Written by Emily Harstone

49 Literary Journals That Pay Their Authors

“It is a sad fact about our culture that a poet can earn much more money writing or talking about his art than he can by practicing it.”

– W.H. Auden

As someone who makes their living writing about writing and publishing, I can attest to how truthful Auden’s quote is. It is hard making a living as a writer, but it is even harder making a living as a poet or an author of short fiction.

Many literary journals do not pay their writers. This is because most are projects of passion, are not for profit, or are run by an individual or a small group of people who love to write and read, but do not necessarily have a lot of money. Many of these journals are run by schools with underfunded English departments. I would say that over 75% of literary journals do not pay their writers. I have no problem with that, but it is nice to be paid occasionally.

For your reading pleasure are literary journals that do pay. They may not be the most prestigious journals (although some of them are), and not all are open to submissions right now,  but most are. All of them do pay their authors. Some pay well and others pay a token amount.

1. Frontier

Frontier Poetry accepts submissions year-round. They accept work from both new and emerging poets who have not published more than one full-length collection of poetry. Authors of any number of chapbooks and story collections may submit. Frontier pays poets $50 for each published poem, up to $150. They have a faster response option for BIPOC identifying writers. To learn more, visit their website here.

2-5. Escape Artists (Escape Pod, PseudoPod, Cast of Wonders, PodCastle) Escape Artists is the publishing group that publishes all of its stories in audio and text formats. They are known for their genre podcasts and have a large following. Each publication has a separate focus. For example Cast of Wonders focuses on a young adult audience whereas Escape Pod only publishes sci-fi. They will soon launch CatsCast, which is speculative fiction about cats – you can read the announcement here. The various publications pay $100 for full-length reprints and more for original works. 

6. Banshee

Banshee, a print literary journal from Ireland, accepts submissions of poetry, fiction, flash fiction, and creative nonfiction. All authors published in the journal will receive payment, as well as a copy of the magazine. Visit their website here.

7. Salamander

Salamander, an established and long running print journal, pays contributors for poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and flash. Although they do not disclose how much. You can learn more here.

8. Clarkesworld

Clarkesworld Magazine is a Hugo and World Fantasy Award-winning science fiction and fantasy magazine that publishes short stories, interviews, articles and audio fiction on a monthly basis. They pay very well. Visit their website here.

9. Nashville Review

This respected paying market is open to submissions in January, May, and September. Learn more here.

10. The Malahat Review

The Malahat Review is an established and respected print magazine based out of Canada. They mostly publish work by Canadian writers but are open to international writers as well. They purchase first world serial rights and, upon acceptance, pay CAD65 per published page, plus a one-year subscription. Copyright reverts to the author upon publication. To learn more, visit their website here.

11.Wood Cat Review 

Wood Cat Review is a new online journal of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction about life in the wilderness. Wood Cat Review pays authors published in the journal. Pay for poetry and prose is $20 for the first page and $10 for subsequent pages, with a $50 maximum payment. Learn more here.

12. Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine

This paying and competitive magazine publishes short stories and novellas in the mystery genre. To learn more, read their submission guidelines here.

13. Breath & Shadow

They publish only authors who have disabilities, although they define that term broadly. The pay scale is $20 for poetry, and $30 for fiction and nonfiction. To learn more, visit their website here.

14. Contrary Magazine

Contrary Magazine publishes short stories, flash fiction, essays, and poetry. They pay $20 per author per issue — the length of the piece does not factor into the payment. To learn more, visit their website here.

15. Claw & Blossom

All work they publish must contain elements of the natural world and most issues are themed. They publish poetry and prose. They pay $25 per accepted piece. Visit their website here.

16. Eye to the Telescope

Eye to the Telescope is an established online journal that focuses on publishing speculative poetry. They pay authors 3¢ per word, rounded up to the nearest dollar. They pay a minimum of $3 per poem, and a maximum of $25. They usually have themed issues. Learn more here.

17. Aniko Press
A thoughtfully designed print and digital magazine that also runs a regular (payment free) flash fiction contest. They pay for fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry, and each themed issue contains ten to fifteen pieces. To learn more, go here.

18. The Sun

A wonderful, advertisement-free magazine. They pay from $300 to $2,000 for fiction, essays, and interviews, and $100 to $250 for poetry. They also give contributors a complimentary one-year subscription to The Sun. Learn more here.

19. THEMA 

A literary journal that pays $25 for short stories and $10 for flash fiction and poetry. They usually have themed submission calls. To learn more, visit their website here.

20. The Virginia Quarterly Review

This established literary journal publishes poetry and prose and they pay very well. Learn more here.

21. Poetry

Poetry Magazine was founded in Chicago by Harriet Monroe in 1912. The magazine established a reputation early on by publishing many important poems of T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, Marianne Moore, Wallace Stevens, William Carlos Williams, and many others. They pay a minimum of $300 per poem. They are reading submissions on land acknowledgement and on monuments until end-March, apart from unthemed submissions. You can visit their website here.

