Publication at Last!
Congratulations! You made it. Your article is now “accepted” and you may list it as such on your resume. The article next enters the publication queue at the journal. Depending on the number of articles in line ahead of yours, their length (pages), it may be several months before your article will actually appear in print in an issue. When the journal begins work on the actual issue in which your paper will appear, they will send you a “proof” of your paper. At this point, your article is considered to be “in press” and you may list it as such on your resume.
Proofs are simply prints of the article as it will appear upon publication in the journal. Journals provide authors with proofs to give them an opportunity to catch and fix any errors that might have occurred upon translation of the article. As a general rule, you are normally expected to offer comments on the layout. At this stage you cannot make any significant changes to the text of the article. However, you may fix minor errors such as typos and formatting errors.
At this stage, authors are also offered the opportunity to purchase reprints of the article at cost. Reprints are generally expensive. Today some journals offer authors the opportunity to print a set number of copies of their article upon publication. One important point of which to be aware is that once published your article becomes the copyrighted property of the journal’s publisher so you will not be free to photocopy it or if you have or obtain an electronic copy to distribute that to friends and colleagues.
Shortly after you return the corrections to the journal your article will likely become available on-line. Today many journals make articles available on-line several weeks in advance of the actually publication of the issue of the journal in which the article will appear.
About six to eight weeks after your article appears in the print issue of the journal (Congratulations! You are now officially an author!), your advisor will receive any reprints he/she may have purchased.