158 Magazines That Pay For Short Stories

Looking for magazines that pay for short stories? You’re in the right place!

At Niche Pursuits, we’re big fans of “master lists.” We always want to provide the “ultimate guide” of something, especially if other people have compiled similar “complete lists.”

What can I say? We like to be first.

That’s why we’ve compiled the super-duper-ultimate-mega guide to magazines that pay for short stories. Not just “accepts” short stories, but pays for them.

And, in some cases, quite handsomely.

You’ll have to sort through the magazines that pay for short stories listed below to find a genre that matches your work, but once you do, it’s just a matter of getting it accepted. Accomplish that, and you’ll have earned the coveted title of “professional author.”

Without further ado, here is our guide on magazines that pay for short stories, in increasing order of payment.

Magazines That Pay For Short Stories: Up to $200 Per Short Story

Liquid Imagination

This magazine that specializes in fantasy, science fiction, poetry, slipstream or literary fiction accepts submissions up to 6,000 words.

Payment: $8 for flash fiction and $3 for stories less than 1000 words ($2 bonus if you agree to be paid via PayPal)

Eternal Haunted Summer

If you enjoy writing about pagan gods and goddesses, this is the magazine for you. No length requirement.

Payment: $5 (special feature pays $15)

The Antioch Review

As you would expect from one of America’s oldest continuously publishing literary magazines, The Antioch Review only accepts snail mail submissions. 

Payment: $20 per printed page

New Reader Magazine

Another one of the magazines that pay for short stories, this is an international magazine focusing on literary fiction. New Reader accepts “flash fiction,” and some works over 1000 words. 

Payment: $10 (over 1000 words is $20)

Gemini Magazine

Gemini Magazine runs a short fiction contest every year that offers a $1000 grand prize. Their tagline outlines what they’re looking for: “Fiction, poetry, a little craziness, and more!”

Payment: $20

Tales From Between

Horror, weird, goth, scary — whatever you call it, Tales From Between wants it. Stories are limited to 1000 words.

Payment: $20

Ruminate Magazine

Ruminate Magazine seeks to empower the spiritual side of life. They consider any submission that challenges readers to “embrace curiosity and discovery rather than resolution.” Word count per piece is 4,000 to 5,500 words.

Payment: $20 

The /tƐmz/ Review

This established literary magazine is also one of the magazines that pay for short stories. It’s always on the lookout for the next rising star, specifically stories of 10,000 words or less. The Review is primarily looking for anything that is “strange, experimental,” or “boundary-pushing.”

Payment: $20

Elevator Stories

This magazine is open to every type of fiction (except for erotica, fan fiction, and aphorisms), and requests works up to 1000 words. All they want is to be “entertained.”

Payment: $20

Bethlehem Writers’ Roundtable

Bethlehem is more traditionally-minded, with an emphasis on story-driven prose. Poetry is accepted as well.

Payment: $20

Contrary Magazine

As the title of the magazine indicates, Contrary accepts submissions that go against the grain. They consider anything they deem to be “rebellious,” especially those that challenge standard traditions. 

Payment: $20

The Vanishing Point

“Speculative fiction and nonfiction” are the focus of this magazine that pays for short stories, with submissions ranging from 1500-6000 words.

Payment: $25

Shades of Romance

Although they do not accept erotica, they consider any other kind of work, especially those including people of color. Fiction stories are common, but so are tips, tricks, and motivational nonfiction works as well. 

Payment: $25

Sundog Lit

In the midst of a dark world, Sundog seeks to be the light. This is one of the magazines that pay for short stories that accepts submissions twice a year (March-May and October-December) and they don’t accept any short stories above 3,000 words.

Payment: $25

Flash Frog

This magazine gets its name from the dart frog, and they like their stories to match its appearance: “small, brightly colored, and deadly.” Nothing over 1000 words is accepted.

Payment: $25

Gettysburg Review

One of the most prestigious literary magazines on this list, the Gettysburg Review pays per page. Get accepted, and you’ll join such luminaries as Rita Dove and Joyce Carol Oates.

Payment: $25 per printed page

Sepia Quarterly

Sepia runs anything between 100 to 5,000 words, and asks specifically for stories that will make you feel “hazy, or sepia-toned.”

Payment: $25

Archive of the Odd

Just about anything goes in this zany magazine of the obscure: sales papers, how-to guides, horror fiction, and “medication warning sheets.” Submissions are between 500-5,000 words.

