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I wrote a paper, and I found several journals (from high to mid impact factor) that publish similar papers.

There's always a chance of rejection, so instead of submitting to journals one at a time (and wasting my time on adjusting the layout in LaTeX for each submission) I want to submit the same "generic nice layout" to several journals, see where it sticks, and after acceptance, work on LaTeX layout and implementing reviewers' remarks for the journal which accepted my paper.

Can I do it? Or is there a better way? How do people avoid re-editing their paper if journal A tells them to submit in journal B instead?

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    In general you do not need to follow a journals LaTEX layout rules at submission. Just submit in some generic nice looking layout. Only after you paper is accepted, you should follow the layout rules of that journal.
    – quarague
    Jun 27 at 11:06
  • Another duplicate candidate: academia.stackexchange.com/questions/185693/… Jun 27 at 12:54

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It is generally considered improper to submit a paper to more than one journal at a time. Only one can publish it. The reasoning behind this is that you waste the time of reviewers if the paper shows up in their queue. Don't try to game the system in this way.

You need to choose an "appropriate" journal for your paper. If this is your first or an early paper that is difficult, of course, but you might seek advice from a colleague or professor as to which to send the paper to. It takes a while, but if the paper is at all appropriate you will get some valuable feedback on the work.

If you submit multiple places it will likely be found out. Reviewers review for more than one journal. Editors of different journals know one another.

You don't want editors to refuse future papers because you have acted inappropriately in the past. The system may be inefficient in terms of quantity, but it seeks quality. Follow the rules.

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    I think "improper" might not even be a strong enough word for duplicate submissions.
    – mlk
    Jun 27 at 10:15
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    Thank you for this valuable answer! But still, even when submitting one-by-one in case of rejections... do I really have to play with LaTeX each time? It is the part of work I hate the most. Or can I just submit in whatever format, and then make it pretty after being greenlighted by everyone?
    – user46147
    Jun 27 at 10:59
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    Journals normally say what formats they will accept for initial submission. Papers are very rarely published exactly as submitted so too much effort spent on formatting is likely wasted.
    – Buffy
    Jun 27 at 11:10
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    @user46147 most often, journal will accept submissions either in word or latex, and do the final typesetting themselves. So don't worry t omuch about it. Jun 27 at 13:04

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