Great list of heavy hitters. These are terrific publications, but most of them are extremely tough to crack and several only really consider agented submissions (even if their guidelines say otherwise). I think emerging writers should also submit to smaller magazines that are open to work by unpublished or not-widely-published writers (like Fiction Attic!). As a NYT bestselling author with four novels and two story collections under my belt , I know that my chances of getting into the New Yorker, Atlantic Monthly, Zoetrope, or Boulevard are exceedingly slim. Unpublished writers may find a home for their work at reputable, university-sponsored magazines, which are often run by MFA candidates and may be more serious about reading unsolicited, unagented submissions.
We welcome submissions of previously unpublished manuscripts of all lengths, ranging from short short stories to complete book-length works for serialization. Narrative regularly publishes fiction, poetry, and nonfiction, including stories, novels, novel excerpts, novellas, personal essays, humor, sketches, memoirs, literary biographies, commentary, reportage, interviews, and features of interest to readers who take pleasure in storytelling and imaginative prose. We look for quality and originality of language and content. In addition to submissions for issues of Narrative Magazine itself, we also encourage submissions for our Story of the Week, literary contests, and Readers’ Narratives. Please read our Submission Guidelines for all information on manuscript formatting, word lengths, author payment, and other policies.