Writing from personal perspectives can be a powerful way to connect to an audience that is familiar with your story. Since writing creative nonfiction is a combination of journalistic skills and storytelling abilities, there are vast opportunities to publish your work. This involves personal memoirs, cultural criticism, documentaries, poems and literary journals.
Here is a list of 10 paying markets accepting such submissions.
1. Kveller. This is an online Jewish journal focusing on parenting and women’s issues, preferably written from a Jewish angle. They are looking for ìpersonal, narrative driven essays about parenting, and all issues affecting women.î Suggested word count is 500-1000 words. Do not submit previously published work (including your personal blog) or anonymous pieces. Email your blog post to submissions(at)kveller(dot)com either as a word attachment or pasted in the body of email. Don’t forget to include the word “submission” in the subject line. Include a brief bio, contact information, and your complete original blog post of between 500-700 words. The site pays $25 per post. Read the Guidelines first.
2. The Awl. Pitch any thoughtful reported pieces, incisive essays, deep cultural criticism, odd character studies, poems, jokes and profiles. The editors will work with you on difficult pieces. Word count ranges, but is really not an issue. If you have a first person essay that has an interesting universal implication, email your post to notes(at)theawl(dot)com. Payment ranges from $30-$250. Contact them to request their writer’s guidelines.
3. Dame Magazine. This magazine features personal essays on personal finance, family, gender, parenting, entertainment and anything else that would interest its audience. They prefer stories that are relevant to women. Read the site to get a sense on the kind of articles they publish. Responds within a week. Words run between 800-2000 words. Send a query, including a short bio. Mainly focusing on women over 30, this magazine, according to the editor, aims to “entertain, inform and inspire”. Send editorial pitches to editorial(at)damemagazine(dot)com . Payment for essays is $200.
4. The New York Times. The magazine seeks deep personal essays on everything touching on relationships, from dating to marriage. Check out the guidelines before submitting your post of at least 1,700 words to modernlove(at)nytimes(dot)com . Payment is up to $300.
5. Slate. A general-interest publication offering analysis and commentary about politics, news, business, technology, and culture. Send your pitches to pitchslate(at)slate(dot)com. Your subject line should include the phrase “article submission.” Payment is from $250-$500. Writers can be located from anywhere, with diverse backgrounds and perspectives.
6. XoJane. The magazine seeks personal essays from a “raw, honest perspective”. The subject of your mail should include a clear and informative headline describing your pitch. Your story idea should clearly connect with the XoJane audience, so be sure to clearly explain how your personal experience impacted your life. Send pitches to pitches(at)xojane(dot)com, but read their pitching guidelines first. Most posts earn $50.
7. Progressive magazine. The Progressive is a monthly magazine of “investigative reporting, political commentary, cultural coverage, activism, interviews, poetry, and humor. Articles strive to expose corporate malfeasance and governmental wrongdoing.” Payment is $500-$1,300/article. Email high quality submissions on the above topics to editorial(at)progressive(dot)org.
8. Chicken Soup for the Soul. This ongoing book series welcomes inspirational true stories on touching extraordinary experiences that happened to people, written in first person narrative. Stories need to be filled with emotion so that readers feel they are actually in the scene. Read the guidelines. Payment is $100-$200. Stories may only be submitted via the website.
9. Catholic Digest. Submission guidelines. This is a catholic lifestyle magazine that ìencourages and supports Catholics in a variety of life stages and circumstances.” According to the site, “Queries submitted must be strongly focused on a definitive topic, and hold a national appeal.” Features are approximately 1500 words on the following topics: Last Word – Back page, personal, inspirational, reflective essay featuring high quality writing from a variety of Catholic writers. Word count is between 550-700 words. Payment is $500 upon publication. Open Door – True, first-person stories (350-600 words) about an individual converting to the Catholic faith, or recovering the Catholic faith they had lost. Include headshot photo to accompany the story. Word count ranges from 350-600 words. Pays $100 on publication. Research their Guidelines before submitting.
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Flora Ojow is a creative freelance writer who enjoys doing what she loves most: writing. Her blog allows her to assist other writers on their journey, including finding paying gigs. During her free time, she enjoys swimming, watching movie series and writing, of course.