Submission Guidelines

Note: After Happy Hour Review will be taking a break from considering new submissions, starting June 1, as we use this time to catch up on our backlog and work towards publishing Issue 11. Thank you for understanding.

*****All submissions sent to our email address will be deleted unread.*****

The After Happy Hour Review is an online journal produced by members of the Hour After Happy Hour Writing Workshop. We gravitate towards work that is quirky, accessible, and unconventional. An ideal piece might cover a subject few people write about or cover familiar subjects from an unexpected angle.

We also accept visual art, be it digital photos, paintings, collages.

Our editors come from varying backgrounds with their own inclinations, tastes, and preferences. If you are local, we encourage you to attend a workshop to get a sense of the journal’s aesthetic and the people behind it. If you are not, please read the journal before you submit.

We publish at least two issues every year and accept submissions year-round. We especially appreciate the opportunity to publish new and emerging writers and nominate pieces published in After Happy Hour Review for awards and anthologies as often as possible. We are independent and proud of it.

General Submission Guidelines

  • We cannot offer any payment to our authors/artists at this time.
  • After Happy Hour Review only accepts submissions through Submittable.
  • Please do not mail or email us your submissions, we have a workflow. Our email is for queries or correspondence ONLY.
  • After Happy Hour Review accepts simultaneous submissions. If accepted elsewhere, please let us know as soon as possible via email so that we may remove your piece from consideration.
  • After Happy Hour Review does not accept reprints. Original work only, please.
  • We do accept multiple submissions in multiple categories. But please keep your number of pieces to a reasonable amount.
  • Accepted submissions may be edited for grammar, punctuation and spelling errors. The writer will have a chance to yay or nay any proposed changes.

Poetry – (Up to five poems, any length)

Please use standard font and formatting, unless it’s a stylistic choice. 12 point with serifs please. We like poems that take risks, explore human desire, obsession, angst, pop-culture; anything wild, funny, corporal. Compel us with works that urge us to explore our own physical bodies, our mental capacities, and our emotional horizons. Poems that use rhythm and technique will be especially considered. Formal, experimental, traditional, and everything in-between.

Flash Fiction – (1,000 words and under)

After Happy Hour Review wants flash with uncompromising language and original ideas.

The submission cannot be a vignette or a fragment, but a complete story that could not possibly be longer than 1,000 words. One thousand and one words would ruin it.

Be bold and take risks, make an impact and make it early. Don’t give us characters that mildly care about something, plots that kind of make the reader turn the page, language that sort of places us in the heat of the story.

Short Fiction – (1,000 to 6,000 words)

After Happy Hour Review sets the limit at 6,000 words, but be advised excessive length is the top reason why we reject short fiction. Oftentimes we run into stories that start strong, but simply go on for too many pages to maintain their effectiveness. Make sure your piece has no fat to cut and send it in.

Stylistically, our tastes for longer fiction match our tastes for flash: Original ideas, uncompromising language. Make an impact and make it early.

For reference, see Brandon Getz’s “White People” in Issue Three.

Creative Nonfiction – (1,000 to 6,000 words)

We believe creative nonfiction should not read like an academic essay, a newspaper article, or a blog post. We look for creative nonfiction filled with with drama, tension, characterization, plot, etc. – all the elements of first rate fiction.

For reference, check Jacob Mays’ “T.A.F.T” in Issue 3 or Melissa Wiley’s “Dragonflies Among Us,” in Issue 4.

Visual Art 

After Happy Hour Review takes pride in publishing more visual art than most of its contemporaries. Check out some back issues to see if your work fits with our aesthetic. We will not make any alterations to visual submissions without permission of the artist.

Paintings, drawings, photographs, and digital art are all accepted, as are submissions that combine text and visuals. Images should be 300dpi and saved as either .jpeg or .pdf files.

Response Times

According to Duotrope, 22.5 days is our average response time. However, we often respond much more quickly and aim to respond within one to three weeks. We know waiting sucks. Since we meet in person to discuss work, holidays, issue releases, and readings or other backlogs can delay evaluation of your work. Visual submissions typically take somewhat longer. We originated as a writing workshop, and try to stay true to our roots by providing feedback whenever possible. Feel free to query after 3 months, if you still haven’t heard from us by then.


We acquire First Publishing Rights (the right to be recognized as the original publisher) and Electronic Archive Rights (the right to feature your work on the website and in our digital issues). By being published in the After Happy Hour Review, you also grant us permission to nominate your work for various awards and anthologies including the Pushcart Prize, Best of Net, Bettering American Poetry, and Verse Daily, among others. After publication, you are free to have the piece republished elsewhere, although as a courtesy we request you identify and acknowledge After Happy Hour Review as the original publisher. At your request, content can be removed from the website, but cannot be removed from the issues themselves.



Contact us at hourafterhappyhour [at] gmail [dot] com