Publishing your writing in literary magazines is one way authors and poets give themselves credibility when submitting longer works to publishers. Having a publishing record means that you not only have experience working with editors and publishers but that you are likely to already have a following of readers who recognise your name.
To give yourself the best chance of being published, the advice is to read a couple of issues of the publication that you wish to submit to in order to make sure your writing style and themes are compatible with the publication and their readers.
With that in mind, here are 7 Australian literary magazines you should consider publishing your work with.
Voiceworks is a quarterly literary journal for writers under 25 which publishes fiction, nonfiction, poetry, art and comics. Voiceworks also offer individual feedback on all submissions and all selected pieces go through a collaborative editing process to help contributors develop their writing.
Westerly’s print magazine is published twice each year plus two online special issues available for free digital download, and other content throughout the year on the website. They maintain an emphasis on Australia, Western Australia and the Asian region but are happy to cover literature and culture from around the world. They accept submissions for short stories, poetry, memoir, creative non-fiction, essays and literary criticism.
Now an imprint of Melbourne University Publishing, Meanjin is a quarterly literary magazine that focuses on contemporary thinking. They accept poetry, essay and fiction submissions as well as reviews although submissions are only open at certain times of the year and often have themes or focus on current news and politics.
Cordite Poetry Review is a quarterly online publication that is free to read and accepts up to three poetry submissions. They also accept essays of peer-reviewed research on Australian and international poetry and poetics, articles specifically relating to poetry, and interviews. Issues often have a theme which is released in advance.
Australia’s most-successful speculative fiction magazine, Aurealis accepts science fiction, fantasy and supernatural horror short stories as well as non-fiction pieces including humour, serious articles and interviews. Subscribers to the magazine are fast-tracked through the process and submissions are open to Australian and New Zealand residents for longer than international contributors.
Published quarterly, Griffith Review publishes essays, memoir, reportage, short fiction, poetry and visual essays particularly those that reflect on timely matters and political discussions. They aim to foster and inform public debate, prefer longer articles and publish the themes of their issues in advance so that you can submit to a particular issue and its theme.
Well of course we want you to submit to us! But let’s be clear, we aim to be a bit of a stepping stone for you to move on to these other awesome publications already mentioned. Underground is published quarterly online and is free to read. We accept poetry and fiction and offer feedback on all submissions. Those who are selected will also go through a one-on-one editorial experience to help develop their writing.