Authors’ Frequently Asked Questions

Return to Author Information section

Manuscript Preparation


User Accounts


Submission Fees


Submitted Manuscripts


Manuscript Preparation

How do I prepare a manuscript for submission?

Please read the journal’s Author Guide completely. It covers all journal requirements for preparing and submitting your manuscript. It also describes the scope of the journal and your options for article types.

Your main text document must be in either Microsoft Word (.doc) or Rich Text Format (.rtf). If you prepare a PDF of your main text, it must be in addition to a Word or RTF document. While your tables must be inserted into the text document, your figures may be either inserted or individually submitted separately from the text document. See below: “How do I upload my documents?” and “Should I insert my figures or upload them separately?”


Where do I submit my manuscript?

You will use the journal’s online submission Web site, Blood Bench>Press, available at You must have a user account in order to submit and, later, to check the progress of your manuscript through review. User accounts are free. To create one, go to the site and, on the upper left-hand side, click on create a new account.


After the first page of submitting a manuscript, I’m told that there is a problem with an e-mail address I provided. Why is this, and what can I do about it?

Be sure to double- or even triple-check each e-mail address you enter, whether a suggested reviewer or a co-author, to make sure it is up to date and entered correctly. The solution may be as simple as correcting a typo or may involve your having to find the person’s most current e-mail address. Note that each author must have a different e-mail address. If the same address is entered for multiple authors, you will receive an error message.


When will I know my manuscript ID during submission?

Bench>Press will assign you a manuscript number as soon as you have correctly completed the first page of submission. The number will be at the top of the next screen. The number will be in the format “BLOOD/20xx/xxxxxx.” Please use this number in all correspondence with the journal office regarding this manuscript.


I started a submission but put it on hold and then was told that the manuscript was withdrawn. Why? What can I do about this?

All partial submissions are withdrawn after 30 days if you do not upload a document. This is an automatic process, and journal staff can neither prevent it nor reverse it. If your partial submission has been withdrawn before you have uploaded a document, you must begin a new submission, which means being assigned a new manuscript number. Do not indicate that you are resubmitting a manuscript using the first number assigned to you. This is not the case. Your first submission was never completed and, thus, never seen by journal staff or by an editor. If you do make a resubmission indication because of an automatic withdrawal of a previous, partial submission, staff will remove that designation.


How do I upload my documents?

During submission, you will reach a page titled “File Upload Metadata,” where you will indicate the number of documents you want to upload. The default number of manuscript files is 1, and you will be asked how many images and supplemental files you want to upload. Whatever numbers you enter will result in open slots for you to browse and find documents to upload. For example, if you indicate that you want to upload 3 supplemental files, you will be given 3 slots. If you have 6 figures, but they are all inside a single document, such as in Word or a PDF, you will upload only 1 image file.

Your manuscript file should be either in MS Word (.doc or .docx) or Rich Text Format (.rtf). Your image files should be either JPEGs (.jpg), TIFFs (.tif), GIFs (.gif), EPS documents (.eps), or PDFs (.pdf).

The manuscript and image files will be combined into a single PDF for review. Supplemental files will remain separate. Supplements will not be converted from one format to another.

You should use the supplement uploading process to submit extraneous documents, such as a related article that has already been published, relevant to your new submission.

The size of the documents you upload will affect the amount of time for uploading, the amount of time for conversion, and the potential for uploading and conversion errors.

You may upload a PowerPoint document (.ppt) for your figures, but each figure will have to be on a single slide in an individual document. Six figures in PowerPoint format will have to be uploaded as 6 individual single-slide .ppt documents. If your figures have subsets that require additional slides, you will need to upload additional documents, such as "Fig1A.ppt," "Fig1B.ppt," and "Fig1C.ppt." A single multi-slide PowerPoint document will not convert correctly, and you will receive an error message.

Consult the FAQs linked from the top of any page on Blood Bench>Press. One of the frequently asked questions is “What can I do to ensure a quality conversion?” Follow the instructions in that FAQ’s response.