Payment: $15-25

The Alphabet Box

Another one of the magazines that pay for short stories, this is a quarterly magazine focusing on original work: poetry, essays, and flash fiction, to name a few.

Payment: $25

Paper Lanterns

Focused primarily on young adults, Paper Lanterns is one of the British magazines that pay for short stories. Submissions can be on any topic.

Payment: €75

Black Telephone Magazine

Black Telephone is a magazine published by Clash Books, and wants emotional stories on “memory, love, death, and loss.” Submissions under 3000 words are accepted.

Payment: $25

Gordon Square Review

Only published twice a year, Gordon Square is another one of the magazines that pay for short stories. They collect short stories and poetry for their issues.

Payment: $25

Devil’s Party Press

Poems, short stories, and literary non-fiction works that focus on past, present, or future plots are accepted. Though the genre is broad, the word count is not: There’s a 5,000 word limit on all prose.

Payment: $25

Berkeley Fiction Review

The Review is published only once a year and only publishes pieces that add to the “ongoing cultural conversation.”

Payment: $25

The Blue Route

Blue Route looks primarily for “highly imaginative writing about contemporary life,” especially by undergraduate college students. 

Payment: $25

Breath and Shadow

Every magazine has its niche, and Breath and Shadow have found theirs by focusing on stories about people with disabilities. Original works up to 3000 words.

Payment: $30

Timeless Tales Magazine

Nursery rhymes have been popular for centuries, and Timeless Tales wants writers that can “breathe new life” into these classic stories. They accept shorter fiction works only (less than 2,000 words).

Payment: $30 

Mslexia

Though only open to women, Mslexia encourages a variety of fiction, poetry, and nonfiction contributions. 

Payment: £25

Baltimore Review

Claiming to be the “literary hub of diverse writing,” they accept virtually any kind of writing up to 5000 words. Regular competitions for cash prizes are also run from time to time.

Payment: $40

The Last Line

This magazine is unique. Editors will give possible last lines of stories, while writers create the work that precedes it. Two rules: only 5000 words are permitted, and the last line must be unaltered.

Payment: $20-$40

The Cincinnati Review

This academic literary journal is based at the University of Cincinnati. Submissions are only received three times a year (September, December, and May).

Payment: $25 per page for prose, and $30 per page for poetry

Shades of Romance

Shades of Romance looks for stories primarily about people of color, but will also include inspirational nonfiction (no erotica).

Payment: $25

SmokeLong

This literary magazine is on the lookout for language that has an interesting twist and surprises readers during the whole story. There is a hard limit of 1000 words, so be concise.

Payment: $50

The Antihumanist

In their own words, The Antihumanist believes that “by confronting the bare-bones of reality we can understand our place in the world.” Flash fiction works of less than a thousand words are considered for publication.

Payment: $0.05 per word

Synthetic Reality

Synthetic Reality is aimed primarily at unpublished authors who specialize in science fiction, fantasy, horror, and surreal fiction. Each story has a hard limit of 5000 words.

Payment: $0.01 per word

Orchard

Orchard is not genre-specific but features dark and intense pieces that cut straight to the soul. Anything that is “scary, disturbing, unsettling, and sad” will be considered for publication.

Payment: $50

Split Lip Magazine

Just about anything goes with this magazine: flash fiction, poetry, and memoirs. The only thing they ask is that it has a pop culture twist.

Payment: $50 per online post, five dollars per printed page

Lost Colony Magazine

Lost Colony accepts stories that are a little bit longer than others on this list (10,000-25,000 words), and prefers science fiction and fantasy.

Payment: $50

Enchanted Conversation

You don’t have to write the next Little Red Riding Hood, but Enchanted Conversation would love it if you did. All fairytale-inspired stories of up to 1000 words are accepted.

Payment: $50

Gothic

Gothic accepts traditional horror stories, but also reviews, feature articles, and news that are related to the genre. Submissions must be between 2000 and 10,000 words.

Payment: $60

Dark Moon Digest

One of the more popular outlets for traditional horror writing, Dark Moon Digest also accepts reprints from other publications. Published quarterly, all stories must be between 1500 and 7000 words.

Payment: $0.03 for original works, $0.01 for reprints

Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores

If you’ve never been published before, this is a good one to start with. Focusing primarily on “intelligent stories” that are related to science fiction and fairytales, they also accept anything in the “Eldritch” sub-niche. Only flash fiction of less than a thousand words, though.

Payment: $0.08 per word

Flash Fiction Online

Concise, gripping, and satisfying — those are the words that Flash Fiction Online uses to describe what they’re looking for. Speculative fiction is their main genre, but they also accept literary fiction.

