July 24, 1987

An Insider's Guide for Medical Authors and Editors

Author Affiliations

Lifetime Medical Television Los Angeles

Lifetime Medical Television Los Angeles


by Peter Morgan (Professional Editing and Publishing Series), 111 pp, $14.95, Philadelphia, ISI Press, 1986.

JAMA. 1987;258(4):547. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03400040145044

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For a thin paperback with only about 100 pages of text, this little volume packs a wallop. It delivers on the promise of its title by providing readers with authoritative and helpful information from one of the Scientific Editors of the Canadian Medical Association Journal about the medical publication process. The author's term "companion" for the book is fitting. It is a disorganized romp through the intellectual issues of contemporary medical editing and writing.

It succeeds best when the author exercises his considerable creative talents. Brief, illustrative vignettes that resemble mini—morality plays bring many otherwise boring technical editorial issues to life. They feature such droll characters as the elitist, hardnosed journal editor Ambrose Relso, MD, and the plodding resident, would-be author, and all-around schlemiel Norman Nojarg, MD. Interesting historical anecdotes presented in the book, such as the origin of symposia as drinking parties, put modern practices in an instructive light.