Should I insert my figures or upload them separately?

The choice is yours, but please don’t choose both options at once. If you do, the resulting PDF will feature the images you embedded followed by the images you uploaded individually.

If you choose to insert your figures into the MS Word or Rich Text formatted manuscript file, the document will be larger and will take longer to upload and convert. However, it is likely that the images in the converted PDF for review will be easily readable, and you can place them wherever you prefer throughout the document, though it is easiest for the editor and reviewers if you place them at the very end.

You may upload a single, multi-page PDF of your figures as an image. In that case, the number of images you indicate on the “File Upload Metadata” page is 1.

If you upload your images individually, the resulting PDF will show them in their original dimensions. If you uploaded a figure 1 graphic (JPEG or TIFF, for example) that is larger or significantly smaller in dimension than the letter-sized text pages that precede it, the PDF will show this, and that page containing the figure will be larger or smaller. If you upload an individual, single-slide PowerPoint document whose page dimensions are not standard letter-sized, the resulting PDF will truncate the figure to show only what appears in the center of that slide within the dimensions of a letter-sized page. Anything beyond those borders in your original slide will disappear. One thing you can do to prevent dramatic-looking figures at the end of the converted PDF is to crop as much surrounding white space as you can from the original figure file.

Again, consult the Bench>Press FAQ site, available from the top of any page in Blood Bench>Press.

Please note that the size of your figures for review is not restricted by the description in the journal’s Style Guide. That applies only if your manuscript is accepted for publication. Separate correspondence will come to you at that time. While it is ideal to size your figures for review the same as you would for production, it is possible that the resulting figures will be too small to read during review. Your figures for review must be easily readable. One reason that you may be asked to revise your manuscript or that your manuscript is rejected may be because of the readability of the figures.

All other aspects of preparing a figure, including titling, legends, adaptations, magnification, and image acquisition, must adhere to journal policies and the journal’s Style Guide.


How should I format my tables?

Tables should be inserted into the MS Word or RTF manuscript file. Consult the section about tables in the journal’s Style Guide. Do not upload or insert a table as a graphic (JPEG, TIFF, GIF).


On the “File Upload Metadata” screen, I am told that the number of figures or tables I entered is invalid.

This error message occurs for users accessing Blood Bench>Press via Microsoft Internet Explorer for Macintosh. You should change Web browsers, replacing Internet Explorer with Safari, Mozilla Firefox, or Netscape Navigator.


I received an e-mail saying my conversion failed.

Most of the time, you will be told if a specific document you uploaded as either a manuscript file or an image failed, but sometimes you will not. The conversion error may occur because your original document contains a font that the Bench>Press server cannot render correctly in the PDF for review. The error may occur as well because you uploaded a multi-slide PowerPoint document as an image instead of an individual, single-slide PowerPoint document for each figure. Make sure as well that no image appearing inside any document you uploaded is linked from another file on your computer. The image must be embedded, made part of the document. That includes inserting images into PowerPoint. Also, if you create your own PDF of figures, you must embed all fonts and images. Consult Bench>Press’ FAQ site, and contact the journal’s editorial office if you cannot solve the problem.


I was told in an e-mail that I need to review the converted PDF for review, but why can’t I find it in my Author Area?

As soon as your uploaded documents are converted into a single PDF for review, you must pay the $75 submission fee before you can review the PDF and approve of your submission in order to send it to the journal’s editorial office for processing. Your submission is inside a queue titled “Awaiting Submission Payment.” The e-mail alerting you that the conversion was successful indicates this, but the correspondence is automated and describes different submission types, not all of which require a fee. Only unsolicited regular submissions, such as Regular Articles and Brief Reports, require a fee. Letters to the Editor and invited Review Articles do not. The fee must be paid online using a Visa or MasterCard. Once the fee is paid, you will receive an e-mail serving as an acknowledgment and a receipt, and you will find your submission in the Author Area inside the queue “Ready for You to Proof.”


User Accounts

I am not the corresponding author of this manuscript or an author at all. May I still submit it on the corresponding author’s behalf?