Payment: $80

Abyss and Apex

Abyss and Apex prefers their stories to be highly emotional, character-driven, and most of all, memorable. Submissions up to 10,000 words are accepted and encouraged.

Payment: $80

Heroic Fantasy Quarterly

This quarterly magazine is dedicated to both fiction and poetry, as long as it has to do with heroic fiction. Typically, each story needs to be less than 10,000 words, but they’ll accept serialized short stories up to 50,000 words in total.

Payment: $25 up to a thousand words. $50 between 1005 and 5,000 words. $75 for stories between 5,000 and 7,500 words. $100 for stories over 7500 words.

Kaleidoscope Magazine

Kaleidoscope is a magazine with a purpose. All their short stories of less than 5000 words should challenge traditional stereotypes and condescending attitudes about disabilities.

Payment: $10-$100 per piece

The Common

Based out of Amherst College, The Common is one of the more prestigious print and digital literary journals still in circulation. All submissions must be less than 10,000 words, but can be both nonfiction or fiction stories.

Payment: $100 per piece, but they also charge a $3 submission fee

midnight and indigo

This literary magazine celebrates women writers of color, but all demographics are encouraged to submit their short stories (provided they fit that demographic). All stories must be at least 1500 words.

Payment: $50 for online publications, $100 for print

Belmont Story Review

Belmont Story Review is one of the younger magazines on this list (the first issue was in 2016), but its spiritual theme is as old as time. They want their writers to push the boundaries of the human experience through eclectic storytelling, finding the intersection between faith and culture.

Payment: $100

Unfit Magazine

As the name implies, Unfit Magazine wants original ideas that are sci-fi based. There is also a hard cap of 10,000 words.

Payment: $0.25 per word for the first thousand words, then switches to $0.01 per word after that.

Newfound

Newfound is open to any story that explores how places shape your viewpoint of the world. Issues are regularly centered around a specific theme, so make sure you do your research before submitting your story.

Payment: $25-$100

The Offing

This online literary journal accepts just about anything you can imagine: art, memoirs, translations, and even comics.

Payment: $25-$100 per story

Healthy Mummy

Healthy Mummy is all about transformation, which includes anything related to health, pregnancy, meal prep, and even difficulties in your life. If you have pictures that can accompany this transformation, even better.

Payment: $100

Giganotosaurus

If you have a hard time keeping your story short, this is the magazine for you. They accept sci-fi and fantasy stories up to 25,000 words, but still encourage you to keep it concise where possible.

Payment: $100

Abbey Review

Abbey Review is agnostic about the genre, but what they do care about is that it’s the best work you can possibly produce. There’s a 300 word minimum on all stories and a 30-page maximum.

Payment: $30 per story, with a $70 bonus if your story is judged to be the best in the issue

Carve

This magazine strives for “good honest fiction” that describes some kind of emotional jeopardy. It doesn’t have to be personal to your life, but the reader needs to feel connected to the author in some way.

Payment: $100

Three-Lobed Burning Eye

Although Three-Lobed Burning Eye claims to be focused on only fantasy submissions, they also publish horror and science fiction. Works up to 7500 words are considered, or flash fiction stories up to 1000 words.

Payment: $100

Reader’s Digest

Arguably one of the most famous magazines of all time, Reader’s Digest is looking for true stories about you in less than 100 words. Every word counts!

Payment: $100

Highlights Magazine

Targeted mainly towards kids, Highlights is a general interest magazine that pays for both fiction and nonfiction stories. At the time of this writing, they are currently closed for submissions, but it’s worth bookmarking for the future.

Payment: $175

Bourbon Penn

If your story is odd or extremely creative, Bourbon Penn wants to see it. Ideally, your story would fall between 2000-7000 words and cross into other genres, creating a truly unique piece.

Payment: $0.02

Moss

The genre doesn’t matter for Moss, but your location does. Whether you live in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, British Columbia, or you just have a connection to the area, you should submit your work of at least 1800 words here.

Payment: $125

New Southern Fugitives

Although submissions are currently closed at the time of this writing, New Southern Fugitives is another one of the magazines that pay for short stories. It’s open to all types of themes and genres, especially those from minority authors. 5000 words maximum per piece.

Payment: $15 per page, with a maximum of $105

Daily Science Fiction

The name may have science fiction in the title, but this is one of the magazines that pay for short stories that publishes fantasy in every genre. It’s also a perfect choice for newer authors seeking to establish themselves, since they publish online and send out regular emails. Flash fiction up to 1500 words is considered.

