American Astronomical Society

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Direct Submission of AAS Journal Articles from Authorea and Overleaf

The American Astronomical Society has partnered with Authorea and Overleaf to provide direct manuscript uploads for initial submissions to our peer review system for The Astronomical Journal, The Astrophysical Journal, and the The Astrophysical Journal Supplement. The Astrophysical Journal Letters will be included when it is integrated into the main peer review system in 2018. In addition to sending the LaTeX manuscript and all the figures, a direct upload from Authorea or Overleaf will pre-populate the peer review system with some Authorea or Overleaf metadata, e.g. corresponding author name and affiliation and article title. These features will make the initial submission process faster and saves authors time.

Authors should remember that a direct Authorea or Overleaf upload is only the first step in the submission process. The corresponding author must still log on to our peer review system and supply the remaining metadata, review the output, and submit. Authors will be contacted by the editorial staff when submission is complete.

Instructions on how to create and upload an Authorea document for initial review are available on the Authorea website. Overleaf authors with questions should visit the Overleaf contact page.


Frequently asked questions about direct uploads from collaborative platforms.

  1. How do I access direct upload?
    • Sign in to Authorea and create a manuscript. Templates using the latest AASTeX classfiles are available. When ready to submit, click on the "Document" tab in the upper left corner and select "Publish" and "Submit to a Journal or Server". In the next window search for "AAS" and hit the Submit button. Selecting the "Test submission (download)" check box will create a zip package of all your files but not submit to the system. A full submission will send your files and some meta-data information to our peer review site.
    • In Overleaf you need to start with an AAS Journals Template. A "Submit to AAS" button will appear in the top bar of the manuscript. If you sign in to Overleaf clicking this button will send the manuscript and files to the AAS Journals submission site along with your basic meta-data information. Clicking on the submit button without signing in only provides information on how to submit the manuscript.
  2. Are there any costs to use a direct upload for initial submission?
    • Authorea allows users to write an unlimited number of public articles but only allows one free private article. To have more private Authorea articles you can get a paid account or check with your institution to see if they have a license (which may be through the library).
    • Overleaf has a free plan with unlimited projects. These are unlisted projects which can be shared easily by URL but are not made public (Overleaf privacy and security). The free plan also has limited storage space (1 GB) and only allows 60 files per project. To have protected projects that only invited collaborators can access and to increase these limits, you can get a paid account or check with your institution to see if they have a license (which may be through the library).
  3. Why do I still have to log in to the AAS peer review system after a direct Authorea or Overleaf upload?
    • Submitting your LaTeX file and figures is only the first step in a submission. We require more information than is sent in the metadata of an Authorea or Overleaf upload. Additional tasks in the peer review system include selecting a subject corridor for the manuscript, selecting a desired journal for publication, and providing any other material relevant to the editorial process, such as enhanced data products, publication charge information, and obtaining copyright forms.
  4. How will I know when the submission is complete?
    • The last step is to review the submission. When that is done the editorial office will contact you to let you know that the submission is complete. Further email messages will arrive when a reviewer has agreed to read the manuscript.
  5. What do I do if my Authorea author metadata is not what I want for the manuscript?
    • Authorea will soon be upgrading their author management tools, which will allow for greater flexibility. In the meantime authors can add or update an authors.tex file in Authorea so that the preferred AASTeX markup is used. An example would be:
      % Please follow strictly "2.3 Title and Author Information"
      % of
      % in the current file, before the final \fi macro
      \author{Josh Nicholson}
      \affiliation{INFN, Sezione di Firenze \&  Dept. of Physics and Astronomy, University of Florence, Via G.~Sansone 1, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino, Italy}
      \author{Alberto Pepe}
      \author{Matteo Cantiello}
      \affiliation{School of Physics \& Astronomy, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ, UK}
    • Overleaf transmits only basic metadata such as the title and corresponding author information along with the file package. You can overwrite this meta-data within the peer review system.
  6. Why does direct manuscript upload only work for an initial submission? Why can I not upload a revised manuscript?
    • When an article is submitted it is assigned an unique identifier that is used to track it and all correspondence in the peer review system. Revisions must be uploaded using these identifiers to ensure they go to the right place, and this can only be done via the instruction sent to the corresponding author after a review has arrived and an editorial decision has been reached.
  7. Why did the author names or affiliation metadata change in the peer review system when I submitted my revised manuscript?
    • When a new or revised LaTeX manuscript is uploaded, our peer review system can pull out specific metadata from the LaTeX but with a direct Authorea or Overleaf upload the LaTeX is not parsed. Only the Authorea or Overleaf-supplied metadata is used, which explains why keywords need to be entered by hand with an Authorea upload but not with a revision.
  8. I am having problems. Who do I contact for help?