Using a sample of articles published in top accounting journals, we estimate a multivariate model and find empirical evidence of factors influencing delay in article acceptance. Acceptance delay is measured as the time from article submission to acceptance. We find that article length and journal workload are significantly and positively associated with acceptance delay, whereas the distance to historical aspirations in terms of journal impact factor, top corresponding authors and affiliations, as well as corresponding author affiliation with institutions in the USA or the Netherlands, are significantly and negatively associated with acceptance delay. We also find significant differences in acceptance delays related to specific journal procedures and editorial policies. Finally, we observe that acceptance delay increases over time.