Payment: $0.08 per word

Lamp Light

Lamp Light is a dark magazine by design. They advertise openly that they’re looking for the “creepy, weird, and unsettling,” so if your story fits that theme you’re welcome to submit it for consideration.

Payment: $0.03 per word

Translunar Traveler’s Lounge

Translunar Traveler’s Lounge is lighthearted and fun, and they want their stories to match. Science fiction and fantasy tales of up to 5000 words are considered.

Payment: $0.03 per word

The No Sleep Podcast

Although you won’t see your work in print here, if accepted, your short story will be performed on their podcast by a professional actor. They’re on the lookout for short stories between 1200 and 2500 words that are genuinely horrifying.

Payment: $125

The Best New True Crime Stories

Any nonfiction true crime accounts – especially those of the rich and famous — are welcome here. All stories must be between 4000 and 7000 words.

Payment: $130

Cosmic Horror Monthly

Stories for Cosmic Horror Monthly need to be less than 7500 words but can be anything that applies to “dark science fiction” stories. If you’re an artist, original work in that genre is accepted as well.

Payment: $0.03 per word

Chicken Soup for the Soul

Since there are dozens of Chicken Soup books in production at any one point in time, inspirational, true stories of any genre are accepted. The stories have to be personal, emotional, and usually impart some life lesson. Submissions also have to be less than 1200 words.

Payment: $200

Planet Scumm

Flash fiction stories, or those at least less than 5000 words, and the science fiction genre are considered for publication in this magazine. Even those identifying as hard sci-fi, weird fiction, and slipstream are considered.

Payment: $0.04 per word

Nashville Review

Nashville Review only publishes three times a year, but wants any kind of work that classifies as a “moving work of art.” Lyrics, narratives, minimalism — it doesn’t matter, they want it all. Short stories are less than 8000 words, flash fiction is less than 1000.

Payment $100

Aftermath Online Magazine

If you’re interested in writing something on the current ecological and climate situation, Aftermath Online Magazine is another one of the magazines that pay for short stories. Of particular interest are stories that talk about the potential long-term impact on environmental issues.

Payment: $0.02 per word

Bennington Review

Bennington Review expressly states that they’re looking for short stories under six pages that are both “graceful and reckless.” Both nonfiction and fiction are considered.

Payment: $100-$200

Craft Literary

Rather than a short fiction story, Craft Literary wants pieces that discuss the craft of writing itself. Interviews, republished works, and advice are published regularly, up to 6000 words.

Payment: $100-$200

Uncharted

Exploration is the name of the game with Uncharted. They want anything that stirs the imagination to explore new worlds or discusses the future of technology and science, up to 5000 words.

Payment $200

Master’s Review

The Master’s Review is specifically targeted to new and emerging authors who are unpublished. Flash fiction of stories less than a thousand words, or narrative nonfiction up to 7000 words are preferred.

Payment: $100-$200

Magazines That Pay For Short Stories: Up to $1000 Per Short Story

Uncanny

This online magazine that deals primarily with the sci-fi and fantasy genre is after “gorgeous pros, verve, and imagination that elicit strong emotions and challenge beliefs.” If that defines you, submit your story of 6000 words or less.

Payment: $0.10 per word

The Southampton Review

The Southampton Review is open to all forms of writing – prose, poetry, illustration, and our portfolios. Flash fiction is also accepted, but regular short stories have a 7500 word limit.

Payment: $100 for prose, $75 per poem, $100 per illustrated page, and $200 for up to 12 illustrated images

Escape Pod

All stories submitted to this sci-fi magazine must focus on science, technology, future projections, alternate history and how all these things intersect with people. Content must not be adult-themed and must be less than 7500 words.

Payment: $0.08 per word, and $100 for reprints

Pseudopod

Although anyone can submit a story to Pseudopod, stories for minorities are particularly welcome. All submissions must be less than 6000 words, and be in the horror and weird genre.

Payment: $0.08 per word. $100 for reprints. $20 for reprinted flash fiction.

Cast of Wonders

Cast of Wonders targets the 12-17 age range, and include stories that “evoke a strong sense of wonder” about the world around them. No adult themes; only short stories up to 6000 words.

Payment: $0.08 per word

Podcastle

This magazine is open to all sub-genres in the fantasy category, but all content must be somewhat realistic or meaningful to the story. Submissions up to 6000 words are considered.

