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Dear all,

I just received a letter from editors of one of top journals, saying "Though the expert consulted felt that your paper, "is a solid paper," the expert did not recommend publication in the journal."

It is my first paper and it is a situation that I may not expect a guidance from my advisor for submission.

The only reason I chose the top journal is that I have no idea about this matter and wanted to learn the reality.

Now, I am a little puzzled in understanding the response from the editors. What does it mean by "solid paper"? Can I be encouraged to submit my paper to another top journal, or is it just a common expression to be used in rejection?

Thank you for your concern. Any advice will be appreciated.

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closed as not constructive by Andres Caicedo, Will Jagy, Benjamin Steinberg, Bill Johnson, Henry Cohn Dec 29 '11 at 2:52

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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Solid paper means: should be published somewhere, just not in Annals/JAMS/Acta/Inventiones. My advice is: write to the editor, tell him you are new at this, and maybe you could ask him/referee what their journal suggestion is. On the other hand, this is not really an appropriate question for MO... –  Igor Rivin Dec 28 '11 at 23:36
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Related questions have been asked on MO before - if you haven't already seen them, you might wish to look at mathoverflow.net/questions/7284/how-to-select-a-journal mathoverflow.net/questions/19065/… mathoverflow.net/questions/3512/top-specialized-journals mathoverflow.net/questions/42/… –  Yemon Choi Dec 28 '11 at 23:36
    
They're saying your paper is good, but for whatever reason it's not right for that journal at that time. There's many reasons they may have rejected it: the journal is focusing more on different topics at the moment, perhaps your result is too specialized for a general audience, etc. –  Ryan Budney Dec 28 '11 at 23:37
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The one distinction to be made is that it was not sent for a full referee report. The journal has excessive backlog at this time and is "pre-screening." So this is not entirely the same as a rejection by someone who really sat down and went through line by line. My experience in the same situation is that the expert may not be willing to spend the time for a more detailed report, or if some more detail is supplied it may never get back to you. –  Will Jagy Dec 29 '11 at 0:01
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I strongly recommend you seek advice from someone who knows you personally and is familiar with your field. I always asked my thesis advisor (and others) this and I always got good advice. –  Frank Thorne Dec 29 '11 at 3:30
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