19 Websites and Magazines That Want to Publish Your Personal Essays

19 Websites and Magazines That Want to Publish Your Personal Essays

They’re all over your Facebook feed, and for good reason. Personal essays by popular authors and novices alike are relatable, engrossing reads.

Sometimes, their heart-wrenching reflections stay with you for days.

For reporters or academics, it can be hard to step back from research rituals and write from personal experience. But a personal essay can endear you to an audience, bring attention to an issue, or simply provide comfort to a reader who’s “been there.”

“Writing nonfiction is not about telling your story,” says , an essayist who emphasized the importance of creating a clear connection between your personal experience and universal topics. “It’s about telling interesting and worthy stories about the human condition using examples from your life.”

But don’t worry if your life doesn’t seem exciting or heart-wrenching enough to expound upon; think of it as writing through yourself, instead of about yourself. “There are few heroes and even fewer villains in real life,” she said. “If you’re going to write about your human experience, write the truth. It’s worth it to write what’s real.”

Where to submit your personal essays

Once you’ve penned your essay, which publications should you ? We’ve all heard of — and likely submitted to — The New York Times’ Modern Love column, but that’s not the only outlet that accepts personal narratives.

“Submit to the places you love that publish work like yours,” Ford advises, but don’t get caught up in the size of the publication. And “recognize that at small publications you’re way more likely to find someone with the time to really help you edit a piece.

To help you find the right fit, we’ve compiled a list of 19 publications that accept essay submissions, as well as tips on how to pitch the editor, who to and, whenever possible, how much the outlet pays.

We’d love to make this list even more useful, so if you have additional ideas or details for these publications or others, please leave them below in the comments!

1.

The Boston Globe Magazine Connections section seeks on relationships of any kind. It pays, though how much is unclear. Submit to [email protected] with “query” in the subject line.

Must-read personal essay:,” by Art Sesnovich

2.

about breakfast, brunch, or the culture of mornings to [email protected] or the editor of the section you’re pitching. Average pay hovers at .

Must-read personal essay: Gina Vaynshteyn’s “

3.

“Incisive. Irreverent. Curious. Provoctive. .”

If that’s you, too, send your pitch to e[email protected] Aimed at women in their 30s, the publication covers politics, sex, reproductive rights, LGBTQ issues and more. Pay varies.

Must-read personal essay: By Ann Votaw

4.

“The conversation is much more interesting when everyone has a voice,” according to this progressive, women-focused publication.

To add yours, send a 2-4 paragraph pitch to [email protected] with the word “pitch” in the subject line. Pay is $125 for op-eds and personal essays between 800-1500 words, and $500 for longer, reported pieces. See the submission guidelines for full details.

Must-read personal essay: by Your Fat Friend

5.

Want to write for this Jewish parenting site? To submit, email [email protected] with “submission” somewhere in the subject line. Include a brief bio, information, and your complete original blog post — you can either attach it as a Word document or paste it into the body of the email. Suggested word count: 500-1000. Per a well-loved private Facebook group for freelance writers, pay is about $50.

Must-read personal essay: B.J. Epstein’s “

Not sure where to share your personal essays? Here’s your list of sites to target.

6.

Publications in have won Pushcart Prizes and been selected for Best American Essays — so if your story gets chosen, you’ll be in good company. And since the editors “tend to favor personal writing,” that I-driven nonfiction essay might just be the perfect fit. (Fiction and poetry are also accepted.)

Pay ranges from $300 all the way up to $2,000 for accepted prose. The easiest way to send your story is .

Must-read personal essay: by Barbara Ehrenreich (Editor’s note: The Sun puts its stories behind a paywall…which is why they can afford to pay their writers so handsomely!)

7.

This U.K. magazine has a helpful . Unsolicited submissions, while rarely accepted, are paid; if an editor likes your pitch, you’ll hear back in 24 hours. Email [email protected] to get started.

Must-read personal essay: ,” by Dave Eggers

8.