Payment: $0.06 per word

Strange Horizons

Strange Horizons wants primarily speculative fiction, but how that term is defined is somewhat ambiguous. They prefer short stories under 5000 words, but will accept longer narratives up to 10,000 words.

Payment: $0.08 per word

Apex Magazine

Apex wants stories in the science fiction, fantasy, and horror genre, and published only in their online blog. They also have a podcast, which will pay extra if your story is featured there.

Payment: $0.08 per word

One Story

As the name implies, One Story only publishes one story every three weeks. They don’t really care what type of story it is, as long as it’s “really good.”

Payment: $500

One Teen Story

One Teen Story is the young adult version of One Story. They publish less frequently — every four months — and accept submissions only from teenage writers (13 to 19 years old).

Payment: $500

Terraform

Although Terraform fits into the science fiction genre, they’re primarily looking for near-future fiction works of up to 2000 words.

Payment: $0.02 per word

The Dark

The Dark specifically asks their writers to experiment with the horror genre and deviate from the ordinary. Graphic and violent horror are not accepted, but original works of up to 6000 words are considered.

Payment: $0.06 per word

Nightmare Magazine

Nightmare Magazine is published by best-selling author John Joseph Adams. He accepts virtually anything in the horror and dark fantasy genre, up to 7500 words.

Payment: $0.08 per word

Adventures in Odyssey Clubhouse

This Christian-based magazine highlights kids doing exceptional things, as well as activities, humor, and interviews with noteworthy individuals. Stories should be less than 1,000 words total.

Payment: $150-$200

AGNI

Another magazine that gives new writers an opportunity to be published, AGNI wants pieces that resist ideas about the limits of writing. Both poetry and prose are accepted.

Payment: $20 per printed page. $40 per page for poetry. Maximum of $300 total.

Apparitions Literary Magazine

The title of this magazine suggests that it’s in the supernatural genre, but they specify also that they want works that have “enough emotional heft to break a heart.” Only works that have prose “as delicious as broth” and are less than 5000 words are considered.

Payment: $0.05 per word

The Dread Machine

Cyberpunk, slipstream, speculative and dark fiction, as well as regular science fiction are considered. Reprints and original works up to 7000 words.

Payment: $0.03 for original works. $0.01 for reprints

Existere Journal of Arts and Literature

Published twice a year by York University, Existere accepts submissions from virtually any genre up to 3500 words. 

Payment: $50-$250 per story

Threepenny Review

Threepenny Review is a very distinguished magazine that is looking for well-written short fiction up to 4000 words.

Payment $400

Khōréō

This is a new journal targeting primarily immigrants, or those that are members of the Diaspora. If you find yourself in the demographic, submit your story of less than 5000 words that contain a “speculative moment.”

Payment: $0.08 per word

Black Static

Part of a long-established horror magazine, Black Static allows for short fiction up to 10,000 words.

Payment: $0.05

Boneyard Soup Magazine

While some magazines look like they were done in their parents’ basement, Boneyard Soup has exceptional production value. They accept submissions up to 6000 words of all or sub-genres, with the exception of gratuitous violence and sexual content.

Payment: $0.05 per word

Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine

With Hitchcock’s name attached to it, you know this magazine is going to be prestigious. They accept short-form crime and mystery fiction submissions of up to 12,000 words.

Payment: $0.05-$0.08 per word

Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine

Put together by the same publisher as Hitchcock’s, this mystery magazine also specializes in short-form crime fiction. The word limit is slightly less, though; most submissions are between 2500 to 8000 words.

Payment: $0.08 per word

Bear Deluxe

Eschewing traditional sci-fi, romance, and action stories in favor of adventure, mystery and westerns, this environmental arts magazine accepts pieces of 4000 words or less.

Payment: $25-$400 per story

Confrontation

Confrontation is a twice-yearly literary magazine that focuses on philosophical and experiential fiction, alongside novel excerpts. Any submission less than 7200 words is considered.

Payment: $175-$250 per story

Zoetrope: All-Story

Have your short story published in Zoetrope, and you’ll find yourself in exclusive company. This magazine openly advertises that they’re only looking for “the best of contemporary short fiction,” and only allows you to be published twice in the same year. If you think you have what it takes, submit your short story of 7000 words or less.

Payment: $1000 per piece

Fireside

This magazine is an advocate for authors. Not only do they pay their writers well, they also only publish the best submissions they can find. Their submission periods are short, so pay attention to the calendar. There’s a limit of 5000 words per story.

Payment: $.125 per word

Flame Tree Press

Flame Tree Press is another science fiction magazine that pays for submissions between 2000 and 4000 words. Longer works are acceptable provided they are “compelling” enough.

