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If the editorial manager wants a list of changes during the revision process, is it normal to add another file (what should this be called? Should it be a highlight or the name of the file is not important as they will eventually read through all files?) or where should I address my changes (which are pretty much big as the comment from the reviewer suggests to find a better way to address it - for which I can improve a result a little bit, too)?

Am I understanding this process right? Or is it needed to address the changes in the other ways?

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    There should be specific instructions from the editor/journal. If the instructions are not specific then you can either do what you want (not recommended) or ask the editor/journal for clarifications (recommended). Nov 22, 2022 at 15:24
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    I don't want to offend anyone, and as I haven't seen the revision form yet I can't tell if it's possible to add more than 1 file. Even if the name is not so important, I know it's appropriate to use a good name such as comment_response.txt Nov 22, 2022 at 15:24
  • You're not offending anyone by asking for clarifying details if someone asked you to follow a process that isn't spelled out. It's being professional! Nov 23, 2022 at 15:19

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I normally indicate the changed passages in red in the updated article text. In addition, I copy-paste all reviewer comments into a separate, new document (titled reply to reviewer comments or similar), and add a short reply to all comments explaining what I changed and why.

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  • So you highlighted the changes in the original paper in red? I'm not sure if that's okay to do, but I don't want to do anythin in the article text (other than its content). However, as you point out, I think it's okay to attach another file like the previous answer in the recise process. Nov 22, 2022 at 15:21
  • Yes, I highlited the changes in the original paper. I had never any complaints (and had the same method used in several papers that I did the peer review myself). It should not be a problem, as changing text color back to black is not an issue.
    – Sursula
    Nov 22, 2022 at 15:23
  • Oh, okay thank you. Nov 22, 2022 at 15:26
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In my experience, a standard approach is to write a resubmission/response/referee response/rebuttal letter. The exact name of the file isn't particularly important, but making it descriptive is always a good idea. It's quite typical for these letters to start with (sometimes optional) comments for the editor, followed by an itemized summary/list of changes, and then responses to referee comments. Normally* I copy-paste the full referee reports into the letter (with distinct text formatting), and address the referees' points one by one where they appear. So if one reviewer suggestion is to improve something you would address this under said comment, and briefly add a mention to the summary of changes.

*If there is a length restriction on the response letter it makes sense to only include the salient parts.

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  • I haven't seen yet the online resubmission form, so I don't know if we can upload more than 1 file and if we can select a group of it (as the online guidline said to attach this with that). Nov 22, 2022 at 15:19
  • @W.Wongcharoenbhorn it is highly likely that you can.
    – Anyon
    Nov 22, 2022 at 15:32
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    @W.Wongcharoenbhorn If you can only upload one file (which I doubt), you can always put the replies to the reviewers comments at the very end of the original article.
    – Sursula
    Nov 22, 2022 at 15:54
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Some journals make it possible to upload a manuscript with changes tracked as well as the "clean" updated version. Sursula's suggestion is similar - if anything, text color is something you care about with galley proofs in hand, but not as much during revisions. It is definitely something that can be fixed at later stages. This approach is a little more tricky for manuscripts prepared in LaTeX.

If the above is not feasible, one might write something to the effect of "clarifications were added (the penultimate paragraph in the Discussion section in the updated version)" or "We have added the values for x and z (line 271 in the revised version)" in the point-by-point rebuttals.

If everything else fails, you can always e-mail the editorial office with the additional version of your manuscript with the changes clearly marked. But most likely, there will be some provisions for it in the online resubmission form.

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