The popular Modern Love feature accepts submissions of 1,700 words max at [email protected] Include a Word attachment, but also paste the text into your message. Consult the Times’ page on first, and like Modern Love on for even more insight. Rumor has it that a successful submission will earn you $250. (Correction added Oct. 9, 2014: Payment is $300, The New York Times writes on its .)

Amy Sutherland’s column, “,” which ran in 2006, landed her a book contract with Random House and a movie deal with Lionsgate, which is in preproduction. “I never saw either coming,” Sutherland said.

Another option is the Lives column in the New York Times Magazine, which is “open to anyone with a good tale to tell.” Better yet: the encourage writers to “embrace your own strangeness.” To submit, email [email protected].

Must-read personal essay: ” by Nina Riggs

9.

*Editor’s note: As of December 2018, Salon is .

Salon to the appropriate section with “Editorial Submission” in the subject line and the query/submission in the body of the email. Include your writing background or qualifications, along with links to three or four clips.

“I was compensated $150 for my essay,” says Alexis Grant, founder of The Write Life, “but that was several years ago. All in all, working with the editor there was a great experience.” reports average pay of about 12 cents per word.

Must-read personal essay:,” by Alexis Grant

10.

“Slate,” according to its own submission guidelines, “is known for making smart, witty, persuasive statements.” So if you’ve got something to say, email your pitch (not your drafted post) to the appropriate section editor. . Average reported pay is about 24 cents per word.

Must-read personal essay: Justin Peters’ “

11.

Each print issue has a specific cultural theme and welcomes both fiction and nonfiction — and even poetry! Stories and essays of 5,000 words max earn up to $250. Review periods are limited, so check their to make sure your work will be read with the next issue in mind.

Must-read personal essay: ,” by Christopher Locke

12.

The Billfold hopes to make discussing money less awkward and more honest — and regularly puts out . Send your pitch to [email protected]. Who Pays Writers notes a rate of about , but this writer would consider the experience and exposure to be worth the low pay.

Must-read personal essay: ,” by Paulette Perhach

13.

Motherwell seeks of up to 1200 words. Submit a full piece online via ; all contributors are paid.

Must-read personal essay: “” by Tanya Mozias Slavin

14.

This publication focuses on California’s Bay Area. Strong POV and a compelling personal writing style are key. Typical pay is , though higher rates can be negotiated for “complex” pieces. Email [email protected] with the subject line  “Pitch: [Name], [Article Title].”

Must-read personal essay:,” by Rhea St. Julien

15.

of up to 2000 words to this lifestyle site geared toward women. to read full drafts whenever possible. Pay averages about .

Must-read personal essay: by Alexandra Antonopoulos

16.

Focuses on essays that Submit finished essays in the category that fits best. Wait three months before following up. , but possible: Eligible contributors can opt in to receive an even share of the $400 budget the publication sets aside monthly.

Must-read personal essay:” by Michelle Miller

17.

This personal-finance website welcomes submissions that discuss ways to make or save money. Read the before emailing your submission. Pay varies.

Must-read personal essay: ” by Maggie Moore

18.

a story or essay of 10,000 words max in either September or March. Be prepared to hold your horses, though: Response times can be as high as six months, or even longer. Cover letters should include a word count and indicate whether the submission is fiction, nonfiction, or poetry.

Must-read personal essay: by Rachel Yoder

19.

Narratively that tell “original and untold human stories.” in the category that most closely fits your essay. .

Must-read personal essay: ” by Sherry Amatenstein

Still looking for ideas? ’s blog post, “20 Great Places to Publish Personal Essays,” is worth perusing. MediaBistro also offers a section called How to Pitch as part of their , which has an annual fee of $55.

This post was updated in September 2018 so it’s more useful and relevant for our readers! It was originally written by Lisa Rowan and updated by The Write Life team.

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270 comments

  • I’m a post writer. I’ve written some articles of interest. My interest is submission; how, where? I have no interest on all types of advertisement; therefore, a direct submission e-mail would be appreciated. I know my writing potential and my articles have always been published with positive comments. The newspaper I used to write for has folded.

