Q: Why has the status remained "awaiting reviewer selection" even 5 months after resubmission?

Detailed Question -

I have made a major revision after receiving one very positive feedback and one very negative feedback for my manuscript. Then I revised and resubmitted the paper. It is almost 5 months since resubmission, but the status has remained “Awaiting Reviewer Selection” since then. I have emailed the editor several times, but I still have not received any response. Has anyone had this experience?  Please tell me what I should do. Thanks!

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Answer:

As your manuscript has undergone some major revisions, it will have to be sent for another round of peer review. The journal editor will send the revised manuscript to reviewers to get their feedback on it. In case of revisions, the manuscript is mostly sent to the same reviewers who reviewed the manuscript for the first time. But in some cases the editor may have to find new reviewers if the previous reviewers are busy with other commitments. The status is shown as “awaiting reviewer selection” apparently because the editor is still waiting for reviewers to accept the invitation to review. Once the adequate number of reviewers have accepted the invitation, the status should change to “under review.”

However, reviewer selection happens much faster in case of revised manuscripts as they are mostly assigned to the previous reviewers themselves. Since it has been five months already and the journal editor has not responded to your queries so far, you should find out if the journal has any other point of contact. You can write to the alternate contact person and politely ask them to share details about the progress of your manuscript.

If you still don’t receive any response/clarity about your manuscript’s status, as a last resort, you can consider withdrawing your manuscript. Since you’ve already spent so much time for this submission, it is not desirable to withdraw it now. So make sure you have tried all your other options first and consider this only if nothing else works. If you choose to withdraw your manuscript, make sure you receive a confirmation of withdrawal from the journal before you submit your manuscript to another journal.

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