The word monograph comes from the Greek language. Monos means unique and graphein writing. From this it becomes clear that in a monograph only one topic is treated. This has no influence on the number of authors. An example of a typical monograph is the work “Käthe Kollwitz with self-testimonies and pictorial documents” by author Catherine Kramer. This can deal with a situation, but also with a problem or a person. The decisive feature is that the chosen topic is analyzed from different angles.
Who writes a monograph?
Monographs are often written by a single author. But there are also works in which several authors were involved. However, there are restrictions here. If the authors collaborate on the book, the result may be called a monograph. However, if the authors divide the task among themselves so that the individual chapters, pages or sections originate from a single author, the talk is no longer of a monograph but of an anthology. It is also possible that the authors bring out the result as an essay collection. \
However, there can not always be a clear demarcation.
Also to be distinguished is the anthology. An anthology contains texts or chapters of several authors. An anthology can be a monograph. This is the case when the authors have revised the texts in cooperation and the book meets the scientific requirements.
How extensive is a monograph?
A monograph may be a single work or may include several volumes. It deals with a specialized topic that is exactly limited. There is no regulation or recommendation on the scope.
Building a monograph
The monograph contains an introduction, the main part, consisting of chapters and a degree. Quotes are marked according to scientific rules. The same applies to the sources.
Motivation for writing a monograph
Writing a monograph presents authors with a great challenge. It is not suitable for a first scientific work. This is conceivable following a scientific work. Since monographs have to have enough potential for citability, working requires sufficient time and perseverance. The availability of sources and contacts also plays an important role. In addition, it is recommended that inexperienced authors, experienced authors.
Find topic for the monograph
The monograph is one of the scientific papers which require a high level of specialized knowledge and the willingness to conduct thorough and exhaustive research. Therefore, strictly speaking, it is only suitable for authors who have already dealt very intensively with the chosen topic. It is not suitable as an introduction to gain recognition as an expert in a field.
Plan for creating a monograph
Writing a monograph begins with creating a plan of action. This includes the scheduling and a list of already known sources and contact persons. Subsequently, a first rough outline is created, with the help of which the objective becomes clear. Subsequently, the research begins with reading the sources and recording important statements. As with all scientific papers, the author has to be careful when quoting. Footnotes are a matter of course. The bibliography should therefore be meticulously completed from the beginning. After writing the chapters editing takes place. Afterwards, it is recommended to have the entire book read by a qualified person.
Monographs are published in non-fiction publishers. This works better through a literary agent, who is looking for the right publisher and negotiates the terms of the contract. Good literary agents are not easy to find. They are also often overloaded with exposés. Instead of sending the exposé for the monograph to the agent, it may make more sense to arrange an appointment. The right time is when the outline and the concept stand. The first fifty pages or chapters should also be finished. It is not recommended to wait until the complete book is finished, because it is not unlikely that the agent or publisher wants to give the book a different structure. This can make sense, especially against the background that they know the market as experts and can assess the prospects of success mostly realistically. This may also mean that the author (s) do not agree with the expectations or demands of the publisher. Here, the commissioned agent can assist in negotiations. Apart from that, of course, there is also the option of having the book printed on your own account and self-publishing. To warn is to publishers who demand money from the author. Serious literary agents and publishers generate their revenue from sales. This is one of the reasons why the monograph is well presented on the market.
Special income from the monograph
An important advantage of having a good monograph is that it gives the author a name as an expert. This predestines him for lectures on the person or theme from the monograph. It is a task of the literary agent to find the appropriate events and also lead the fee negotiations here. If the author is a good and interesting speaker, the monograph so often provides additional revenue for years.