  • Ambar Januel says:

    Thanks for sharing! We also accept article submissions:

  • David says:

    Points in Case publishes comedy articles at

    They’ve been very receptive to my offbeat and weird ideas. But I think they also do lists and stuff.

  • Mary Ellen Collins says:

    Has anyone had any luck with Dame magazine?
    I followed their query directions and queried on March 9. Sent a follow-up on May 3. No response at all. So frustrating!

  • Thanks so much for this list! I’m definitely going to look into some of these as I’m looking to branch out and write for other publications rather than just my own blog.

  • Thanks so much for this Great list!

  • Mary M says:

    Media.com accepts articles.

  • Janice says:

    We also just established an online publication for short stories and advice column. Pooling writers now at starvedforlove.com

  • I’m a retired writer that still wishes to write. Therefore, I need the address or addresses of publisher or publishers, nothing more, no advertisement. At the present, I’ve written an article, Heaven or Hell. Yes, it’s fictional, but all eternal powers are likewise.

  • I’m a retired writer that still enjoys writing. Therefore, I need a publisher (s), no advertisement. Recently, I’ve written an article, Heaven or Health. It deals with decisive decisions versus placement in Heaven or Hell.

  • Valerija says:

    Oh that’s an amazing list! Thank you so much! Also, do you know any magazines who publish articles about art? Thank you!

  • wan smith says:

    A good initiative to write about the magazines that are publishing personal essays. it is also easy for the students of UK universities to take ideas from such posts in order to get their essays being published. There are many top essay writing service UK available online to provide assistance to the newly emerged writers.

  • Kohinoor says:

    I like it
    Thanku
    Plz help me to untie my
    dormance potencial

  • Naresh says:

    Hello madam , I’m from India, I did project on ” AWARENESS ON INCOME TAX DEDUCTIONS”, I would like to send this information to publish. Is there any website to do so. Pls let me inform will they publish my project as a article??

  • Denise says:

    Empty Mirror regularly publishes personal essays. EM is an online literary magazine, established in 2000. The magazine is located at and submissions can be made at .

    I’m the editor and would love to see more essays submitted.

  • Alal Mahmud says:

    thanks for sharing your knowledge to us. i am just searching this type of source to publish my articles.

  • Yasir Ashraf says:

    Thanks Lisa Rowan
    I was searching trough Google search which one is better article submission site Now i will try to published one of my site.

  • Jonathan says:

    Yes but you have to be a good analyzer in any field. It is a professional website for experts, academics and Ph.D students.

  • The Write Life, this is a really handy list that I’m currently using to submit my personal essays. I would love to add she-files.com. The mission at she-files.com is to provide a global platform that advances and informs public discussion about issues and topics of interest to women and adolescent girls through journalism and storytelling. In other words, highlighting stories and profiles of inspiring women. In under a year, we’ve managed to develop an active global audience of just under 80,000 followers. We don’t pay yet, but we have some impressive followers and can provide good exposure.

  • Marian Armstrong Rogers says:

    Thanks so much. Do you know of any online publications that accept previously published personal essays? I self published a memoir in end of 2015, each ‘chapter’ a personal story in itself. Have sold only about 500 copies – no blog, no website, no idea how to create a following. But have had notes from people I never met, who got my book at the local local library and were moved to thank me. I think others would relate to much I’ve written about: daughter’s suicide, daughter’s pancreas transplant, husband’s Alzheimer’s, AND, the small and wonderful Joy’s along the way that make me thankful for all (but the loss of my second daughter). I would be grateful for any suggestions. Still writing, it’s my life, whether a story is ever accepted or not, and I am so glad for The Write Life!
    Again, thanks,
    Marian Armstrong Rogers

  • Thanks Lisa. It’s a treasure for me. Keep doing awesome work. Being an academic writer, I always look for websites to publish my journals. Thanks again.

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