These days most of the journals have the online submission system for manuscripts. This has certainly made it easier for the authors to send their papers for the review process. In all good journals, once you have submitted your paper, there is an online tracking system which allows authors to follow the progress of their paper in the review process.
After having submitted the manuscript, the authors go through a journey of stress and anxiety. This is obvious and because of this they keep checking the status of their manuscript. When they get confused or are not able to comprehend the status, they feel all the more perplexed. It also happens at times that the status update does not change for a long time. This also causes them to worry and get tensed. It is not a good idea to contact the journals/editors of the journals very often. If you have not received any notification or update from them for a fortnight, it is acceptable to ask for feedback through a formal mail to the editor. Often, journals take anything between a fortnight to sometimes even a month to get back with their first response to the author.
With some basic doubts and questions answered, authors would be able to have some control on their anxiety as they would know the meaning of a few things they did not know before.
Though there is a lot of subjectivity in each of the journal or publication house but some generalised situations and status may work for all and give you clarity to help you comprehend what different things mean when you verify the status of your manuscript:
1. Manuscript Submitted: This status means that the manuscript has been submitted successfully by the author and there is no other formality pending from the end of the author. From here on it isn’t sent for editing immediately. First the formatting is checked and verified before sending on for further processing.
2. Editor Invited: This status does not apply to all the journals. But those who follow this status, mean that an editor has been assigned for the same and his approval and acceptance is awaited.
3.With Editor: According to this status, the control of your paper has been handed over to an editor and his feedback is awaited on the same. If it clears this stage, it is further sent on for peer review. However, if it gets rejected by the editor here only, it means that it does not live up to the standards of the journal and should not be further forwarded for peer review.
4.Reviewer Invited: Like Step 2, this again is an optional step and not all journals may incorporate this step. After the feedback from the editor, if it is positive then, this status update means that the manuscript has been sent to reviewers and their acceptance is awaited.
There are more status we can know of which we will discuss in the next blog.