163 Literary Magazines Accepting Reprints
The more I read the list the madder I got. Not at the blog and not at the author, but at the fact 123 of those 163 publications don’t pay for reprints. But what you don’t immediately see is most of them don’t pay for original works, either. Look closely and you’ll see that 11 pay token payments, three admit paying pennies, 12 pay semi-pro rates when pro is six cents/word. Some admit $1, $2, $5 and $8 flat rate. You could count on one hand the ones that pay double digits, with the highest admitting paying $10 to $100.
I understand that the author of the piece attempted to help writers who wanted to resell material they’d already published. “Very few of them will pay you, but you
will have the satisfaction of knowing that you have reached more readers.” Sorry, that’s still exposure, in my book – in lieu of payment.
Why should you write for these publications? You shouldn’t. The only way I’d write for a publication such as these is if their reputation is pretty darn big and can catapult your career. I don’t mean 2,500 readers. I mean tens of thousands and their name is recognizable and respected. Otherwise, you’re feeding their preference to pay writers nothing and the exposure promise is worth nil. Exposure to a small group is not exposure.
Why do people submit to them? A wide range of reasons. Because they think it’ll make them look professional. Because they think the exposure will do something for their career, not evening thinking what “exposure” means. Because they hate rejection. Many would rather publish quickly or for nothing than hold out. It’s possibly ego or desperation to publish, or a combination of the two. It’s so much more professional, and you’ll respect yourself so much more, if you hold off publishing until you can climb the ladder a little bit and reach the paying publications. Yes, even in the literary world, they have markets that pay. One of the biggest myths out there is if you write for free or pennies, you are paying your dues. Um, no. You are proving to a higher calibre editor and publication that you settle for less.
Most say they do not have the budget to pay. Many say they are nonprofit and cannot afford to pay. Some say they are university affiliated and, therefore, cannot afford to pay. The fact is, if you run a business (and a nonprofit or university press is a business), and you run it properly, you find the money to pay the people providing the raw materials that make it happen. The printer, the mailman, and all the players who put that publication together are getting paid. Which means you should be shamed into starving.