Written by Emily Harstone March 20th, 2023

50 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. Not all are open to submissions right now, but many are. All of them do pay their authors. Some pay well and others pay a token amount.

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.

Escape Artists (Escape Pod, PseudoPod, Cast of Wonders, PodCastle, CatsCast)
A 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. CatsCast only publishes speculative fiction about cats. The various publications pay $100 for full-length reprints and more for original works.

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. They pay €250 for a story/essay; €75 for flash fiction; €50 per poem. 

Salamander, an established and long running print journal, pays contributors for poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and flash. Although they do not disclose how much.

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. 

Nashville Review
This respected paying market is open to fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and translation submissions in January, May, and September. They accept art and comics year-round.

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 CAD70 per published page, plus a one-year subscription.

An online publication of dark writing. They primarily publish horror, sci-fi, fantasy, magical realism, and writing that’s otherwise weird or macabre. Within these genres, they like memorable, meaningful writing that contemplates what it means to be human. They pay a token $10 to all contributors.

Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine
This paying and competitive magazine publishes short stories and novellas in the mystery genre.

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.

Contrary Magazine
Contrary Magazine publishes short stories, flash fiction, essays, and poetry. You must invoice them within a month of submitting to recieve payment.

Aurora Journal
This publisher of poetry and prose pays $12 per piece.

Eye to the Telescope
Eye to the Telescope is an established online journal that focuses on publishing speculative poetry. They pay authors 4¢ per word, rounded up to the nearest dollar. They pay a minimum of $4 per poem, and a maximum of $25. They usually have themed issues. 

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.

The Sun
A wonderful, advertisement-free magazine. Their pay starts from $300 for fiction, and essays, and from $150 for poetry. They also give contributors a complimentary one-year subscription to The Sun. They only accept submissions without a fee through the post now.

A literary journal that pays $25 for short stories and $10 for flash fiction and poetry. They usually have themed submission calls. They only accept postal submissions from US-based writers, and emailed submissions from writers elsewhere.

The Threepenny Review
This established literary journal publishes poetry and prose and they pay very well. 

Poetry Magazine
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.

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. They post previous stats, including payouts, here

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.

Bennington Review
Bennington Review publishes two print issues a year and they pay their writers. Prose writers receive up to $250, poetry writers are paid $25 per poem. 

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.

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.

One Story
One Story publishes 12 short stories 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.

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.

The Deadlands
A paying speculative fiction market. They accept reprints.  They are mainly looking for works that explore death, dying, grief, loss, Death personified, the afterlife/the underworld, etc. They pay $0.10 per word for short fiction up to 5,000 words, and  $50 per poem.

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.

Delicate Friend
This journal publishes erotic writing and should only be accessed by authors 18+. They pay a token amount. 

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 have limited submission windows via Submittable, and also accept work by post during their submission periods.

This is a respected science fiction journal that publishes everything from short stories to novellas. They pay well. They also accept serialized novels.

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 have an associated market which only publishes translations,

They offer “artists and writers a unique framework within which to show creative work that incorporates text”. They pay £50.

Haiku Journal
They pay very small token amounts for Haiku.

The Ex-Puritan
This newly renamed Canadian literary journal publishes and pays for poetry and prose.

The Gettysburg Review
An established publisher of poetry and fiction. They have a fee for electronic submissions but all postal submissions are free.

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 $30 per piece, or $75 for cover art.

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.

Woods Reader
A publication for those who love woodland areas that pays for poetry and prose. They only accept work from writers in the U.S. or Canada.

A terrific paying literary journal focused on publishing Young Adult fiction and nonfiction.

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.

Brilliant Flash Fiction
This quarterly flash fiction publication pays $20 via PayPal.

Flash Frog
A paying market for flash fiction.

Menagerie publishes fictions, essays, and poems, and are a paying market.

The Drift
A respected magazine focused on culture and politics, they accept a wide variety of nonfiction, as well as some fiction and poetry. They pay well.

Raconteur Magazine
This Canadian lit mag can only offer token payments at this time.

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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