RipRap – Guide for Authors

Your organisation and work is going to be featured in RipRapRipRap is a newsletter that began in 1998 and was originally produced by Land & Water Australia. With the abolition of Land & Water Australia, RipRap stopped being produced, but at the end of 2012 we were able to raise enough money to get the publication going again with an edition on ‘Bringing Back Native Fish’. We have since released another four editions entitled ‘Restoring Rivers and Wetlands to Life’ , ‘Kati Thanda – Lake Eyre’ , ‘Rivers of Carbon-Rivers of Life’ , ‘Australia’s Northern Rivers and Estuaries‘ and ‘Habitat makes Fish Happen’.   Our next edition will be released in August  2017 with an environmental water theme – we still working out a name for the edition so ideas welcome.

RipRap focuses on translating science and practice into story, as we know this engages people and makes them want to read more. Overall, it is a friendly publication that presents science in a way that makes it relevant and meaningful for people without using overly technical language. A recent version of RipRap might be worth looking at so you can see our language, style and approach. There are previews of all the editions that you can read through, or you might like to download the pdf or purchase a copy of past editions to see the style we use.  For the upcoming edition, the most relevant RipRap is ‘Restoring Rivers and Wetlands to Life’ which we did a few years ago now and was an environmental watering focused edition.

RipRap is produced in full colour, with beautiful images (a picture tells a thousand words). It is provided in hard copy and this edition will also be a free downloadable pdf. We distribute RipRap through the ARRC shop, but most sponsors also order several copies to send out through their networks. If you have people you would like to distribute RipRap to, we can organise a box to be sent to you (charges apply).

Your Article

We need an article from you that will fill 1-2 pages.  This translates to 900 words with at least three images, graphs, photos etc. to really bring it to life. You can also link readers to supporting material so they can find out more. In essence people want to know:

  • Why the work/project is important,
  • What is being done
  • What are the key findings/activities
  • What are the Management Implications / Opportunities / Challenges
  • Where can people go for more information which may be through the website, booklets, journals, demonstration sites etc
  • Author, organisation, email contact

spineYou might like to use the ‘story spine’ to help you put your article together. It provides you with a structure to organise your story.  Use the spine to break up your paragraphs and link your ideas.  You don’t need to use the lead in phrases, they are there to help you think about how you want to build the reader’s interest and keep them engaged in what you have to say.  I find the story spine a really useful way to get my thoughts in order.  I also like the stories you write to have a personal touch, so please relate the story to yourself and your work, the human connection to what your are talking about is what get people interested in what you have to say.

  • Way back when…
  • Everyday…
  • But one day…
  • Because of that…
  • Because of that…
  • Because of that…
  • Until finally…
  • Ever since then…
  • And the moral of the story is…

Images are really important so choose ones that are in high resolution, at least 1.5mb. We also need to know that permission to use the photo has been granted, along with captions and photographer credits for each image.

Once you have written your article you can upload it to the RipRap 40 ‘Box’ that I will invite you to use via email. Please upload each image separately, and in your word document provide a note about where you want the image placed, the caption for the image and the photographer (or citation if it is a graph).

Contributions are due by the 20th of May 2016. I will edit your contribution and send it back to you for approval. It will then go into the design and layout process and you will have a final opportunity to approve it before it goes into the final print version. This process generally takes about 6 weeks.

I am here to help so please call me or send me an email if anything is unclear.

Siwan – enquiries@arrc.com.au