Payment: $0.08 per word for original works. $0.06 per word for reprints.

Arc Manor Books: The Reinvented Detective Anthology

Arc Manor seeks not only to entertain but also to teach. Their detective stories encourage you to develop your own detection skills that you can apply in everyday life. Who knows? Maybe something you read will save your life. Average submissions are 1500 to 5000 words.

Payment: $.08 per word

Adi Magazine: Political Fictions

If your life is been affected by politics in a unique way, Adi wants to hear from you. They focus on the individual, also examining how personalities and lives have been impacted through external conflicts. Full-length stories of 2500 words are accepted, or flash fiction up to a hundred thousand words.

Payment: $500 for full-length stories, $200 for flash fiction

Horror That Represents You

Another magazine that is an advocate for new authors is Horror That Represents You. Their rates are above average, and they publish short stories in the horror genre of 1000-7000 words. As an added bonus, they also accept simultaneous submissions.

Payment: $0.11 per word

DreamForge Magazine

DreamForge is technically a science fiction and fantasy magazine, but they specialize in stories that demonstrate the power of the human spirit. Characters that overcome unique obstacles are especially appealing to their editors. Works between 2500-3750 words are considered.

Payment: $0.06 per word. $0.03 for reprints.

Escape Artists

Possibly one of the more unique magazines on this list, Escape Artists is accepting submissions for CatsCast. Stories about cats — on this planet or somewhere else — are accepted, so feel free to be as creative as you want. 6000-word maximum on words.

Payment: $0.08 per word, $100 for reprints, $20 for flash fiction reprints

Zizzle

Zizzle is interested primarily in stories for a younger audience, but can also appeal to older people as well. Fiction that surprises, moves, and amuses children of all ages are encouraged.

Payment: $250 per short story, $100 for flash fiction

The Deadlands

Meditating upon death may not be your cup of tea, but for writers who like to speculate on what happens in the next life, The Deadlands is your jam. Fiction of up to 5000 words, poems, and nonfiction pieces of any length are considered.

Payment: $0.10 per story, $50 per poem, and $100 per nonfiction work

Believer Magazine

Believer takes everyday stories that seem innocuous on the surface and opens them up to reveal their deeper meeting. Investigative works on everyday activities are par for the course. Feature stories are between 4000-8000 words.

Payment: $1000

Narrative Magazine

This is a nonprofit magazine that offers its issues for free and includes fiction, nonfiction, and short stories on a variety of topics. In addition to payment per work, they also offer an annual prize of $4000 for the best short story, excerpt, poem or nonfiction.

Payment: $150-$350 for 2000-word stories, $300-$1000 for 15,000-word manuscripts

VQR

VQR has a long history of empowering new authors as well as highlighting award-winning authors and their pages. Submissions are only open a few times during the year, and genre fiction is usually not considered. Maximum length of 8000 words per piece.

Payment: $1000 for print pieces, $100-$200 if online only

Creative Nonfiction

Just as the name states, Creative Nonfiction is only interested in narratives that blend style with substance to tell the reader something new about the world.

Payment: $750 upon publication

Black Warrior Review

The University of Alabama publishes this magazine twice a year and prefers contemporary fiction. Included pieces oftentimes embrace diversity and experimentation, often over works that are simply grammatically correct and more traditional. Pieces should not exceed 7000 words.

Payment: $100-$220 per story

Boulevard

Any kind of writing is considered in Boulevard: contemporary short stories, poetry, and essays. Genre fiction is generally discouraged, and new writers are often given priority over more established authors.

Payment: $100-$300 for prose, $25-$250 for poetry

The Iowa Review

The University of Iowa has one of the most prestigious writing programs in the country, and the Iowa Review is one of the reasons why. This journal has been around since 1970 and specializes in all writing styles, including poetry. It’s published three times a year and submissions for each magazine are only accepted in the fall.

Payment: $0.80 per word, with a $100 minimum payment

Fantasy Magazine

Fantasy Magazine has been around for a while and is still one of the most respected publishers in the fantasy genre. The word limit is 7500 for short stories, and 1500 words for flash fiction.

Payment: $0.08 per word

Magazines That Pay For Short Stories: More Than $1000 Per Short Story

Beneath Ceaseless Skies

Beneath Ceaseless Skies’ definition of “short stories” is different than others. The max word count for their adventure fantasy stories is 15,000 words.