22. Short Story Magazine

Short Story is an online magazine based on Substack that hopes to provide amazing short stories to subscribers, and to pay authors well. They only publish one story a month, but the published author receives $100 plus 50% of the subscription revenue. Depending on the number of subscribers, this could provide excellent payment. According to the editor: “The New Yorker pays roughly $7,500 per story, and I sincerely hope to go way past that.” However it is clear that the current revenue is considerably less than that. Learn more here.

23. AGNI

This is a respected and established journal. They are published by Boston University. They charge for electronic submissions, but you submit via post for free. You can visit their website here.

24. Bennington Review

Bennington Review publishes two print issues a year and they pay their writers. Prose writers receive up to $200, poetry writers are paid $20 per poem. To learn more, visit their website here.

25. Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine

Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine is one of the better-paying markets there is out there, for science fiction content. They predominantly favor character-oriented short stories and poetry. You can visit their website here.

30. CŌNFINGŌ MAGAZINE

CŌNFINGŌ publishes new short fiction, poetry and art from around the world. The journal is a beautiful print-only magazine. They pay £20 to all contributors. Learn more here.

31. One Story

One Story publishes 12 short story a year, at the rate of one per issue. They have a print and e-versions of the story that they publish. Often, the published story is accompanied by an interview with the author of the story. They pay $500 per story and offer 25 contributor copies. To learn more, go here

32. The New Yorker

It would be strange if such a list did not mention The New Yorker, which is legendary for how well it pays its writers, among other things. The New Yorker does not release the exact amount they pay on their website, although they pay very well. It is more a popular magazine than a literary  journal, and publication in the New Yorker can greatly help one’s reputation as a writer. Often it leads to book deals and many other publications. Of course, because of this, it is very hard to get a piece accepted by the New Yorker. Many famous authors still try for years.  It is easy to submit online, and a wonderful opportunity. To learn more, read their submission guidelines here.

33. The Deadlands

A paying speculative fiction market. They accept reprints. Learn more here.

34. The Forge

They pay $75 for nonfiction and fiction.  Submit early in the month. When they run out of free Submittable submissions they start charging, but the number re-sets every month. Learn more at their website here

35. Grain Magazine

Published four times per year, Grain Magazine is an internationally acclaimed literary journal that publishes engaging, surprising, eclectic, and challenging writing and art by Canadian and international writers and artists. They also have a monthly Submittable cap and start charging when they hit it. They pay a minimum of CAD50 and a maximum of CAD250. Learn more here.

36. The Paris Review

This is a very respected print journal and they do not disclose the amount they pay, only say that they do. They always are open to postal submissions, and have limited submission windows via Submittable. To learn more, visit their website here.

37. Analog

A respected science fiction journal that publishes everything from short stories to novellas. They pay well. Read their full submission guidelines here.

38. Typehouse Literary Magazine

This respected Portland-area print journal pays $25 per piece. They have some fee-free submission periods. Learn more here

39. Strange Horizons

They have a very low acceptance rates, pay professional rates, and most importantly, they publish very good stories in the speculative fiction genre. They currently have a Southeast Asian special submission call, until 30 April. Learn more about Strange Horizons here. They have an associated market which only publishes translations, Samovar.

41. MARY: A Journal of New Writing, 

A thoughtfully designed online journal sponsored by the MFA in creative writing program at Saint Mary’s College of California. Contributors are paid $50 per piece. Learn more here.

42. Frozen Wavelets

An e-zine focusing on speculative flash fiction and poetry that pays their contributors. Learn more here.

43. The Puritan

This Canadian literary journal publishes and pays for poetry and prose. Learn more here.

44. The Gettysburg Review

An established publisher of poetry and fiction. They have a fee for electronic submissions but all postal submissions are free. You can learn more here.

45. Blue Marble Review

Blue Marble Review is a quarterly online literary journal that publishes art and creative writing by people between the ages of 13-22. They pay them $25 per piece, or $75 for cover art. Learn more here.

46. The Other Side of Hope

A new journal dedicated to showcasing writing by authors who are immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers. The journal is also edited by immigrants and refugees, and aims to serve the immigrant and refugee community worldwide. They pay authors £100 for work published in the print issue, and £50 for work published online. Asylum seekers get a £50/£100 gift card. Learn more here.

47. Flypaper Lit

A literary journal based in Ohio that pays a token amount ($10). Learn more here

48. Voyage

A terrific literary journal focused on publishing Young Adult fiction and nonfiction. According to their FAQ they pay $200 per story. To learn more, go here.

49. The Cincinnati Review

They publish fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, and are an established paying market. They are open to submissions in September, December, and May – they have a cap during open submission periods, and submissions close when this cap is reached. Learn more here.

50. Uncharted

 A new journal that publishes  crime, mystery, science fiction, fantasy, horror, and thriller short stories and pays 200 dollars per short story. Learn more here.


Emily Harstone is the author of many popular books, including The Authors Publish Guide to Manuscript SubmissionsSubmit, Publish, Repeat, and The 2022 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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