Are you an LGBTQ+ writer interested in submitting to literary magazines, genre magazines, and small presses? Good news: you can choose from a wide selection of eligible markets that showcase a variety of stories, topics, and written forms. Whether you write steamy romances, paranormal mysteries, optimistic science fiction, or heartfelt poetry, there are editors eager to look at your work. Let’s look at a few paying publications specifically seeking LGBTQ+ writers to help you get started.
The digital first imprint of Harlequin, Carina Press currently has a category on their Submittable page for contemporary queer romances that feature traditional romance tropes including “enemies to lovers,” “fake relationship,” and “mistaken identity.” Their Carina Adores romance line encourages unsolicited submissions of complete manuscripts that range in heat levels from tender intimacy to highly erotic.
Non-contemporary LGBTQ+ romances featuring a central romance that ends with a happily ever after (HEA) or happy for now (HFN) may be submitted to Carina Press’s other lines such as “Historical Romance” or “Romantic Suspense.” Mysteries, with or without romance, are also considered.
For those of you not quite ready to write a 50,000+ word novel, consider sending your literary short story, poem, creative nonfiction, or novel excerpt to The Fiddlehead. Competition for this well-known Canadian literary magazine is tough. But editors are especially interested in receiving submissions from LGBTQ+ writers via Submittable. Despite the 1-2% acceptance rate, this magazine is famous for giving authors feedback, which can be far more helpful than a form rejection.
Looking for a literary journal specifically seeking work from queer authors? Check out Foglifter Journal. Poetry, prose, and experimental cross-genre works are welcome in addition to cover art. Also read their sample pieces to see if your work fits the tone of the magazine before submitting via Submittable during their open submission windows.
Did you know there’s a podcast magazine devoted entirely to LGBTQ+ speculative stories? Meet GlitterShip, which could provide a good home for your queer science fiction, fantasy, or horror short story. This market also accepts poems, reprints, and simultaneous submissions via their online submission system. Be sure to remain attentive to their submission windows.
A small press that publishes up to twenty-five books per year, Homebound Publications is eager to receive work from LGBTQ+ writers in all three of their imprints: Homebound Publications (creative nonfiction), Owl House Books (genre fiction), and Little Bound Books (chapbooks). Descriptions and submission guidelines for each imprint are available on Homebound’s Submittable page. Please note that editors are only accepting submissions from United States and United Kingdom authors at this time.
Self-identified as a “small queer press,” JMS Books welcomes submissions of unsolicited LGBTQ+ romance and erotic romance novels ranging from 12,000 to 130,000 words. Not sure what to write about? Check out their “Special Submissions Calls” section on their “Submission Guidelines” page. Read their tips regarding bestselling pairings and tropes to help increase your chances of publication.
The Lifted Brow
Australian literary journal The Lifted Brow wants to hear from “authors on the margins.” If you’ve read one of their back issues and think your work is a good fit, watch for their open submission periods on Submittable. Their small press, Brow Books, accepts literary fiction and nonfiction manuscripts from Australian writers only, but The Lifted Brow is happy to look at work from writers around the world.
A quirky small press in Oregon, Microcosm Publishing produces books about bicycling, DIY projects, budget travel, punk rock, and queer erotica among other niche topics. Interested submitters must prepare an extensive pitch according to strict guidelines in order to have their work considered. If Microcosm’s instructions feel overwhelming, consider submitting a speculative short story to their annual Bikes in Space anthology instead.
New Mexico boutique publisher NineStar Press is currently seeking both literary and romantic stories featuring LGBTQ+ characters. Romances must be 18,000-120,000 words in length while stories outside the romance genre must be 45,000-120,000 words in length. Take a look at NineStar’s catalog for inspiration and then read guidelines carefully before submitting work via email.
Plenitude Magazine invites LGBTQ2S+ individuals to submit fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, book reviews and articles via Submittable. Although certain submission calls are reserved exclusively for Canadian authors, general submissions are open to writers around the world. Be sure to read previously published work under the “Literature” tab of Plenitude’s website.
Timeworn Literary Journal
Timeworn Literary Journal’s tagline is “Historical Fiction from the fringe.” Short stories must take place before 1996, but surrealist and speculative elements are welcome, as are minority perspectives. Check out their published stories to get a feel for the editors’ literary preferences.
Translunar Travelers Lounge
Have you written a fun, lighthearted speculative short story? Consider sending it to Translunar Travelers Lounge. This new speculative magazine is especially interested in receiving stories starring characters not typically well represented in literature. Read the list of dos and don’ts on this publication’s submission page and check out some previously published stories.
Literary magazine Winter Tangerine is all about uplifting unheard voices. Short stories and poems are read blind, but an artist statement is required in accordance with the magazine’s philosophy that identity influences art. During open calls, work is accepted through Submittable. Also check out their sister organization, Honeysuckle Press, and consider entering their annual chapbook contest.
More opportunities for LGBTQ+ writers
From burgeoning lit mags to established big-name publishers, editors are waiting to read work from LGBTQ+ writers, and an audience is ready to devour it. Use this list as a starting point, but seek out additional opportunities listed on Submittable Discover. Type “lgbtqia” in the search bar of your account for queer-specific submission calls. For additional LGBTQ+ submission calls, check out Lambda Literary. Need some more resources? Visit Publishing… and Other Forms of Insanity, Horror Tree, and NewPages.