Q: What does awaiting reviewer selection mean?

Detailed Question -

Hello, I submitted my paper to one of the high impact factor journals month ago. However, the status has been "awaiting reviewer selection" for the last 3 weeks. I don't know what this means and why it is taking so long. Although in my earlier submission of other papers in the same journal, in this time frame, my paper went into review process. Please explain why it is so?

1 Answer to this question

While it’s good to have an idea of the typical time from submission to publication, it’s important to understand that the processing times may vary even for a given journal, owing to several factors. As for your question about the “awaiting reviewer selection” status, please note that this status indicates that the journal editor is looking for peer reviewers for your paper, which means that your manuscript has cleared desk screening (congratulations!). One reason why this stage is taking long could be that the journal editor is having a tough time finding suitable peer reviewers. They may have reached out to potential reviewers and may be awaiting a response.

For now, you only need to wait. If you don’t see any change in the status for a few weeks, you could write to the journal, requesting for an update on the status of your submission.

To get a better understanding of journal statuses, you may wish to have a look at this handbook: A guide to understanding journal statuses

All the best for the next status/step!