Yes. However, you must establish your own user account on Blood Bench>Press. During submission, if you indicate someone other than yourself as a corresponding author, that individual will receive subsequent correspondence concerning the processing and review of the manuscript. However, you will too. If an editor requests a revision, both you and the corresponding author will have individual access to submit the revision. If the corresponding author’s e-mail address is not registered, however, that person will have to register first before accessing the manuscript.


How do I know if I already have a user account on the submission Web site?

Blood’s submission Web site is maintained by HighWire Press, a division of Stanford University Libraries. HighWire’s Bench>Press is used by many other journals for manuscript submission and review. If you have used another journal’s Bench>Press site with an account via your current e-mail address, it can be applied to Blood’s site. If you log on to Blood Bench>Press using the e-mail address and the password you established for the other journal’s site, you will be asked to complete registration for Blood’s site. Your e-mail address will hold a single user account for both journals under the same password.

At any time, you can browse to Blood Bench>Press and click on I have forgotten my password. Enter your e-mail address. The site will tell you immediately if the address does not have an account. If you do have an account, the site will ask a security question that you created when you established the account. If you do not remember the answer to this question, you can click on the link to contact Blood’s editorial office at If you established an account with another journal using Bench>Press, the security question and answer will apply to Blood’s site as well. If you change your password on another Bench>Press site, your Blood password will change as well.

Blood Bench>Press also includes a link to security-related frequently asked questions.


I’ve noticed that there are spaces for a secondary e-mail address and an assistant’s address. Will they also be able to access Blood Bench>Press?

No, not by logging on, but your assistant’s e-mail address will receive all correspondence sent through the Web site, including from journal staff and editors regarding a manuscript you have submitted. The secondary e-mail address will be used only for staff to be able to contact you should the primary and assistant’s e-mail addresses fail, but it will receive no correspondence automatically.


I’m told that one of the e-mail addresses I’ve provided in my user information is already registered. What do I do?

Contact the editorial office ( or click on the “Feedback” link on Blood Bench>Press and send a message. Journal staff will see where the address in question is already registered. You will not be able to include it in your account information. If the e-mail address that is shown as already registered is your own, it is possible, as mentioned above, that you have an account on another journal’s Bench>Press site or that your e-mail address has been included in another person’s account. Journal staff will be able to tell you if this is the case and will help you establish your own account.


I’m given the message that my e-mail address cannot be verified. What do I do?

This happens because Bench>Press verifies every e-mail address entered both for user registration and during manuscript submission. This verification occurs as soon as you click on a button to save or continue after entering the address, and normally the verification is quick. If Bench>Press cannot verify the address, you will not be able to continue. In the case of user registration, this can apply to your primary, secondary, or assistant’s e-mail address.

The first thing to do, if you receive an error notice or an e-mail saying that verification failed, is to look on the site to make sure that you correctly entered the e-mail address, especially the domain name, which comes after the @ symbol. Sometimes a user may be unaware that one of the e-mail addresses contains a space or a typographical error. The error message will indicate the address that cannot be verified. Regardless, you must proofread your e-mail addresses carefully.

If the problem occurs despite the addresses being correct to your knowledge, you may want to check that the e-mail host server in your office or at your university is not experiencing delays or errors in communication.

If that is not the problem, please contact the editorial office at


The PDF converted from my uploaded text document is showing me text in boxes or other unreadable characters instead of what I originally typed. Why is this, and what can I do about it?

This happens with text documents formatted in Microsoft Word for Macintosh. Bench>Press’ PDF converter and the journal’s editorial office computers are Windows-based. The scrambled characters in the PDF are those usually typed into the Word for Mac document using the font known as Symbol. If an editorial staff member opens the original Word document, those same scrambled characters will appear.

This happens because the coding behind the Symbol characters as seen in Word is different between a Macintosh and a PC. The Macintosh uses a character set known as Unicode for the special characters and even the regular characters typed in the Symbol font, while the PC has a more varied set of codes. The easiest way to solve this problem is to re-upload your manuscript text document in Rich Text Format (.rtf).


