The complete guide to improving your editorial review process

The complete guide to improving your editorial review process

4 minute read

The complete guide to improving your editorial review process

4 minute read

The complete guide to improving your editorial review process

Afoma Umesi

GatherContent Contributor, Writer
What do book critics, book bloggers, and journal editors have in common? Editorial reviews. Book critics, reviewers, and some bloggers write editorial reviews for books, while journal editors review academic or research manuscripts before accepting them for publication.

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Editorial reviews are priceless for newly published authors and academic writers looking to publish their work in academic journals. However, writing and publishing editorial reviews (or running one, in the case of academic journal editors) can be complicated if there’s no efficient workflow.

In this guide, we'll walk through the editorial review process, discuss why these reviews are necessary, and illustrate how to streamline the workflow for editorial reviews.

What is an editorial review?

Editorial reviews differ depending on your industry.

In the academic world, editorial reviews evaluate a submitted manuscript by an appointed academic editor.

The editor examines the submission to ascertain whether its subject matter and quality meet the journal’s standards and whether both fit within the scope of material typically covered by that journal.

For book publishing, editorial reviews are critical reviews of a book by recognized industry experts and professional reviewers—different from customer reviews.

These reviews are then published on various platforms, including as blurbs on the book cover, in acclaimed newspaper columns, and on book review sites.

Although these reviews are different, the basic idea is the same: to provide an expert evaluation of written work, which results in an opinion piece being written or a submission progressing to eventual publication.

Good to Know: Are you struggling to get organised, spot opportunities, be more user-focused, and bridge organisational silos? Download our Editorial Calendar Template today!

Editorial Review Benefits

Editorial reviews are highly impactful no matter the industry; they are more than a bureaucratic process. Here are three main benefits.

1. To provide valuable information

Editorial reviews involve an unbiased, expert third-party reviewing the content of a manuscript or published book. These reviews streamline the selection process for academic and research journals by weeding out unsuitable submissions.

As we’ll see later, the editorial review often leads to more reviews by other experts that can either lead to an accepted or rejected manuscript.

In the case of editorial book reviews, customers (such as school librarians for children’s books) may read editorial reviews to decide on purchasing a book.

These reviews often capture the essence of the story and help readers understand whether or not a book received critical acclaim.

Here’s an example from the editorial reviews section of the 2021 Newbery winning title, When You Trap a Tiger, as seen on the book’s Amazon page:

editorial review example - when you trap a tiger
An example from the editorial reviews section of the 2021 Newbery winning title, When You Trap a Tiger

2. To maintain a publication’s reputation

Many scientific journals only publish a fraction of the submitted manuscripts. The British science journal Nature only publishes about 8% of the 200 submissions received each week.

Editorial reviews help them maintain the quality of their published work. These reviews ensure that every submission published is:

  • Original; not published elsewhere
  • Within the scope of the journal’s interest and that of their readers
  • Scientifically relevant
  • Conclusive (in terms of research findings) and impactful

Providing high value is critical as not many journals are open access publications—up to 42% of scholarly articles are behind a paywall.

3. To create effective marketing

Book sales depend, to an extent, on positive editorial reviews. Authors who receive positive editorial reviews can use them for book marketing by:

  • Sharing them on social media
  • Adding a quote from the review as a blurb on the book cover or back cover
  • Including the reviews on promotional material like press releases
  • Sending quotes to bookstores, conferences, and other bookselling opportunities

Reviews help get the word out about books, especially for self-published authors who may not have as much book promotion budget as traditionally published ones.

When to Do Editorial Reviews

The timing of editorial reviews depends on the type.

Journal editorial reviews happen after submission and before peer reviews. Books can receive editorial reviews shortly before publication or after publication.

Good to Know: With GatherContent you can free up your editorial team to focus on content creation, not operational admin!

Editorial Reviews for Journal Publications

When a journal receives a manuscript for potential publication, they first run pre-checks. After the pre-check, the manuscript is sent to an academic editor with subject matter expertise. This editor—usually part of the journal’s editorial board—performs the editorial review.

They will evaluate the manuscript’s content to match the journal’s guidelines and decide whether it’s up to standard. After the review, the editor can choose to:

  1. Reject the submission
  2. Accept the submission and send it off to a peer review
  3. Request further edits, after which the piece will need to be resubmitted

The peer-review process is performed by a small group of experts in the same industry as the submission's authors. They’ll review the research and evaluate the relevance of the subject matter. Peer reviewers will then leave notes, edits, or suggestions in the manuscript and revert to the editor.

Next, the editor will decide, based on feedback from the peer review, whether to seek more peer reviews, reject the manuscript, ask for more edits, or accept the piece as suitable to publish. Once approved, the manuscript will undergo copyedits for grammar and readability, then proofreading and formatting before publishing.

Editorial Reviews for Books

For books, authors can send advance copies of their manuscripts to review sites and professional reviewers before publication. These experts can publish their reviews before the book is released or shortly after.

The Editorial Review Process with GatherContent

Whether you’re writing an editorial book review or reviewing a manuscript submission for a journal, an effective, collaborative editorial review workflow will simplify your task.

gathercontent collaboration editorial review screenshot
GatherContent supports highly collaborative editorial reviews

GatherContent is a content workflow platform designed to help teams who collaborate on content. If you work with a journal publication, you know how confusing the workflow can get as some manuscripts pass from editor to authors to peers and back again to authors.

With GatherContent, you can keep everyone up-to-date on your content’s journey by:

  • Providing a cloud-based content hub for centralized work
  • Developing custom content templates to match your publication’s needs
  • Adding built-in content guidelines so that approved work is consistent
  • Assigning tasks to collaborators with due dates
  • Working simultaneously on documents
  • Getting feedback from relevant team members
Good to Know: Stop wondering who has the manuscript and when it’s your turn to step in when you start using GatherContent. Start your free trial today.

