Literary Magazines That Publish Essays

Written by S. Kalekar | September 18, 2017

Several prestigious literary magazines have opened their reading periods for submissions. This list has a mix of well-known and little-known or new magazines that welcome creative non-fiction: memoir, personal essays, lyrical essays and more.

There are some themed calls: about community, mental health, candy, Canadian women and the vote and Indigenous writers, writing related to womanhood, environmental justice and on contemporary themes.

Several also accept fiction, poetry and translations.

Many of these pay writers; apart from cash and contributor copies, some also give magazine subscriptions.

Reckoning

This is an annual journal of writing on environmental justice. They want essays that are more creative than journalistic, as well as fiction (at least a bit speculative) and poetry; work that is a personal, visceral understanding of the world and the people in it as it has been, as it will be and as it could be, as a consequence of humanity’s relationship with earth. They particularly welcome work from Indigenous writers, writers of color, queer and transgender writers. Query for reprints.
Deadline: 22 September 2017
Length: Up to 45,000 words; for poetry, send multiple short or one long
Pay: $0.06/word for prose; $20/page for poetry
Details here.

Tin House: Candy

The theme for their Spring 2018 print issue is Candy – what is the sweet thing you crave that also may be ruining your life? They are also reading for their unthemed Summer 2018 issue, and accept non-fiction, fiction and poetry.
Deadline: 30 September 2017
Length: Up to 10,000 words of prose and up to 5 poems for print; various for online
Pay: Unspecified for print, none for online content
Details here.

Nashville Review

They accept creative non-fiction, fiction, translations and poetry, and publish both established and emerging writers.
Deadline: 30 September 2017
Length: Up to 8,000 words for prose; 3 poems of up to 8 pages
Pay: $100 for prose; $25 per poem or song selection
Details here.

Buddy

This is a new zine that publishes writing about mental health (MH). They accept poetry, fiction and creative non-fiction. They want work that is anti-stigma, innovative or comical, and writing from those with and without MH diagnosis.
Deadline: 30 September 2017
Length: Up to 3 poems (2 pages per poem); up to 5 pages of prose
Pay: None
Details here.

Gordon Square Review

They want non-fiction, fiction and poetry for their inaugural issue. They welcome writing from women, writers of color, writers with disability, LGBTQ writers, and previously unpublished writers. See guidelines for their preferred aesthetic, and editorial mentorship details.
Deadline: 15 October 2017
Length: One prose piece of 5,000 words or three pieces of up to 1,000 words each; up to three poems
Pay: $25 for prose, $10 for poetry
Details here.

Ninth Letter: Community

They publish non-fiction, fiction and poetry, and want both experimental and traditional writing. For the web edition, the theme is Community.
Deadline: 5 November 2017 for the web edition; 30 November 2017 for fiction and 28 February 2018 for essays and poetry, for the print edition
Length: up to 3,500 words for prose and up to 3 poems for the web; non-fiction or fiction of up to 8,000 words, 3-6 poems (max 10 pages) for the print magazine
Pay: $75 per story or essay and $25 per poem for the web; $25/page for the print edition
Details here.

Ducts

They want personal stories and welcome both new and established writers, and seek original perspectives on both common and uncommon topics. They publish essays, memoir, humor, fiction and poetry.
Deadline: 15 November 2017
Length: Varies for each section; see guidelines
Pay: $20
Details here.

Baltimore Review

There is no fee to submit creative non-fiction for their regular, non-themed submissions. They regularly nominate work for prizes. See the editors’ tips to writers for their preferences.
Deadline: 30 November 2017
Length: Up to 5,000 words
Pay: $40 Amazon gift certificate or via PayPal
Details here.

The Iowa Review

They publish all kinds of creative non-fiction, including personal and lyric essays, memoirs and literary journalism. Submissions may be one long piece or multiple short pieces. They also publish poetry, fiction and translations. Mailed submissions are not charged.
Deadline: 1 December 2017
Length: Up to 25 pages of prose and 8 pages of poetry
Pay: $0.08/word for prose ($100 minimum); $1.50/line for poetry ($40 minimum)
Details here.

Prairie Fire: two themed calls

Their current submission calls are for Canadian Indigenous Writers (where they also call for experimental work), and for Canadian Women and the Vote 1918-2018.
Deadline: 1 December 2017 for Canadian Women and the Vote; 15 December 2017 for Indigenous Writers
Length: Up to 5,000 words; up to three poems, no more than 10 pages
Pay: CAD0.10/word, up to CAD250 for prose; CAD40/poem
Details here.

The Southern Review

They publish essays, including creative non-fiction and literary essays, as well as fiction and poetry. Submission fee will be waived during University Press Week, 6-11 November 2017. There is no fee for mailed submissions.
Deadline: 1 December 2017 for non-fiction and fiction; 1 February 2018 for poetry (postmarked)
Length: Up to 8,000 words for prose; up to 5 poems or 15 pages
Pay: $25 per printed page, up to $200
Details here.

