You’ve probably heard of flash fiction. Maybe you’ve written one (or several) bite-sized stories and submitted your tiny tale to a paying flash fiction market. But what if you’ve written short nonfiction? Although not as easy to find as their flash fiction counterparts, paying markets do exist for concise creative nonfiction, short essays, mini memoirs, and brief book reviews. Even better, a number of these markets accept work through Submittable.
Let’s look at a few examples.
Nonprofit organization Electric Literature has a mission to highlight current events and social issues through quality writing. During brief submission windows on Submittable, check out their section entitled “The Commuter.” Flash prose, including experimental work, up to 1,500 words is considered.
The Forge Literary Magazine
Having trouble finding an editor who likes your style? Try submitting your work to The Forge Literary Magazine, which rotates its editors. Anonymous fiction and nonfiction submissions up to 5,000 words are permitted through Submittable, with preference given to pieces under 3,000 words. Flash and micro works are especially appreciated.
The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts
If you can squeeze your narrative into 600 words or fewer, consider submitting it to The Journal of Compressed Creative Arts. Fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, and experimental mixed media works are welcome. Send work anonymously through Submittable. Be sure to choose the correct category for your submission!
Have you read a book or poetry book that everyone should know about? If so, consider writing a 1,200 – 2,500 review and sending it to The Rumpus, a pop culture online magazine. Women and non-binary authors who would like to try their hand at comedy are welcome to submit 650 – 1,000 word pieces to their “Funny Women” category on Submittable. Accepted authors have the option to opt-in to a $300 pool shared among their fellow contributors.
True to its name, The Rush seeks flash fiction and nonfiction pieces that readers can breeze through. This literary magazine from Mount Saint Mary’s University in Los Angeles accepts both fiction and nonfiction prose up to 1,500 words as well as poetry through Submittable. Be attentive to their brief submission windows.
Split Lip Magazine
Think you can fit your memoir within a 2,000 word limit? Pop culture oriented Split Lip Magazine may become a good home for your compressed life story. Flash fiction and poetry are also welcome through Submittable. Please note, free submissions are only accepted in January, March, May, September, and November. Otherwise, there’s a reading fee. Split Lip Magazine is closed to submissions in July and August.
The Threepenny Review
Looking for an established publication that pays its contributors a princely sum? Check out The Threepenny Review. Like any well-known literary journal, competition is stiff. But why not take a chance submitting your maximum 1,000 word musings to their “Table Talk” section? Read samples of past work and guidelines on their website before sending work through their online submission system or snail mail. Please note: simultaneous submissions are not allowed.
Zetetic: A Record of Unusual Inquiry
Empire & Great Jones Creative Arts Foundation manages three anthology markets through their company E & GJ Little Press. One of these markets is Zetetic: A Record of Unusual Inquiry, which is interested in publishing creative nonfiction and stories that just don’t seem to fit in other literary venues. Submit prose from 400 – 2,500 words on their Submittable page. Be sure to check out their sister anthology collections: Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things for young readers ages 10 and up, and Spark: A Creative Anthology for literary adult fiction.
Since 2017, CRAFT has accepted literary short stories and flash fiction for their free online magazine. Now, as of 2020, creative flash nonfiction up to 1,000 words is also on their wishlist. CRAFT is additionally seeking 1,500 – 2,000 word essays about the craft of writing. In accordance with this magazine’s mission to highlight the art and craft of prose, accepted pieces are prefaced by editorial notes regarding the author’s style. Check out their Submittable page year round for opportunities.
Submittable Content for Creatives
Naturally, I saved the best for last. What flash nonfiction market list would be complete without Submittable Content for Creatives? This blog is responsible for my first paid nonfiction writing credit. It has since become my go-to publication for submitting helpful essays for writers. Maybe you have some writing tips to share with fellow authors as well. If so, check out the “Eclectic Essays” tab under the Submittable portal. There are also tabs for “Book Reviews” and “Interviews.” Although currently closed to submissions, check this market in the future for great opportunities.
Time to find your best flash nonfiction market
As with any publication, be sure to read and follow all guidelines carefully before submitting work. Remember, short does not equal sloppy. A tight word count means less space to impress editors and readers for flash nonfiction markets. So, polish your piece and send it to one or more of the listed publishers. Because in today’s fast paced world, quick non-fic can capture editors’ and readers’ attention while hopefully avoiding the dreaded TL;DR designation.