Editorial reviews are priceless for newly published authors and academic writers looking to publish their work in academic journals. However, writing and publishing editorial reviews (or running one, in the case of academic journal editors) can be complicated if there’s no efficient workflow.

In this guide, we'll walk through the editorial review process, discuss why these reviews are necessary, and illustrate how to streamline the workflow for editorial reviews.

What is an editorial review?

Editorial reviews differ depending on your industry.

In the academic world, editorial reviews evaluate a submitted manuscript by an appointed academic editor.

The editor examines the submission to ascertain whether its subject matter and quality meet the journal’s standards and whether both fit within the scope of material typically covered by that journal.

For book publishing, editorial reviews are critical reviews of a book by recognized industry experts and professional reviewers—different from customer reviews.

These reviews are then published on various platforms, including as blurbs on the book cover, in acclaimed newspaper columns, and on book review sites.

Although these reviews are different, the basic idea is the same: to provide an expert evaluation of written work, which results in an opinion piece being written or a submission progressing to eventual publication.

Good to Know: Are you struggling to get organised, spot opportunities, be more user-focused, and bridge organisational silos? Download our Editorial Calendar Template today!

Editorial Review Benefits

Editorial reviews are highly impactful no matter the industry; they are more than a bureaucratic process. Here are three main benefits.

1. To provide valuable information

Editorial reviews involve an unbiased, expert third-party reviewing the content of a manuscript or published book. These reviews streamline the selection process for academic and research journals by weeding out unsuitable submissions.

As we’ll see later, the editorial review often leads to more reviews by other experts that can either lead to an accepted or rejected manuscript.

In the case of editorial book reviews, customers (such as school librarians for children’s books) may read editorial reviews to decide on purchasing a book.

These reviews often capture the essence of the story and help readers understand whether or not a book received critical acclaim.

Here’s an example from the editorial reviews section of the 2021 Newbery winning title, When You Trap a Tiger, as seen on the book’s Amazon page:

editorial review example - when you trap a tiger
An example from the editorial reviews section of the 2021 Newbery winning title, When You Trap a Tiger

2. To maintain a publication’s reputation

Many scientific journals only publish a fraction of the submitted manuscripts. The British science journal Nature only publishes about 8% of the 200 submissions received each week.

Editorial reviews help them maintain the quality of their published work. These reviews ensure that every submission published is:

  • Original; not published elsewhere
  • Within the scope of the journal’s interest and that of their readers
  • Scientifically relevant
  • Conclusive (in terms of research findings) and impactful

Providing high value is critical as not many journals are open access publications—up to 42% of scholarly articles are behind a paywall.

3. To create effective marketing

Book sales depend, to an extent, on positive editorial reviews. Authors who receive positive editorial reviews can use them for book marketing by:

  • Sharing them on social media
  • Adding a quote from the review as a blurb on the book cover or back cover
  • Including the reviews on promotional material like press releases
  • Sending quotes to bookstores, conferences, and other bookselling opportunities

Reviews help get the word out about books, especially for self-published authors who may not have as much book promotion budget as traditionally published ones.

When to Do Editorial Reviews

The timing of editorial reviews depends on the type.

Journal editorial reviews happen after submission and before peer reviews. Books can receive editorial reviews shortly before publication or after publication.

Good to Know: With GatherContent you can free up your editorial team to focus on content creation, not operational admin!

Editorial Reviews for Journal Publications

When a journal receives a manuscript for potential publication, they first run pre-checks. After the pre-check, the manuscript is sent to an academic editor with subject matter expertise. This editor—usually part of the journal’s editorial board—performs the editorial review.

They will evaluate the manuscript’s content to match the journal’s guidelines and decide whether it’s up to standard. After the review, the editor can choose to:

  1. Reject the submission
  2. Accept the submission and send it off to a peer review
  3. Request further edits, after which the piece will need to be resubmitted

The peer-review process is performed by a small group of experts in the same industry as the submission's authors. They’ll review the research and evaluate the relevance of the subject matter. Peer reviewers will then leave notes, edits, or suggestions in the manuscript and revert to the editor.

Next, the editor will decide, based on feedback from the peer review, whether to seek more peer reviews, reject the manuscript, ask for more edits, or accept the piece as suitable to publish. Once approved, the manuscript will undergo copyedits for grammar and readability, then proofreading and formatting before publishing.

Editorial Reviews for Books

For books, authors can send advance copies of their manuscripts to review sites and professional reviewers before publication. These experts can publish their reviews before the book is released or shortly after.

The Editorial Review Process with GatherContent

Whether you’re writing an editorial book review or reviewing a manuscript submission for a journal, an effective, collaborative editorial review workflow will simplify your task.

gathercontent collaboration editorial review screenshot
GatherContent supports highly collaborative editorial reviews

GatherContent is a content workflow platform designed to help teams who collaborate on content. If you work with a journal publication, you know how confusing the workflow can get as some manuscripts pass from editor to authors to peers and back again to authors.

With GatherContent, you can keep everyone up-to-date on your content’s journey by:

  • Providing a cloud-based content hub for centralized work
  • Developing custom content templates to match your publication’s needs
  • Adding built-in content guidelines so that approved work is consistent
  • Assigning tasks to collaborators with due dates
  • Working simultaneously on documents
  • Getting feedback from relevant team members
Good to Know: Stop wondering who has the manuscript and when it’s your turn to step in when you start using GatherContent. Start your free trial today.

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