Written by Emily Harstone October 11th, 2021

20 Approachable Literary Journals

If you are just starting to submit your work to literary journals, or perhaps you just want to avoid rejection, this list is for you.

All of the literary journals in this list accept between 30 and 50% of what is submitted to them, and a few have a higher acceptance rate. So the odds of your work being accepted just went up.

These are not the most prestigious journals; publication in them, in all likelihood, will not change your writing life in any way, but they are not a bad place to start if you are new to submitting your writing.

Make sure to read the guidelines before submitting to know if your work fits. Just because they are approachable, doesn’t mean that they will accept angry poetry when they only publish nature poetry!

Not all literary journals in this list are currently open to submissions, but most are. It is also important to note that this information is subject to change. Sometimes a journal that was once easy to get into no longer is, so if you are seeing this list long after it was published, please keep that in mind. The list is in no particular order.

All of the information used to ascertain if the market is approachable or not was found through research done at the websites Duotrope and The (Submission) Grinder.

50-Word Stories As their name suggests, they publish only 50-word stories. They read submissions every month between the 1st and the 15th. They publish around 50% of what is submitted to them.

Anti-Heroin Chic Anti-Heroin Chic publishes poetry, fiction and nonfiction. They recently started allowing simultaneous submissions.

Ariel Chart They publish poetry and short fiction.

Potato Soup An online journal that publishes flash fiction and short stories. They have an over 50 percent acceptance rate.

Otoliths  An online journal of visual poetry, poetry, short fiction, essays, and art, they accept over half of what is submitted to them.

Children, Churches, and Daddies They bill themselves as “The UN-religious, NON-family oriented literary and art magazine”. They publish poetry, prose, and art work online.

Academy of the Heart and Mind Their mission is to help emerging writers. They accept over 60% of what is submitted. They publish poetry, art, prose, and creative nonfiction online.

Writing in a Woman’s Voice An online poetry journal that publishes over 50% of what is submitted to them. They do not respond if they are not interested.

Down in the Dirt Down in the Dirt publishes fiction and poetry. They have an acceptance rate of 60%.

CafeLit A UK-based fiction journal that publishes almost 80% of what is submitted.

Drunk Monkey A journal that publishes work about literature and film, and accepts about 40% of what is submitted.

The Cabinet of Heed This online literary journal has an over 70% acceptance rate, and publishes fiction, poetry, and visual art.

The Poet They accept almost 100% of what is submitted to them.

Grand Little Things A journal of mostly formal poetry. They accept over 50% of what they receive.

Autumn Sky Poetry Daily This journal has a very different approach. You are to submit one poem only, and if it is accepted you will know because it will be published online within seven says of submitting it. If it does not appear, it was not chosen.

The Rat’s Ass Review As the editor of this journal states “Rat’s Ass Review is an online poetry journal whose editorial fancies are no more arbitrary than any other; they are simply more overtly so. I publish what I like”.

Bewildering Stories A webzine that publishes experimental and speculative writing.    

The Daily Drunk only accepts submissions on Thursdays and aim to reply within two days. They publish humor, film, and all pop culture-related submissions of previously unpublished fiction, nonfiction, poetry, lists, reviews, quizzes, and comics.

Emily Harstone is the author of many popular books, including The Authors Publish Guide to Manuscript SubmissionsSubmit, Publish, Repeat, and The 2021 Guide to Manuscript Publishers.

She regularly teaches three acclaimed courses on writing and publishing at The Writer’s Workshop at Authors Publish. You can follow her on Facebook here.





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