a discussion that did not address their objective, which looks not-so-great since they’re separated by ~150 words. Tight, on-point writing -- be stil my heart!
11/n: Uniqueness. Adding an interesting detail to a standard project—like a patient survey for a clinical utility study—is refreshing. Obviously, the combinations of should be relevant to each other. Don’t just tack something shiny on—I’m a reviewer, not a raven.
12/n: Ambition. Projects w/an ambitious scope are always intriguing. But ambition is not a fat N with tiny p-values and CIs. I’d rather read five small project abstracts that are clearly presented than one messy and muddled Very Big Project.
13/n: Those are the main good/bad things! One important point is that the things I like (and I’m guessing other reviewers, editors, publishers, patients) are not specific things. They are not a statistical test or subject matter. These are foundational to any project.
14/n: In all my projects, I’ve found that if I can describe an idea in 2-3 sentences w/o clarifying f/u Qs (not Qs of scope/depth/etc), then I have clarity. After that, the project will do itself! Just kidding—it’s always a slog. But you can make the slog easier.
15/n: I hope that's helpful to current/future writers and researchers for genetic counseling or elsewhere. Others, please add other thoughts below! #GCchat #researchers
Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh.

Keep Current with Kyle W. Davis

Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!


This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!