The New Quarterly

They publish non-fiction that explores both the craft and the writing life. They also publish fiction and poetry. They have a range of regular features on the writing life, and their non-fiction is a mix of creative writing, researched essays and discussions. Their writers have been cited for major literary prizes, including the Man Booker and the Journey Prize.
Deadline: 28 February 2018
Length: Up to 6,000 words for prose; up to 3 poems or postscript stories
Pay: CAD250 per prose piece; CAD40 per poem or postscript story
Details here.

Copper Nickel

They publish essays, fiction and poetry, as well as translation folios.
Deadline: 15 March 2018
Length: Unspecified for prose; 4-6 poems
Pay: $30/page for 2017; two editor prizes of $500 each for poetry and prose per issue
Details here.

West Branch

Apart from creative non-fiction, they also publish fiction, poetry and translations.
Deadline: 1 April 2018
Length: Up to 30 pages of prose; up to 6 poems
Pay: $50 per poem, $0.05/word for prose, with a maximum of $100
Details here.

Colorado Review

They want short fiction and essays with contemporary themes (no genre fiction or literary criticism), and consider poems of any style. They do not charge a fee for mailed submissions.
Deadline: Rolling for non-fiction; up to 30 April 2018 for fiction and poetry
Length: 15-25 pages of prose; up to 5 poems
Pay: $200 for short stories and essays; $10 per page for poetry
Details here.

Agni

This journal has published important new writers early in their careers, and they also publish fiction, translations and poetry. They pay the same rates for web and print editions.
Deadline: 31 May 2018
Length: One story, essay or 5 poems at a time; no word limits
Pay: $10/page for prose, $20/page of poetry, $150 maximum
Details here.

Counterclock

They want work that is raw, honest, intimate and vulnerable for their first issue. They publish non-fiction, fiction, cross-genre work and poetry, including short videos of performance poetry.
Deadline: Now open
Length: Up to 6,000 words for prose; up to 5 pages of poetry Pay: None
Details here.

the Same

This is a literary journal by women, for women. They want topics related to womanhood, and accept non-fiction, fiction and poetry.  Deadline: Now open
Length: 1,000-3,000 words for non-fiction; up to 4,000 words for fiction; no line limits for poetry
Pay: None
Details here.

Ember

They accept creative non-fiction (not essays), fiction and poetry suitable for all age groups. Submission by writers aged 10-18 are strongly encouraged.
Deadline: Unspecified
Length: 400-12,000 words for prose; 500-1,500 for flash fiction; 3-100 lines for poetry, up to three poems
Pay: $0.02/word or $20 for the work, whichever is more
Details here.

filling Station

They publish critical and creative non-fiction, fiction and poetry. They like innovative work.

Deadline: Unspecified
Length: Up to 12 pages of non-fiction; 10 pages of fiction; 6 pages of poetry
Pay: CAD25
Details here.

Creative Nonfiction: True Story

Each issue of True Story, a new monthly magazine from Creative Nonfiction magazine, will feature one work of creative non-fiction. There is no fee for mailed submissions.
Deadline: Ongoing
Length: 5,000-10,000 words
Pay: $300
Details here.

 

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    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction

    Subgenres: Commercial Fiction, Feminist, Fiction, Flash Fiction, Historical, Humor, Literary Fiction, Love, Poetry, Prose Poetry

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    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry

    We prefer poems with these qualities: image, subtlety, and point of view; a surface of worldly exactitude, as well as a depth of semantic ambiguity; and a voice that negotiates with its body of predecessors. Before submitting,...

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  • 3Elements Literary Review

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    3Elements Literary Review is a quarterly, online literary journal founded in Chicago in 2013, now based in Des Moines, IA. We publish fiction, nonfiction, poetry, art, and photography. Each issue begins with the posting of three elements, and...

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  • 5x5 Literary Magazine

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    5×5, which borrows its title from the concept of clear radio transmission, is an online literary magazine that aims to publish both established and emerging writers of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction that is of no more than 500 words in length....

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  • 32 Poems

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry

    At 32 Poems our bias is for inventive language complicated by music, form, and feeling. As a rule we publish shorter work that can fit on a single page (32 lines or less), but we sometimes make exceptions to accommodate particularly exciting...

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  • 34THPARALLEL INDIE LITMAG DIGITAL & PRINT

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    Subgenres: Autobiography/Memoir, Experimental, Graphic/Illustrated, Literary Fiction, Love, Narrative Nonfiction, Pop Culture, Prose Poetry

    It's all about getting your story out there looking good. This mag’s fans can be your fans too!!
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    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry

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    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Creative Nonfiction, Fiction

    95Notes is a platform designed to showcase quality creative writing and artwork. 95Notes is an independent literary magazine started by Chicago State University writers to represent creative writers within their literary community.
    All...

