I submitted my short manuscript four months ago to a math journal. I sent a tracking email about the status of my paper and I was informed that the editor has a problem with finding appropriate reviewer and asked me to send him the name of potential reviewers. Can I withdraw my paper, because it seems to me it takes a very long time and I need it too much to publish soon.

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    Of course you can withdraw your paper. You can do so at any time and for whatever reason you like.
    – user109454
    Sep 1, 2019 at 3:31
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    Why not send a list of reviewers? Does your supervisor or colleagues have any ideas or suggestions? If they know of fast reviewers, it might be a better thing to stick it out with them
    – Poidah
    Sep 1, 2019 at 4:15
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    Unless you sent it to a journal in the wrong field, any other journal in the same field is likely to have similar problems with referees. Sep 1, 2019 at 18:03

1 Answer 1


You can withdraw your paper at any stage before it's published, although the longer you wait the more annoyed the journal might get (you are using up their reviewer resources after all). After it's published, you'll have to retract as opposed to withdraw it.

  • Doesn't sound like there are any reviewers as yet according to the editor. Unless the editor has sent it to one and is struggling to find another reviewer. I just think changing ship now would end up being far lower and there is a risk of jumping ship to a predatory journal in the rush.
    – Poidah
    Sep 1, 2019 at 4:35
  • Sure, but 1) "should I change ships" wasn't what was asked, 2) there's no guarantee that changing ship will result in a faster review since the new journal can also have trouble finding reviewers, and 3) it's easy to avoid predatory journals - just submit to a subscription journal that doesn't have APCs.
    – Allure
    Sep 1, 2019 at 4:39
  • Good point. Didn't know about APCs (article processing charge). For me is the spam and hassles that happen once your email is out there... It is very frustrating
    – Poidah
    Sep 1, 2019 at 4:40
  • I must add this note that I was informed that the editor in chief is himself handling the process and he told me it is not fit with editors's field!
    – user40491
    Sep 1, 2019 at 4:50
  • The fact that the editor in chief is asking for help is a good sign. If you can find supportive reviewers, the journal will likely streamline things as much for you as possible I suspect.
    – Poidah
    Sep 1, 2019 at 6:19

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