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annae

Silence after submission

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Hi, I recently submitted my first solo article to a journal and upon receipt was told that I would hear back after five weeks. I contacted them around this time and it's now been seven weeks and I have not heard back. Is this normal to not hear anything even after further inquiry? How long should I wait before submitting elsewhere? 

Thanks!

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Sadly, this is completely normal. Sometimes it is much harder than anticipated to find peer reviewers and so it just takes longer. It is not unheard of for reviews to take three to four months. I would email them again to ask when you may expect to hear something. Under no circumstances should you submit somewhere else without withdrawing your manuscript from this journal first. 

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This is normal; don't submit to another journal without hearing back from this journal one way or the other. At this point, withdrawing without getting feedback would be in poor taste. If you decide to give up on this journal, make sure you withdraw first and get someone to acknowledge you've done so. Never have the same paper submitted to more than one venue at a time. You could follow up again soon (once every two weeks sounds reasonable). Talk to your advisor about what to expect in terms of turnover times. 

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As an editorial assistant for a scholarly journal, I can confirm that this is indeed sadly normal. I can't tell you how many email reminders I have to send reviewers to remind them to read the #$%* paper and send me their review. It usually has nothing to do with the quality of the submission and everything to do with the fact that volunteering to review a submitted article ends up  at the bottom of the priority list for many (though not all) faculty members. If you had another journal in mind that could give you a quicker turn around time, you could always email Journal # 1 and (politely) tell them that you need to hear one way or the other by X Date. Then if that dates rolls around and still nothing, then you can email them to withdraw your paper and send to Journal #2 (though unless you know it will be faster you're probably just signing up for more of a protracted wait). If you do choose to withdraw, it's all about how you phrase the email...

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I may do this. It's definitely frustrating. I finally heard back that they were able to get one review but were waiting on another. It's been seven months now!

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On 7/12/2018 at 11:41 AM, annae said:

I may do this. It's definitely frustrating. I finally heard back that they were able to get one review but were waiting on another. It's been seven months now!

Omg. Seven months. Something similar happened to me with a paper I was a co-author on. Then it of course got rejected. Now it will probably be another seven months until they read through the revised version...by that time I will have graduated. I don't understand how anyone gets anything published in undergrad. 

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