Conference Submission Notes


These are brief writeups of the journey that some of my papers took to publication. Some were accepted to become published papers right away, others have evolved over time and eventually been accepted as papers. I’m writing this with a few goals: 1) in the hopes of celebrating the submission (since that’s the only part of the publication process I have control over) and 2) demystifying the publication cycle (and especially “failure”) for others. This writeup was inspired by many others, including Jeff Huang, who has presented a similar collection of ‘paper journeys’, Leslie Lamport, and Matt Keeter.

To see a list of all submissions (including work that hasn’t yet been published), visit.

Click on a submission (or a submission tag) to see all the other related drafts.

Friendscope Theatre Creative Strategies
Creative and Motivational Strategies Used by Expert Creative Practitioners
Molly Jane Nicholas, Sarah Sterman, Eric Paulos
I may have finally figured out what it is I'm trying to say. It also turns out that what I'm trying to say is something that's interesting to the folks at CnC, so I have fairly high hopes for this one. UPDATE - accepted AND won a Best Paper award!! This is absolutely the best version of this paper that has existed, and sending it to the right conference really matters.

Final Result: CnC'22 | PDF
Best Paper Award
process
Creative Strategies and Heuristics in Creative Professionals

I honestly knew in my heart that CSCW wasn't the right place for this paper, but submitted it anyway knowing it would probably get rejected. However, we got super lucky with the reviewers and one gave us absolutely incredible, thoughtful, detailed feedback. The reviewer feedback from this draft absolutely directly resulted in the last version being so good.

Final Result: CSCW'22 | PDF

process
Friendscope; Shared Experiences on Camera Glasses

We re-wrote the Intro each time, trying to make things more clear. This was the best version for sure. We also got a bunch of excellent reviewer feedback, which definitely improved this paper.

Final Result: CSCW'22 | PDF

friendscope
Towards Creative Version Control

The reviewers asked us to do additional interviews, which we did. It was a great suggestion - those interviews really helped clarify our claims.

Final Result: CSCW'21 | PDF

process
Friendscope; Shared Experiences on Camera Glasses

Reworked our rejected CHI 2021 submission. It makes more sense for this conference anyway! REJECTED. The feedback was helpful, but I'll probably never submit to IMWUT again. I disliked everything about this process.

Final Result: IMWUT'21 | PDF

friendscope
Expanding the Design Space of Technology-Mediated Theatre Experiences paper.

My first first-author paper. I'm so so proud of this project, and super excited about how this work came together. It was honestly a disaster at first. About two weeks after the show closed, I moved down to Santa Monica where my laptop (with all of the user data from the audience interviews/surveys/etc) was stolen. Then, a year later (March 2020) I decided to work with another theatre group to recreate the project....3 days later everything shut down for COVID-19. It took me another 6 months to slowly iterate on a draft about the design process, which eventually became this paper.

Final Result: DIS'21 | PDF

theatre
Towards Creative Version Control

Significantly reworked versions of the rejected CHI'21 paper (submission x), now split into two papers. We were consistently getting feedback that the story was too messy but we had so much cool stuff to talk about so we wrote two full papers each with an entirely separate focus. R4 - 2.5, R3 - 2.5, R1 - 4, R2 - 2.

Final Result: DIS'21 | PDF

process
Creative Heuristics in the Wild

Significantly reworked versions of the rejected CHI'21 paper (submission x), now split into two papers. We were consistently getting feedback that the story was too messy but we had so much cool stuff to talk about so we wrote two full papers each with an entirely separate focus. R4 - 2, R3 - 1.5, R1 - 3, R2 - 2.5.

Final Result: DIS'21 | PDF

process
“It’s not garbage if I can evolve on it”; The Shifting Purposes, Goals, and Re-Uses of Artifacts in Diverse Creative Practices

Significantly reworked draft of submission 10 that had been rejected from DIS'20. We completely changed the structure and re-wrote it three times in the week leading up to the deadline. We were SO proud of it and hoped the reviewers would love it as much as we did! Spoiler - they did not. MetaReviewer R4 - 2.5; R1 (2AC) - 3; R5 - 2.5; R2 - 3; R3 - 2. We did get this encouraging note though - "This paper was discussed extensively during the PC meeting and the ultimately had a 3rd AC added to the review." It feels nice to know your paper was under discussion.

Final Result: CHI'21 | PDF

process
Friendscope; Shared Experiences on Camera Glasses

Rework of submission 11 to IMWUT. MetaReviewer (1AC) - 2.5; Reviewer 1 (2AC) - 3; Reviewer 2 - 3; Reviewer 3 - 2. We're taking it as a hopeful sign for the future that the 2AC gave us a 3... No luck this time but we did make a bunch of great changes.

Final Result: CHI'21 | PDF

friendscope
Friendscope; Shared Experiences on Camera Glasses

Desk-rejected for incorrect format (they had the wrong insturctions on the website, but wouldn't budge on the rejection decision).

Final Result: IMWUT'20 | PDF

friendscope
Investment vs Catalyst; A Design Ethnography of Documentation in Creative Practices

We LOVED this project and I think our love blinded us to the faults in our draft. Looking over the draft now, it's clear we didn't know what story we wanted to tell, and just dumped a bunch of semi-organized user quotes on the readers. Rejected!

Final Result: DIS'20 | PDF

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© 2022 / Molly Jane Nicholas / email