Where To Look
For any writer, the choice to have your work published by a literary magazine is easy enough; you have something you’re proud of and you want to share it with the world. But figuring out how to find literary magazines to submit to can be more complicated. The choices are vast, but it may not feel that way if you’re not sure where to look. If you are new to the literary magazine scene, here are a few places to find publications:
The Literary Magazine section of NewPages
Newpages should definitely be in your bookmarks as a writer. The site has a section specifically for literary magazines you can peruse through. You can read up about the lit mag, get linked to their site, and figure out if this is the publication you want to submit to. And don’t worry, this section has plenty of options so don’t feel pressured to like the first one you click on.
NewPages also has another section, call for submissions. This is best if you’re looking for publications that are currently accepting work. This section also shows you publications and organizations that might not show up in the Literary Magazine tab.
Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook are all amazing places to catch up with friends, news, or the latest drama, but did you know this is also a good place to find literary magazines? From independent to mainstream, almost every (if not every!) literary magazine has some sort of social media account to connect with their readers. You can easily type ‘literary magazine’ or ‘call for submissions’ into the search box of any social site and find a heap of literary magazines willing to accept work.
Another good perk: the way the magazine designs their social media layout says a lot about their style. You can tell what kind of submissions a magazine prefers, traditional or experimental, based on their aesthetic. Who knows? You might be able to join a community of writers who enjoy the same style as you do!
Here (Capulet Mag)
You didn’t forget about us, did you? Well if you don’t already know, Capulet Mag is always accepting submissions. Just take a look at our submission page to see when the spring and fall cut off dates are as well as our guidelines!
Let’s go a step further and talk about fit. Finding magazines is the first step, but knowing that your work and values are a good fit is sometimes even more important. Let’s face it: the number of lit mags can be overwhelming. Maybe you’ve submitted before, and you haven’t gotten the acceptances you expect? While there are a lot of things to consider like development, style, and experience level, the fit of your piece might be to blame.
What goes into fit? Here’s a breakdown:
- Demographics. For Capulet Mag, that means young women under 30. Other magazines might have their own demographic information.
- Genre. Many magazines focus on a single genre or several. It’s a good idea to review past editions to see what they’ve accepted in the past. Could you see your work fitting this same genre?
- Experience level. While I’d never dissuade a new writer or artist from trying their luck, sometimes experience is important. Many magazines look exclusively for new writers who have never been published, and others want their contributors to have a big resume. Once again, check past editions and see for yourself what kind of bios the contributors have. At the end of the day, go with your gut. Just because a magazine only accepted experienced writers in the past doesn’t mean they won’t see something in your work.
- Values. Different magazines are for different communities. At Capulet Mag, we aren’t trying to appeal to everyone. Make sure the values of the magazine align with your own for a better chance of being heard.
These are the four parts of fit, but much of it is just going with your intuition. There’s never any harm in trying, and much of publishing is a numbers game.
I hope this guide shined some light on how to find literary magazines that are a good fit for your work. Not sure where to start? Submit here! We’re always open to writers and artists of all levels and backgrounds.