Getting stories published in magazines
I have trouble with finding markets for short stories - there are too few
UK ones, but there are so many US ones that I don't know where to start.
Dozens of US paper magazines exist, from "the New Yorker" down,
and many more magazine are online, so many that I wonder who reads
them. Some issues to bear in mind when choosing where to send off are
- Quality - some literary magazines have been around for decades and have
acquired a good reputation. New WWW magazines may look very smart, but
how good are they? If you send your best story to one and it gets published, will you regret it later?
You can get an idea of a publication's value from reading the bios of the authors.
Look through Best American Short Stories or Pushcart anthologies to see where
the best stories are published.
- Are minor publications worth it? - Views differ over whether publications in minor
magazines lead to success in big magazines. I suspect that it doesn't help
much, but it's an end in itself.
- Are regional publications worth it? - They're ends in themselves
- Genre magazines - springboard or type-casting? - I'd say springboard. Use a
pen-name if you're worried.
- Timing - Many US mags have a summer break. No UK ones do.
- Simultaneous submission - Check on policy. UK magazines are less likely
to accept simultaneous submissions.
- Electronic submission - More paper-based magazines are offering this facility, though
sometimes at a price.
Various yearbooks exist, listing details. Online there is
Here are some magazines that Eratosphere people have been
published in, or recommend.
Whatever you do, ensure you read the submission details. Some magazines want 2
copies of each story. Others suggest particular fonts and sizes. It's a pain.
- Lance Levens wrote - The online market for short stories remains healthy.
storyglossia nominated one of my pieces for a Pushcart in
Storysouth is also thriving
as well as some regional sites such as Dead Mule.
Another encouraging note for us in the USA is the recently online short story
submissions programs by more established journals such as
There are plenty of traditional print journals where short fiction thrives: The
Georgia Review, The Southern Review, The Virginia Quarterly Review, Sewannee
Review, Hudson Review, Shenandoah, The Florida Review. These are well-known,
attract big names and usually pay. But in addition, there are dozens of less
well-known entry level zines:
are just a few I've published in and am familiar with.
- Janice D. Soderling suggested some Canadian magazines which are affiliated with
- David Landrum's July haul included stories in
- Tim Love wrote - My list of published pieces mentions some (mostly extinct) magazines. In England I think the only paper options for literary stories are
Updated November 2009