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  • 100 Word Story

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Fiction

    Subgenres: Autobiography/Memoir, Experimental, Prose Poetry, Narrative Nonfiction

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    Reading Period: Oct 15 to Dec 15

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    TRANSCENDENCE. Beyond. Beyond the physical. Beyond normal. Beyond what’s believed possible. Beyond even our conception of reality. This is the work of the Artist. Ever striving to see the world from outside the world to stretch the bounds of what...

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    Reading Period: Aug 1 to Apr 30

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    805 publishes debut and emerging writers, poets, photographers, and artists in our quarterly, online journal. Enjoy our issues for free. We seek writing and art that is unexpected, striking, and moving.

  • 1966

    Reading Period: Aug 1 to May 1

    Genre: Creative Nonfiction

    Subgenres: Autobiography/Memoir, Graphic/Illustrated, Nature/Environmental, Narrative Nonfiction

    1966 is a literary magazine that celebrates research-driven creative nonfiction — prose that turns information into story and facts into art. We are published with the support of Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas and its English Department...

  • The 3288 Review

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    Subgenres: Autobiography/Memoir, Experimental, Feminist, LGBT, Historical, Humor, Formal, Nature/Environmental, Prose Poetry, Regional, Narrative Nonfiction, Literary Fiction, Journalism/Investigative Reporting, Translation

    The 3288 Review specifically focuses on writers and artists from (or associated with) West Michigan. This doesn’t mean we don’t accept submissions from the world at large; we consider submissions from anyone, and from anywhere.

  • A-Minor Magazine

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction

    Subgenres: Cross-genre, Experimental, Flash Fiction, Prose Poetry, Literary Fiction

    Flash Fiction, Poetry, Mixed-Genre Works, Art/Text and Artwork. Tastes lean toward surreal, experimental, ambivalent, darkly lyrical and wildly imaginative. The magazine was a weekly publication from May 2010 to Feb 2013. Check out our archives...

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  • The A3 Review

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    Subgenres: Autobiography/Memoir, Commercial Fiction, Cross-genre, Erotica, Experimental, Feminist, Flash Fiction, Graphic/Illustrated, Humor, LGBT, Literary Fiction, Love, Micro-poetry, Narrative Nonfiction, Nature/Environmental, Prose Poetry

    The A3 Review is a literary magazine that behaves like a map, made by the folks who make Writing Maps. Prose and poetry pieces are written with a 150-word limit in response to a themed monthly writing contest. Twelve winners are published in the...

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  • AADOREE

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    Subgenres: Cross-genre, Experimental, Feminist, Flash Fiction, LGBT, Literary Fiction, Prose Poetry

    AADOREE (pronounced the same as “adore”) is a tiny online/print literary journal edited by JD Scott and Alia Tsang. AADOREE aims to publish those voices who are pushing boundaries of writing with an emphasis on interdisciplinary work, formal...

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  • aaduna

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    Subgenres: Cross-genre

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  • Aberration Labyrinth

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry

    Subgenres: Autobiography/Memoir, Cross-genre, Feminist, Humor, Love, Micro-poetry, Political, Pop Culture

    This is a publication that plans to blur the lines of traditional poetry. Too many publications have a narrow definition of what poetry is or what it should be. We don't. In fact, we treasure poetry that strays from the path. We want raw,...

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  • Able Muse

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Creative Nonfiction, Fiction

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  • About Place Journal

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    About Place Journal is the literary publication of the Black Earth Institute. Black. BEI is dedicated to art serving the causes of spirit, earth and society. Issues are guest edited by fellows of the Institute. Themes (titles of issues)are chosen...

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  • Abramelin

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry

    We are a poetry journal, focusing on the highest quality literary poetry. Abramelin has been publishing since the summer of 2006. Many of the best small press writers have graced our pages. I have changed the format from one or two issues a year...

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  • The Acentos Review

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    Subgenres: Autobiography/Memoir, Cross-genre, Experimental

    The Acentos Review publishes poetry, fiction, memoir, interviews, translations and artwork by emerging and established Latin@ writers four times a year. We welcome submissions in English, Spanish, Spanglish, Portuguese, and indigenous languages....

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  • Acorn: a Journal of Contemporary Haiku

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Mar 1

    Genre: Poetry

    Subgenres: Micro-poetry

    Acorn is a biannual journal dedicated to publishing the best of contemporary English-language haiku. In particular, it showcases the individual poem and the ability of haiku to reveal the extraordinary moments found in everyday life.

  • Adanna

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    Subgenres: Feminist

    Adanna, a name of Nigerian origin, pronounced a-DAN-a, is defined as “her father’s daughter.” Women over the centuries have been defined by men in politics, through marriage, and most importantly, by the men who fathered them. Women are still...

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  • Adelaide Literary Magazine

    Reading Period: Jan 1 to Dec 31

    Genre: Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction

    Subgenres: Translation

    We seek to publish outstanding literary fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, and to promote the writers we publish, helping authors reach a wider literary audience.

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