Admit it. The writer life can be a daunting one. We work hard to master story mechanics, sweat over voice and style, and struggle to determine just which writing rules to follow and which to break. After all that, finding a place to actually send our work for publication can feel like an afterthought.
Or worse, sometimes when we don’t know where to send our work, the writing can feel less worth it somehow.
Sure, we’re supposed to love the writing for its own sake. But that doesn’t mean we haven’t all been there anyway.
So here are eleven resources overflowing with publication opportunities for emerging writers. Use this list as the carrot stick that keeps you writing through your most recent work in progress, then find the perfect place from this list to finally hit submit.
Where to Find Publications That Accept Work from New and Unpublished Writers
The Review Review Magazine Database: offers a slew of literary and commercial publications that accept work from new writers. Here you can search publications by format (online or print), response time, and pay range.
The Review Review Classifieds: from the same publication that created the magazine search above, these classifieds save you the search time by listing calls for submissions for publications that are looking for work right now.
Chicken Soup for The Soul: publishes inspirational, true stories from “ordinary people having extraordinary experiences.” What’s great about this publication is the sheer number of titles they publish each year. That’s a lot of opportunities for new writers to get published. Be sure to check out their guidelines first for story themes and what they’re looking for.
Funds for Writers Newsletter: this email newsletter is particularly helpful for writers looking for fellowships, grants, and publication opportunities. With 35,000 subscribers, Funds for Writers must be doing something right.
Paying Flash Fiction Publications: these five paying publications listed on my site are looking for flash fiction only. Flash fiction stories range from 100-2000+ words, which means a great opportunity to get something under submission quickly. Resource lists payment rates, word counts, and deadlines for each publication.
LitReactor’s Publications by Genre: this resource covers more than just genre specific publications like Fantasy, Horror, Scifi, Literary, Mystery, and more. It also lists each publication’s professional ranking and how difficult it is to break in. Most of the publications listed here pride themselves on publishing work from unpublished writers.
Paying Freelance Publications: if you’re looking to publish articles instead of fiction, these 75 publications—listed on The Work at Home Woman—are looking for you. You’ll find a home for everything from blog posts to greeting cards, short stories, recipes, and travel writing.
Local Online and Print Magazines: don’t forget the publications in your own backyard. You’re more likely to know what’s important to the readers in your community when you live there too. If you’re from Bakersfield, these four publications will bring you up to eleven places to submit your writing: Bakersfield Californian letters to the editor, Bakersfield Life, Bakersfield Magazine, and Kern Business Journal. Pro tip: send a quick note through each site’s contact page to ask where to send your pitch ideas.
4 Simple Steps to Your First Publication
If you want to get published, you’ve got to submit your work. There’s no way around it, writer. So apply this easy strategy to ensure your publication success this year.
- Take a few minutes to pull all your finished writing, works in progress, story ideas, and articles you’d like to write into one place.
- Using the resources listed here, select 5-10 publications that match each one of your works or ideas. Keep this list of potential publications where you’ll see it every day.
- Send your work to the first publication on your list right now.
- When and if that first publication rejects the work (rejection happens and it’s okay!), send it immediately to the next publication on your list.
Apply this strategy to each of your works, and you’ll be way ahead of most writers. And with this recipe, you won’t be unpublished for long. Good luck!
Did I miss anything? Share it in the comments.
Mandy Wallace is a writing coach and blogger with a bachelor’s in English Lit and a few academic writing awards under her belt. She shares weekly writing tips and interviews with publishing experts on her website for new writers, which clocked over a half million page views last year. Get her weekly writing tips here.