Submit an Article

Like to submit an article to Ancestor?

We welcome the submission of articles on family history topics for possible publication. The editors reserve the right to edit or abridge articles to meet space constraints and editorial considerations. Submissions should be the work of the author submitting the article and should not have been published elsewhere unless agreed. All material should be submitted in electronic format to

Please submit text as Microsoft™ Word doc or docx files (printed papers will not be considered for publication). Images should not be embedded in the text file. Provide captions for each image in the text file. Articles should not exceed 3000 words in length. Shorter articles with images to illustrate the article are preferred.


Regular contributors must submit material by 1 January, 1 April, 1 July and 1 October for publication in the March, June, September and December issues respectively.
However articles for consideration for publication are received at any time. Space constraints mean that edited articles have to sometimes be held over until a later issue.

There are three common issues that many authors struggle with. These are:

Referencing End Notes

The rationale behind referencing is to enable readers to understand your source of information and make their own assessment of it. Each reference should show where you obtained the information provided in your article. Please use endnotes rather than footnotes and use Arabic numerals (1,2,3, etc.) rather than Roman numerals to identify each endnote. Too often authors leave out referencing, which means editors and readers simply do not know whether or not you made it all up. On the other hand, some authors give references to every item and overload their article with a very long list of endnotes. We are not an academic journal so we don't need that either. If many of your references are simply registry office certificates of births, deaths or marriages - its good enough to simply say: Victoria Registry of BDM and similar.

The Submission of Images

Many authors embed an image into their text. Please do not do this, but instead send your images in separate jpg or tif files as attachments. Please send as high resolution files (>300dpi). Remember, you must have permission of the owner of the image and the copyright holder (where that applies). Images on the internet may not be out of copyright, and are unlikely to be large enough for print.

To make it clear what each image is, give it a number and title. In the text of your article, indicate, as in the following example, where you would prefer the image to appear:

CAPTION: Image 1 - The grave of Mary Smith, courtesy of Joe Blow

If you are a user of the pictures collection of the State Library of Victoria (or any other picture source), then acknowledge your use of that collection as follows:
CAPTION: Image 1: The grave of Mary Smith, artist Jack Richards, State Library of Victoria, Pictures Collection, Acc. No. H1234/45

Understanding our use of Track Changes and Comments in Microsoft Word™

One of the most useful features of Microsoft Word for authors and editors is called Track Changes. It is designed to assist authors when collaborating with other authors and editors. It allows editors an efficient way of making suggested alterations and corrections to an article. It enables the author to follow the alterations made and to decide whether to accept each one.

As editors, we will normally return your article with our editing shown in Track Changes in red font. You can then consider the suggested changes.

Track Changes is accessed from the top tool bar under 'Tools' or 'Review' depending on the version of Microsoft Word that you are using. The drop down menu then lists 'Track Changes'. When you receive a document from an editor, follow the options under 'Track Changes' and then you can decide whether or not to accept or reject each of the changes suggested.
We suggest the easiest way to get used to it, is to try it out for yourself on a document. It's pretty simple.

We may also add a comment, for example asking for clarification or suggesting a different word. The Comments menu is also accessed with PCs under 'Review', and with Apple computers from the menu bar.

A few other points to remember:

In preparing your article, please see our How to do End Referencing Citations  and also Guidelines for Authors

Finally, your article is your work. You have responsibility for its content and you are the one who gets the accolades or the criticism. We, as editors, try to ensure the magazine maintains a good standard, has a consistent style and is of high readability and of interest to our readership. We are happy to help you achieve a good result. You don't have to agree with everything we suggest. Good writing!

If you have further questions, email:

Download as pdf to print