I was told that the conversion was successful, but, in the PDF, I see a figure with a message inside it: “QuickTime™ and a TIFF decompressor are needed to see this picture.”

This problem occurs with PowerPoint slides containing TIFFs when the slide was created on a Macintosh. The TIFFs are compressed so that they can be viewed easily inside the slide. Compression occurs with the QuickTime application, which is standard on a Mac. The journal office and the Bench>Press PDF converter are on the Windows platform, and Windows cannot read TIFFs that are compressed by QuickTime.

Journal staff cannot solve this problem for you because, if they open the original PowerPoint document you uploaded, they will see the same error message. You must replace each of the graphics inside your PowerPoint document with a JPEG or PNG that is not compressed. When in the “Save As…” window in the graphics application on your Mac, select “No Compression.” When in PowerPoint, go to the menu “Insert”>“Picture”>“From File” and select the newly created graphic. Do not drag and drop or copy and paste your graphics into your PowerPoint document. You must insert them as directed.


Submission Fees

What should I do if I cannot pay the submission fee by credit card?

If you cannot pay by Visa or MasterCard, you must contact the editorial office at indicating this. The journal can accept only the following:

  • Credit card (Visa or MasterCard),
  • Money order made out to BLOOD in U.S. dollars,
  • Check made out to BLOOD in U.S. dollars and drawn on a U.S. bank,
  • Cash in U.S. currency.

We cannot accept a Discover payment, a wire transfer or payment made via Western Union, a check made out to a recipient other than BLOOD, or currency other than American dollars. We also do not accept purchase orders.

The journal’s editorial office can provide you an invoice, but if you have rules about the receipt of an invoice, you must clearly and completely describe them, including the name and address of the invoice recipient. We send invoices via e-mail, so please provide an e-mail address if it is not your own.

Under all circumstances, you must indicate an intention to pay the fee, or you will not be able to complete your submission. Once we have this intention and/or information about where to send an invoice, we can release your manuscript from the “Awaiting Submission Payment” queue, and you can complete your submission without paying online.


What should I do if there is an error as I try to pay online?

If you believe that your credit card is valid but you experience problems with the Web site, first please wait. If, during the transmission of your credit card data, you click the “Back” button on your Web browser and try to re-send the information, you may conduct more than one transaction, and your card may be charged more than $50. Also, it is possible that because of a delay in transfer of credit card data, the Web site will issue a “time-out” error. This is for the security of your sensitive credit card data.

If you believe to have conducted a transaction successfully, but the site will not allow you to move forward in submitting the manuscript, contact and describe the situation. Provide your credit card number and, if you have it, a transaction verification number (similar to “VQEA×××××××”), and ask journal staff to verify a financial transaction. Often the staff will be able to locate the payment and will move the submission forward.

If the Web site indicates that the credit card information is invalid, but you believe that the card can be used, call the editorial office at 202-776-0548 providing the following:

  • Credit card number,
  • Expiration date,
  • Card security code,
  • Cardholder’s name exactly as it appears on the card.

Staff will conduct the transaction manually and, in the meantime, move the submission forward.

Sometimes a credit card transaction fails because the cardholder, especially an institutional one, requires prior authorization that you did not receive. In such a case, make sure that you are authorized to charge $50 on the card. Once you have done so, you will be able to make the payment on Blood Bench>Press.

If you believe that you have been charged twice or otherwise incorrectly charged, staff can issue a refund to your credit card.


I work for the National Institutes of Health and cannot pay the fee directly. What should I do?

NIH requires that its accounting department make credit card payments. The easiest solution is for you to provide your user access to Blood Bench>Press to the accounting representative and let that person access the site to make payment. If that is not possible, have the accounting representative contact the editorial office at or to call 202-776-0548. Be sure that this representative has the manuscript ID number, or else editorial staff will not be able to help that person.


If my submission is rejected without review or rejected after review, can I get a refund?

