Opportunities: April 2019

A curated roundup for April 2019 of submission opportunities for short stories, poetry, and non-fiction writing.

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As the scarves and woolly hats find their way back into the wardrobe for another year, let us see the cold and darkness of winter out with a promising spring on the horizon. Spring is one of my favourite times of year, as the trees and bushes that lost their leaves in the colder months come out of hibernation and bless our eyes with colour and life. So, like the new awakenings of nature, maybe it’s time to dig out that old project you’ve been working on and breathe some life into it.

Opportunities for writers are plentiful in this world, and as we embark on a new season of lighter days, warmer air and new awakenings, we can only hope to give our short stories, poems and essays the same new lease of life. Obviously it’s worth mentioning that this here site, run by Thanet Writers, is looking for submissions, and pays a flat rate of £10 for UK print rights for each short story, poem, essay, or book review that is accepted for publication. You can find out more by clicking here. For those looking further afield (which is something we actively encourage) I’ve dug around and found plenty of opportunities for platform, money and all the feel-good that can come from publication.

No matter what stage you are in your writing endeavours—be it a published author, sometime blogger, or newcomer like we all once were—there will be something in this article (and the last) for you. If you’re sitting on your first piece of finished work and wonder what you could do with it to better your position as a writer (and to let others enjoy the fruits of your labour) then the list of opportunities below may help.

Short Stories

Fancy getting your fiction alongside the words of T.S. Eliot, William Boyd, and Derek Walcott, in one of England’s oldest periodicals? Then The London Magazine might be for you. It is certainly a good place to get noticed. The magazine is published six times per year and is unmissable for those with an interest in literature, culture and ideas. Short stories can be up to 4,000 words in length (previously unpublished) and it’s free to submit. There is no money or financial reward; however the pieces selected may be published in the magazine, e-book form, through The London Magazine app, as well as the website itself. Also open for poetry and non-fiction.

For those seeking distant shores, now is the time to get your red leaves ready to bless our Canadian friends with your tales. The Puritan online literary magazine is open for submissions all year for their quarterly magazine. They are paying $75 per fictional story (previously unpublished) and the word limit can be taken to 12,000 words. If you’re in the mood for something short and sweet, they take up to three flash fictions pieces in one submission (up to 500 words). Besides that, The Puritan prefers not to publish fiction or poetry from the same writer more than once per year. They also seek essays, poetry and interviews. Worth checking out.

If you have a preference for flash fiction, there is neat online literary magazine that’s dedicated to exactly that. SmokeLong Quarterly publishes fiction (previously unpublished) of up to 1,000 words and pay $25 per successful publications. Also of note is the SmokeLong Flash Fellowship for Emerging Writers—a hosted biennial write-in-residence which offers publication and a $500 reward—that gets four of your stories published in each quarterly issue for a year. Entries open in late-Summer, and to be eligible you need to have been published in SmokeLong Quarterly, so get submitting, as this is a great way of building connections in the writing world.


To get us started this month on poetry, let’s look at Split Lip Magazine. This online and print-based magazine showcases art, music, and film, in addition to the fiction, poetry, and memoir traditionally found in literary magazines. Submissions are free during April, as well as June, August, October, December, and February. They do pay, and have variable rates depending on web or print publishing, but they only want the best, so ask for one poem to be submitted only.

Upping the stakes a bit, Poetry London has the same relation to London as The New Yorker has to New York; it’s a national and international magazine with some serious reach. Poetry London is published three times per year and strives to attract the best poets currently writing in English. They also have a big-money competition running: Poetry London Clore Prize of 2019. The first prize is £5,000, second prize is £2,000, third prize is £1,000, four commendations are awarded of £500 each, plus all placed poems are published in one of the most prestigious poetry magazines in the UK. The closing date is 1st May 2019 so get your work in quick! Entry fee is £3 per poem or £7 for non-subscribers, and all poetry must be previously unpublished and kept within eighty lines.

On a more local level, Confluence Magazine has been running for some time now and is getting attention for its high quality of poetry. Submissions must be from “within the Medway Delta and Beyond.” As many Thanet-based poets have been published in the magazine, the definition of ‘Beyond’ is fairly lax. Submissions are open throughout April 2019. Send up to five poems, though short stories are also accepted.


When it comes to getting your work noticed, you could do a lot worse than Creative Nonfiction. This publication has consistently featured prominent authors from around the world and has helped launch the careers of some of the most exciting contemporary writers. Creative Nonfiction has a circulation of 10,000 and serves the whole spectrum of readers, from non-fiction and journalism enthusiasts to poetry and fiction writers, editors and agents. They are currently looking for non-fiction pieces up to 4,500 words. The deadline is 13th May 2019, and there is a $3 submission fee for non-subscribers, but the weight of being published by Creative Nonfiction is definitely worth the effort.


For April’s potentially career-changing publication highlight, I’d like to look at The Sun Magazine. The Sun (not the newspaper) is an independent, ad-free magazine that for more than forty years has attempted to evoke the splendour and heartache of being human. Issues are released monthly and feature fiction, personal essays, poetry, written interviews, and photography. According to The Sun, the magazine “celebrates life, but not in a way that ignores its complexity.”

A non-profit magazine with more than 70,000 subscribers, The Sun sets out to challenge the status quo and honour courageous and honest writing. They offer up to $2,000 payment for fiction and non-fiction, and up to $250 for poetry, as well as the weighty reputation of being published on their pages.

Good luck, and if you come across any opportunities you think are worthy of mentioning as they offer significant prestige, payment, or both, then please let me know.

Sam is a full-time working father of three, a fitness bod, and a writer; often sighted drinking fine ales and riding motorbikes.

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