British Go Journal Contributions

Contributions are invited for the British Go Journal on any topic related to Go. Submissions should be mailed to: journal@britgo.org

We welcome submissions from anyone from beginner to professional. Please remember that you do not have to be an expert even to write a technical article. Articles on technical matters written from the perspective of a double digit kyu are interesting to at least as many people as articles written by a professional. Many of the best articles are written by beginners and improving players about recent insights which have made them stronger, or about some common mistakes they have seen when teaching weaker players. Articles can be about anything related to Go; some possible ideas are:

  • Technical articles: a concept you have recently discovered, common mistakes you have seen, a joseki you have just learned, "revelations" that cause a leap in strength.
  • Game reviews: Reviews of games between double figure kyus are as valuable as reviews of high dan games, and all are welcome.
  • News reports: reports of club events, visits, inter-club matches, club tournaments.
  • Travelogues: reports of experiences playing Go abroad, whether at a club or tournament.
  • Book reviews: new books, or older books you have recently read. Software reviews are also welcome. Further guidelines for reviews are here.

Articles should generally be between 1-3 pages. As a guideline, one journal page is around 300 words. The copy date for each journal is generally around two months after the publication of the previous issue. The deadline for the next issue can always be found on the home page.

Photographs for use with news articles and for the front and inside covers are also particularly welcome.

For all contributors: The Editor will always send you a draft copy of the journal at its current state, usually within a few days of submission

Formatting

Articles should be sent as plain text files, with as little formatting as possible, since any formatting will be discarded while preparing the article for publication. If you use Word, for example, save the article as a Text File (.txt).

Please take care with special characters such as quotation marks, apostrophes and dashes. It is preferable to use '--' (a double dash) rather than a single dash. It is also helpful to write "\pound" rather than a £ sign and "\euro" rather than a Euro symbol, otherwise these can vanish unless spotted by proof readers.

If you have photographs or diagrams to be included with your article, these should be sent in either .jpg or .eps format. Scans should be at least 300dpi, although 600dpi is preferred. Only electronic submissions will be accepted.

A convenient way to prepare diagrams is with GoWrite. GoWrite allows you to edit a board position, then export a graphic representation of the board (or a selected portion of the board). When exporting, click "Export Graphic Settings" and choose "Encapsulated PostScript" as the format. This will save diagrams in the preferred .eps format.

It is even better if articles can be sent as LaTeX source ready for publication (see typesetting guidelines) but this is by no means a requirement. Volunteers to help with typesetting, who are familiar with LaTeX, are always welcome; please contact the journal committee chairman if you are able to help.

Game Reviews

Game reviews can be submitted in .sgf format. It is, however, a lot of work to convert game records into a form suitable for publication so there are several things you can do to make this job easier for the typesetter.

  • It is helpful if the review begins with some context for the game, e.g. where it was played, whether a tournament game or friendly game, some background on the players.
  • When referring to specific moves in the review, use, e.g. b[9] and w[10] to refer to black move 9 and white move 10 respectively. This is easier to translate automatically into the appropriate form for typesetting
  • GoWrite can be used to convert a .sgf into an initial version of the review, including diagrams and variations, which you can use to get some idea of how the final version will look. GoWrite outputs these reviews as .html, which you can open in a web browser.

Conventions

Use proper capitalisation and never type a word in all capitals.

Double quotation marks should be used only to indicate speech. Use single quotes to indicate textual quotations, unusual terms, names of publications and in any other situation where some form of emphasis is required.

Go specific conventions

The word Go must have an initial capital. The same applies to the name of any other game.

The words Black and White must be capitalised according to whether the word is used as a noun or an adjective. Thus: "After Black 23, the white group is dead.". Sometimes this can be hard to resolve. If in doubt, refer to a well produced book - such as the Ishida Joseki Dictionary - to see how it should be done.

Japanese terms such as sente or joseki will not normally be emphasised as they are common currency in the Go player's language. Unusual terms or those being introduced, for example in an article aimed at beginners, should be set within single quotes eg 'Katte Yomi'.

'Nihon Ki-in' should be written with a hyphen (Ki-in rather than Kiin).

Grades are given as 'k', 'd' or 'p', to indicate kyu or dan or professional, e.g. 15k, 2d, 9p.

Lists of players should be separated by semi-colons, with a comma before the final 'and', e.g.:

On 4 wins were Arthur Dent, 3k; Ford Prefect, 4k; Zaphod Beeblebrox, 5k, and Dirk Gently, 6k.

Typesetting guidelines

After several years use, having first been piloted by Jenny Radcliffe, the use of LaTeX to typeset the journal became settled by 2008. This section assumes familiarity with LaTeX.

In order to reduce the workload falling on the Editor, all contributors are encouraged to submit articles, particularly technical ones, already marked up, tested, and proofread by a friend. A LaTeX class file, bgj.cls which sets the journal style is available. Don't panic: this stuff is easy and free public domain.

There is an empty article template available, which you can use as a starting point. There is also a Sample file, and how it looks when typeset.

BGJ specific macros

The bgj.cls file includes a growing collection of macros to assist with the conventions defined here, and sets some standard layout and typesetting rules. These are:

  • \bgjarticle{Title}{Author}{email}, which should be placed at the beginning of each article.
  • \webfont{url}, which should be used for web links and email addresses.
  • \NK and \kiin, which stand for "Nihon ki-in" and "ki-in" respectively, to ensure the names are used consistently.
  • \kyu{30}, \dan{4}, \pro{8} will render as the conventions indicate for grades: 30k, 4d and 8p respectively.

Go positions

Diagrams can be typeset either using the igo package, or using GoWrite. Igo allows go positions to be typeset directly in the LaTeX source, such as the following:

\black{q2,q3,o3,p4,o6,q7,q8,q9,q10,p11,o11,p5,q6}
\white{r2,r3,q4,q5,r6,r7,r8,r9,r10,q11,r12,p12}
\gobansymbol{m9}{A}
\begin{center}
\shortstack{\showgoban\\Figure 1\\Thickness}
\end{center}

For more complex positions, GoWrite allows you to enter positions directly, and export as .eps.

Resources

Several resources are available on the internet to help with typesetting, image manipulation, proof reading and diagram editing:

When writing a Book Review, Personal Profile, or an Obituary - look in the more recent British Go Journals, for examples that have passed the rigorous Proof-Reading cycle for style, content and order. Those over a year old can be found here.



Last updated Fri Dec 21 2012. If you have any comments, please email the webmaster on web-master AT britgo DOT org.