Payment: $0.08 per word

Fantasy and Science Fiction

No surprise here that a magazine titled Fantasy and Science Fiction is interested in, you guessed it, fantasy and science fiction. They accept submissions of up to 25,000 words and are also interested in receiving stories that are more humorous.

Payment: $0.08-$0.12 per word

Cricket Magazine

This literary journal includes nonfiction, short stories, poetry, and is marketed directly towards kids. Because of that, there’s also an activity section. The word limit is 1800, but they sometimes accept serialized stories of up to 6000 words.

Payment: $0.25 per word

The Sun

Two things that make The Sun stand out are the fact that they’re ad-free, and that they are particularly interested in works from writers of color. Every genre is accepted, as long as they “evoke the splendor and heartache of being human.”

Payment: $2000 per piece

Clarkesworld

Clarkesworld is another entry into the science fiction and fantasy genre but accepts works up to 22,000 words in length.

Payment: $0.12 per word

Asimov’s Science Fiction

This magazine is looking primarily for character-oriented stories that are accessible and thoughtful at the same time. They don’t serialize short stories but do accept short stories up to 20,000 words in length.

Payment: $0.08-$0.10 per word

Analog

Contrary to Asimov’s, this magazine is interested primarily in the technology behind the stories instead of the characters. Short fiction of up to 20,000 words is accepted, as are serials and fact articles, alongside poetry.

Payment: $0.08-$0.10 per word for short fiction, six cents per word for longer stories, nine cents per word for fact articles, and one dollar per line for poetry.

Gray’s Sporting Journal

Gray’s Sporting Journal only accepts writing that is irreproachable but also pays one of the highest rates per word in the market. Be sure to bring your A game if you’re interested in getting published here.

Payment: $600-$1250 for short stories up to 1500 words

Cossmass Infinities

Once an exclusive magazine to only certain minorities, Cossmass now accepts submissions in science fiction and fantasy from everyone. Their short stories are up to 7500 words, while novels can reach 17,000 words.

Payment: $0.08 per word

Choice of Games

Although you may have to be a more established writer to get published here, Choice of Games offers a unique pay structure for their interactive fiction. First, you submit an outline, then the second chapter, and then again for the first 10,000 words of the story.

Payment: $500 for the outline, $1000 for the first chapter, an additional $1000 for the first 10,000 words

Cicada Magazine

The tagline for this magazine says “there’s room in the world for your dark weird truths.” Considering that this is a young adult magazine that has a largely teen audience, that leaves prospective writers with pretty ambiguous requirements. They consider works up to 9000 words.

Payment: $0.25 per word, with a maximum of $2250

Tor

Tor argues that their main genre is speculative fiction, but according to them, that includes fantasy, sci-fi, alternative histories, and horror. Any work in those genres is limited to 10,000 words.

Payment: $2000

Chiral Mad 4

Instead of simply writing a single article, submissions to Chiral Mad 4 are collaborative anthologies intended to “create something new.” Combined, the story must add up to 20,000 words.

Payment: six cents per word, split among each author

Gay

A magazine published by Roxanne Gay, submissions are required to be thoughtful, clever, and beautiful. Personal essays and cultural criticism are also encouraged, but provocative pieces must have a clear purpose in mind. Maximum word count of 3500 per piece.

Payment: $1 per word

The Missouri Review

The Missouri Review publishes four times a year and encourages new writers to submit manuscripts up to 12,000 words, or flash fiction of 2000 words or less. The William Peden Prize is also awarded annually to the best fiction piece of the previous year.

Payment: $40 per printed page. William Peden Prize is $1000

New England Review

Genre doesn’t matter to the New England Review; short stories, novellas, novel excerpts, and even translations are considered. The word limit is 20,000, with flash fiction staying under 1000 words.

Payment: $20 per printed page

Magazines That Pay For Short Stories With Unknown Pay

Harper’s Magazine

A magazine with a reputation all its own, Harper’s publishes provocative pieces on contemporary issues.

Payment: Unpublished

The New Yorker

It’s extremely rare to be published by The New Yorker, but if you are, it can single-handedly launch your career. They accept unsolicited submissions of all short stories, but only accept a fraction.

Payment: Unpublished

A&U

A&U is a nonprofit magazine that addresses issues surrounding AIDS. Short stories, poetry, and narrative nonfiction works are included.

Payment: Unpublished

The Copperfield Review

Editors at The Copperfield Review are interested in literary historical fiction of the highest quality. Submissions are always accepted, but there’s a hard limit of 3000 words per piece.

