Day 13: What micro-genre are you writing in, and what information does this give you about your manuscript?

This post is from the 30-day reflective writing series I made for Academic Writing Month (November 2018). For background on the series and links to all the videos, visit this page. To turn on subtitles: On a computer, hover at the bottom of the video window to make the row of icons appear; click on the “settings” icon (which looks like a cog), and select “Subtitles.” On a phone, the “subtitles” icon is in the bottom right corner of the screen.


  • We often think of academic genres in terms of broad categories like “book” and “article,” but in fact, there are countless academic micro-genres. I think of every journal and every university press book series as its own micro-genre.

  • Determining your micro-genre, or even just making a short list of articles/presses you want to send your manuscript to, can provide a lot of information about both formal and substantive aspects of your manuscript. Your decisions about length, structure, tone, framing, and more, can be informed by what you see in other texts within your micro-genre.

  • Keep in mind that just because other texts in your target micro-genre have a given feature, this doesn’t mean you necessarily have to adopt that feature. Genres are like families; the texts within a given (micro)genre share common features, but they aren’t identical to each other. You are ultimately the one who decides how to conform to or subvert the conventions of your genre and micro-genre. This reflection question is an opportunity to consider how you will do that.

Posted on November 12, 2018 and filed under #AcWriMo, reflection questions.