No. Once the submission is processed by journal staff and sent to the Editor-in-Chief for review consideration, you are no longer eligible for a refund unless you have been incorrectly charged or charged twice. The fee covers the staff’s processing of the submission, not its review.


How come, after I pay the fee, my manuscript is not automatically submitted and ready for the journal?

You must review and approve of each section of your submission before journal staff can access it and send it to the Editor-in-Chief. Once you have paid, your manuscript will be located inside the queue “Ready for You to Proof.” This allows you to replace, delete, or add documents for uploading and to change any of the responses that you provided on the Web site regarding your manuscript. You will have the chance to add or delete co-authors and keywords, and you will be able to change your responses to questions regarding paying for color figures, the declaration of commercial interest, authorship contributions, and other details.

This is a good time to very carefully review everything you have submitted to ensure proper spelling and accurate answers. It is a good time to make sure that you have adhered to all journal policies, that your manuscript text and abstract comply with the journal’s word count restrictions, that your authorship contribution statement is located in the Authorship section at the end of your manuscript, after “Discussion” and “Acknowledgments,” that your tables and figures are correct and easily readable, that you have included any preferred and nonpreferred reviewer suggestions, and that you have clearly and thoroughly declared any potential conflict of interest or commercial interest. If you re-upload documents, you will have to wait again for conversion and return to the queue “Ready for You to Proof.” Only by approving your submission will it be fully completed and will journal staff be able to access it for further processing.


What should I do if I am asked to revise my manuscript?

Follow all instructions in the e-mail sent to you from the Associate Editor requesting a revision. Even if the message reads as an acceptance of your manuscript, if there are instructions for submitting to Blood Bench>Press and addressing reviewers’ questions and concerns, you are being asked to submit a revision. The Associate Editor will ask you to red-line or highlight changes you make to the text of your manuscript. You may underline or make bold-face those changes. Do not try to upload a manuscript with changes highlighted from MS Word’s “Track Changes” feature. Blood Bench>Press will not be able to convert the document properly to show the same changes that Word displays. Also, follow the Editor’s instructions regarding submitting your copyright transfer form, and make sure, as with a new submission, that you have included your authorship contributions statement in the Authorship section, after “Discussion” and “Acknowledgments,” and that you have disclosed any conflict of interest.


How should I handle supplemental data?

Please refer to Blood’s Web page with instructions for submitting supplemental data. Supplements must be uploaded separately at every stage of a manuscript’s review, including at first submission. If your manuscript is accepted, please follow the instructions carefully in the letter informing you of the acceptance of your manuscript. We will not publish supplements that an editor or reviewer has not seen during the regular period of review of your submission. For each supplemental item (figure, table, video), you must include a comprehensive legend with a separate title. For example:

Figure S1. Descriptive Title.
Comprehensive figure legend.

This legend must be in either MS Word or Rich Text Format. Do not combine your video legends into one (e.g., "Supplemental Videos 1–3..."). You should include a reference to the supplement in your cover letter or in your response to the Associate Editor if you are submitting a revision, especially if you want it considered for publication. You must also be clear in your description of the supplement if you do not want it published alongside the article. The journal reserves the right to accept your manuscript for publication but to refuse to publish your supplement. Supplements are posted on to the journal’s Web site only. They are not printed.


I am an invited author. How do I submit my manuscript when I have completed writing it?

As an author invited by the Editor-in-Chief to submit a special article to Blood, you will receive e-mail with specific instructions. Important among them is that you do not submit a manuscript as new in Blood Bench>Press but, instead, log on to indicate whether or not you accept the invitation (look inside the queue “Respond to Invitation to Submit” in your Author Area). An unsubmitted “shell” will be created for you inside the queue “Submit an Invited Manuscript.” There you will complete the submission. You can always e-mail the editorial office at with questions during the submission process.


Do I have to pay the submission fee if I am an invited author?

No, but if you are being asked to pay as you submit, please e-mail the editorial office at for help.


Submitted Manuscripts

Why would my submission be returned to me before it is sent to the Editor-in-Chief?