Payment: Unpublished

Hypertext Magazine

This magazine is very author-friendly and another one of the magazines that pay for short stories. It considers most works of fiction and nonfiction. Both genres must be under 3000 words, but they also accept multiple submissions of lower amounts, (provided they meet the 3000-word limit).

Payment: Unpublished

Woman’s Weekly

For romance fiction, it’s hard to get more prestigious than Woman’s Weekly. This is a weekly magazine that solicits stories less than 2000 words or serials that appear in fortified parts of 3400 words each. Patient specials have different length requirements and are published monthly.

Payment: Unpublished

Yours Magazine

Yours doesn’t have a strict genre requirement, but they do encourage writers to stay away from stereotypical tropes. Submissions are 950 words each, but serialized works over three issues can be up to 3000 words long in total.

Payment: Unpublished

The People’s Friend

Advertised as “the world’s longest-running women’s magazine,” The People’s Friend puts out an incredible amount of material. Short stories are usually less than 3000 words, though some can approach 10,000.

Payment: Unpublished

Portland Monthly

Portland Monthly accepts primary romance novels, but the quality must be top-notch.

Payment: Unpublished

Cosmopolitan

It’s hard to walk through the magazine section without seeing an issue of Cosmopolitan. Though primarily nonfiction in nature, they do occasionally run short stories and excerpts. They don’t accept manuscripts but do encourage a short pitch that is both irresistible and professional.

Payment: Unpublished

Guideposts

A Christian magazine that publishes fictionalized “true stories” — think parables in the Bible — Guideposts also allows for romance stories. Works of 1500 words or less are considered.

Payment: Unpublished

Lightspeed

This magazine in the science fiction and fantasy genre puts a premium on original works that “take chances” with fiction. According to them, no subject is off-limits.

Payment: $0.08 per word, but word limit is unknown

Heroes and Heartbreakers

This magazine is an imprint of McMillan publishing house, and accepts short stories of up to 30,000 words. They operate like traditional publishing houses will, paying per piece against royalties.

Payment: $1000-$2000 in advance, against a 25% royalty

Unidentified Funny Objects

Even though the name is humorous, Unidentified Funny Objects has published huge literary names in the sci-fi and fantasy world, including Neil Gaiman and George R.R. Martin. It’s not good enough just to be a great writer, though. This magazine expects their works to be slightly humorous as well.

Payment: $0.10 per word, word limit unknown

Particular Passages

Submitting your work to Particular Passages shouldn’t necessarily be seen as a last resort, but it’s perfect if you’re not sure what genre your story fits in.

Payment: royalties

The Great Void

This magazine consists of speculative fiction that is on the subject of mythology. There are two types of publications: website-only with works up to 15,000 words, and anthologies up to 2000 words.

Payment: No payment for website stories, payment for anthologies is 40% net profit divided amongst the writers

Dragon Soul Press

The content for Dragon Soul Press changes depending on the issue, but they accept submissions up to 15,000 words.

Payment: Royalties

The Rumpus

The main appeal for The Rumpus is that it gives newer writers a chance to be featured alongside established authors. They also, according to their own website, “strive to be a platform for marginalized voices.”

Payment: $300 split between contributors

Neon Hemlock Press

I’m still not sure what Neon Hemlock Press is all about, but it has something to do with the darker side of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. Featured stories describe extensions and perversions of humanity.

Payment: $0.08 per word, word count unknown

American Short Fiction

American Short Fiction advertises that they publish short fiction by some of the best writers in contemporary literature, regardless of experience level. Short stories under 2000 words are accepted.

Payment: Unpublished

East of the Web

This is another one of the magazines that pay for short stories. No genre is rejected here, provided that it has some kind of romance element (except for children’s stories). Reprints are also accepted.

Payment: five cents per word, word limit unknown

Levee Magazine

Multiple genres are accepted, specifically those within a few fantasy sub-genres: surrealism and magical realism, primarily. Literary fiction and environmental writing are also considered. Word count of 8000 words or less.

Payment: Unpublished

Conclusion

We hope that one (or more!) of these magazines that pay for short stories will be the perfect fit for you. And if they aren’t, you may even consider starting your own magazine! If that interests you, check out our guide on how to start an online magazine.

If you’re here, you most likely love writing and want to get paid for it. Makes sense! Many writers have found Holly Johnson’s Earn More Writing course to be helpful in boosting their income from their writing career.

She also offers a free workshop entitled, “How to Build a Six-Figure Writing Career.” If you’re interested in learning more about it, check out the link below. Happy writing!

Check Out the Free Earn More Writing Workshop

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