My manuscript is actually a new theory, consisting of four chapters, 15,000 words, so it cannot be rewritten in the form of a journal. If I delete some of the content to fit the format of a journal, readers will not understand the ins and outs of my theory. What should I do? Can I publish it as a monograph? Does the monograph also have a scientific credit, and can be cited? Is it possible to publish a monograph without peer review?

ADD: See below comments. I really appreciate all of you! I will take your advice. I will divide my manuscript into four themes, and submit the most creative ideal first avoiding arguments.

I am not worried that some people say that I maybe a "crackpot" because my manuscript has no "imagination" but LOGIC and math. I am an independent researcher, who thinks outside the box.

I just want to make a contribute to science. But I have no idea how to make a connection for these four themes when my manuscripts under peer review process.

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    Do you have an advisor who can help you with these questions? Them seem specific to you and your academic field and are likely off topic for this site. Jul 8, 2019 at 20:33
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    What field? Looking at the Physical Review family of journals, several of them are happy with articles of 20,000 words or more. But, really, if you can't break things down into chunks and explain the pieces well, it is going to be a tough sell.
    – Jon Custer
    Jul 8, 2019 at 21:34
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    You really, really need to break things down into smaller pieces and start getting feedback from others on your ideas. Right now, your statements send up red flags of "potential crackpot." You may well have discovered something true and interesting, but until you start communicating with a larger community on its own terms that will be difficult to discern.
    – jakebeal
    Jul 8, 2019 at 22:50
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    Here's a test that might help: if you cannot write the nub of theory/contribution in what would be considered a standard abstract (250 words, I'm afraid) - there is a chance that you do not fully understand it yourself, or need a help from a kindly supervisor or perhaps a professional editor on how to pare it down. Mind, if you can do this (and your theory is, indeed totally novel), you might be on the verge of greatness. Good luck. Jul 9, 2019 at 7:26
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    Just to caution you, words like "my manuscript has no "imagination" but LOGIC and math. I am an independent researcher, who thinks outside the box." are similar to those used by cranks: they deny that their ideas could be wrong, and focus on their independence and unique thinking. If you haven't published before, you will likely struggle to do so without an academic advisor. People don't get PhDs just because the pay is awesome, they go through it to learn the process of research, which includes publishing, from senior researchers.
    – Bryan Krause
    Jul 9, 2019 at 23:33

5 Answers 5


I am sorry. The answer to your question is: rewrite it. If you wish to communicate your ideas you need to make it easy, not hard, for the reader. No-one is going to read 15,000 words to understand the ins and outs of your theory without some kind of motivation. What motivation are you going to provide: 'Trust me: you won't understand this unless you commit to reading 15,000 words'? Why would anyone bother?

Try to imagine explaining your theory to someone you have met on a social occasion. What is the theory about? Why is there some question arising in that field that you have put so much work into? What is the question? What is the answer?

If you get that far, you might be asked 'Why do think that is the answer?'.

If you can imagine that conversation then you will have created an abstract of your work. that might give you some clues as to how you might break down your work into manageable chunks for publication.

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    Yes. I am rewriting it.
    – Paul Yuan
    Jul 11, 2019 at 19:20

As in other answers, I think a large point is about persuasion: presumably your goal is to persuade other people to seriously consider what you've written... apart from "peer review" or "publication" in whatever sense.

That tends to mean that you cannot require people to read huge amounts to be convinced. The thing has to "have a hook" from the beginning, to get people to commit themselves to looking at the larger thing.

I distantly understand that things may be different in the humanities, but, even then, surely a persuasive opening gambit is a good thing?

So, in particular, as others have said, do not publish a monograph _with_a_vanity_press_. No one will take it seriously.

That is, if you are not already established as a professional, but you want your work to be taken seriously, you simply must jump over some hurdles. Some of those hurdles (details depending on your field) require fitting things into the standard boxes. If/when, as a novice, but also later, you say to people "oh, my work can't fit into the standard boxes" then you lose credibility. If you're a novice, you have no stockpile of credibility to "spend", so this is a very bad idea.

So, a very serious issue (apart from the necessity of talking to your advisor... or getting one if you don't have one currently) is establishing credibility... which probably means conforming to format ideas. Just do it. At this point in your life, don't tell people that you "simply can't" make your work fit into traditional molds, because they'll just think you're 99.99% likely to be a crackpot... (because, without knowing you, they will have heard such remarks from crackpots...)

  • Yes, I am rewriting my article. Give a "a hook" at first paragraph.
    – Paul Yuan
    Jul 11, 2019 at 19:23
  • Good! And good luck with it. :) Jul 11, 2019 at 19:23

Contrary to what other answers tell you, I'll say that 15.000 words may not be the problem. I have had a couple of 10.000 word papers accepted in journals that specialize in long papers about theoretical topics, where you are in fact encouraged to spell out the details. This is of course field dependent.

What worries me is that you say that your manuscript is too complicated to understand without all 15.000 words. No one will sit down and read it cover to cover. Try to have a colleague, a supervisor or really anyone experienced with the field to read through your manuscript and ask for helpful suggestions to extract important bits that can be understood without necessarily understanding all the background, and make that into a shorter paper, which refers to the long one for details.

  • I will delete partial of my article for shortening the length. I intend to publish the uncontested parts first. If I get it published, it will draw public attention. And then, I will submit the controversial parts. The publishing process takes months or a year. It is too slow. If I submit the detailed manuscript of the derivation, the peer review takes only one or two days.
    – Paul Yuan
    Jul 11, 2019 at 19:10
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    Note the following: - Your manuscript will most likely not draw any public attention by itself. You will have to present it at conferences. - Yes, the publication process will take time. Peer review of theoretical papers with many details easily takes months. - In no situation will review of your paper only take one or two days.
    – nabla
    Jul 14, 2019 at 19:28

Some journals accept longer articles or a series of articles. You, an especially your article, have to be very convincing for that to happen, but it can happen.

You could publish a manuscript. Depending on the discipline, that will be absolutely standard to highly unusual. In the latter case your book has to be extremely exceptional for it to have an impact.

Also stay away from vanity publishers. They ask you to pay for publishing your book, and obviously they will publish any c**p you want as long as you pay. People know that, and ignore anything published by those publishers. So that is worse than useless.

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    Thank you. I will be carefully to vanity publishers.
    – Paul Yuan
    Jul 11, 2019 at 19:19

People simply do not have time to read such long manuscripts from authors unknown in the field. The odds are overwhelmingly in favour of this being crackpot work. From the info provided by the OP, the odds are also overwhelmingly against this being published is a reasonable peer-reviewed journal: maybe it shouldn’t be but provenance matters to some degree and unknown authors, unless they are immediately (within 2-3 pages) clear in their writings, will be dismissed out of hand.

If the results are sound, the OP should first expose them to a professional mathematician, who can in turn contact specialists in the field if warranted. Finding someone willing to spare some time on this might be a challenge, but such a “sponsor” might at least push some levers to increase the credibility of the OP.

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    Yes, too many crack articles with no peer review on websites. I don't read them but only read text books and Wikipedia.
    – Paul Yuan
    Jul 11, 2019 at 19:17

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