contributors to The Community Planner. The Community Planner
is meant to be an indepth, hands-on publication for citizens, community
activists, community leaders, and planning staff. As such, articles
should be clear, understandable across an audience with a broad range
of experience (from no experience to professional training), and detailed.
While planning terminology should not be avoided, definitions for professional
terms must be included either in the text of the article or, if a longer
explanation is necessary, in a sidebar. Take time to read an issue or
sample articles before sending an inquiry.
Length will vary depending on content, article type, and topic.
Types: Each issue of The Community Planner will include
hands-on, how to (step by step) articles, case studies (both good and
bad...what happens when it works; what happens when it does not), product
reviews, tools of the trade, and sidebar information.
Depth: The articles in The Community Planner should
have both depth and detail. The purpose of the journal is to provide
detailed, step-by-step instructions for planning processes, projects,
and tasks so that citizens, community leaders, and planners can pick
up an issue, follow the instructions, and successfully complete a single
task or larger project. These are not meant to be overview articles.
Step by Step Articles: Articles should focus both on how
a task, project, or process is specifically done, provide a comprehensive
step-by-step guide to what is involved and how each step should be handled,
and explain why specific steps are taken. Some articles may require
sidebar information. Sidebars provide background information, definitions,
and brief issue discussions.
of the Trade Articles: Articles should focus on how to use
a specific tool or computer program. For example, the first issue focused
on the the non-traditional use of spreadsheet programs.
Studies: Case studies are an indepth look at processes, projects,
or tasks, in a specific location, which either did or did not work.
It is as important to understand what went wrong as it is to understand
what went right. The case studies are designed to give readers a deeper
understanding and to provide on-the-ground examples of the process of
Reviews: Throughout the planning process, citizens, planners,
and consultants use different tools and materials, including computer
programs, special supplies, data sources, and resources. Product reviews
should be objective and balanced and should provide readers with both
the pros and the cons of the product. Product review articles are generally
fairly short (500 words or so).
are reviewed by the editorial staff. Unsolicited manuscripts are not
read, so please be sure to send a letter of inquiry prior to sending
article materials. Letters of inquiry should include the correspondent's
daytime phone number and email address. All submission should be in
electronic format (doc, pdf, xls, ppt, png, and jpg).
to the Editor are considered donated material and do not come under
the same review and editorial process. All Letters to the Editor must
be signed. The Community Planner does not publish anonymous
Please send a letter of inquiry or an email with a brief article proposal
The Community Planner
630 Depot Street NE
Christiansburg, VA 24073