Staff will perform a thorough check of your submission to ensure that you have followed all journal requirements. The following are reasons your manuscript may be sent back to you:

  • The author contribution statement does not appear in the Authorship section of your manuscript, at the end after “Discussion” and “Acknowledgments,” as well as in the metadata.
  • You have checked the box indicating that you were provided funding from an institution or organization that requires open access of your manuscript if it is accepted and published in Blood, but you did not provide an explanation on the title page of the manuscript. If you have received funding that carries such a requirement, you must also make a note of it on the title page and click on the check box to indicate your willingness to pay Blood’s open-access fee.
  • The figures are duplicated in the PDF for review, meaning you inserted them into the main text document and uploaded them individually.
  • Your text is over the journal’s word count limit either in the main text (from “Introduction” to the end of “Discussion”) or in the abstract. This applies to any submission type, so you must carefully consult the Author Guide for your specific article type’s word allowances.
  • Your manuscript document is missing a title page.
  • The figures are unreadable.
  • The fonts in your manuscript document are unreadable. Especially for authors from Asia, you must use fonts compatible with the Windows operating system as viewed in the United States.
  • Your PDF file has errors inside the text, such as special characters that, when converted from Word or RTF to PDF, appear as boxes. Again, you must use a standard font.
  • You have submitted too many figures and/or tables. For a regular manuscript, you are not limited to the number of tables, but you must submit no more than 7 figures. For a Brief Report, you can submit no more than 2 tables/figures, meaning either 2 tables, 2 figures, or a figure and a table. For a Letter to the Editor, you may include only one figure or one table, not one of each.
  • You did not provide a disclosure of conflict of interest, including commercial interest. Journal staff will make special note of this if one or more of your co-authors has an institutional affiliation that is not a university or government entity, especially if it is a pharmaceutical company.

Staff will include instructions on how to proceed if your manuscript has been returned to you. You will find the submission in your Author Area inside the queue “Papers Returned for Your Attention.”


What happens after the processing of my submission is complete?

When your submission is complete and when journal staff see no reason to return it to you, it will be sent to the Editor-in-Chief, who will determine if it is suitable for review and, if so, will assign an Associate Editor to administer the review. The Editor-in-Chief may reject your submission without assigning it to an Associate Editor or may choose to serve as the Associate Editor for the manuscript.

The Associate Editor will independently determine the manuscript’s suitability and may also reject it without review. Otherwise, the abstract will be sent to reviewers who the Associate Editor determines have the appropriate level of expertise to critically read and review the manuscript. When the Associate Editor receives responses from an appropriate number of people willing and able to provide the review, the full manuscript will be sent to them, and they will be under a deadline to provide a thorough and fair review, including suggestions for any revision of the manuscript prior to its acceptance for publication. Reviewers are obligated to recuse themselves if they have a conflict of interest in reviewing the manuscript.

Based on the reviewers’ recommendations, the Associate Editor will make a decision on the manuscript, either rejecting it, accepting it, or sending it back to you with instructions for a revision. This process may be repeated for subsequent versions of your manuscript as many times as it takes to either accept or reject it.


How can I keep track of the progress of my manuscript?

You may log on to Blood Bench>Press at any time, go to your Author Area, and find your manuscript inside the queue “Under Review - Check Status.” You will see a link to contact the journal’s editorial office. You can e-mail from that link or send an e-mail on your own to to inquire about the status of your manuscript. Journal staff will give you as much information as appropriate. No information will be given to reveal or compromise the identity of the reviewers or the opinions of editors while the reviews are in progress.

If a significant delay occurs, you should contact the office indicating the amount of time that has passed since your submission. You also may ask the identity of your Associate Editor if you do not already know it. Any inquiry you send to journal staff will be forwarded to that Editor’s office.


Will co-authors be able to track the manuscript too?

No. Even if the co-author’s e-mail address is registered in Blood Bench>Press, the manuscript will not appear in a queue in that person’s Author Area. Only you as corresponding author and/or submitter will be able to see the manuscript in a queue in your Author Area.