Do you remember the feeling when you saw your name in print in the Writers In the Schools anthology, when you read your work at a Café reading, or saw it included in WITS online chapbooks? Here’s how to achieve that feeling again. And if you never published before, but have a stack of your favorite art and writing sitting on your desk, this is a perfect place to start.
The exciting thing about being young and unknown is that many experienced writers are dedicated to your growth and run publications that want to give you constructive criticism and edit your work. Spend some time browsing the links below for publications that fit your writing style, and send in your most polished work.
***Remember that if you are under 18, most of these publications require some form of parental permission.***
Publications for Young Authors:
The Blue Pencil Online: Online journal for writers ages 12-18.
Not only do they publish fiction, verse, playwriting and essays, but they also publish translations of work from foreign languages to English, as well as audio recordings of interviews and readings. They also offer large scholarship prizes for students who submit to Blue Pencil Online—up to 45,000 in prize money a year!
Blue Pencil is also a great place to read the work of other young writers—you can download a PDF of every Blue Pencil edition for free off the website.
chixLIT: Print ‘zine for girls ages 13-17
By girls, for girl! This ’zine includes a lively online community and chixPIX photo gallery. They publish poems, short shorts, reviews, rants, love letters, and songs—but only your shorter ones (300 words max). Young writers just like you edit the ’zine, and if you are interested in editing, you can apply via email. To submit, you have to print and send in a parent-permission form, and photo submissions are only accepted via snailmail.
The Claremont Review: Canadian print journal for ages 13-19
The coolest thing about the Claremont Review is that the editing team of professional writers will reply to your submission with comments and suggestions, whether or not they decide to publish you.
Cicada Magazine: Print magazine for young writers ages 16+
This magazine accepts fiction, non-fiction, poetry, artwork, and also submissions to their “expressions category”—where you can express your opinion and observation about anything. Cicada is especially looking for HUMOR! Of absolutely any kind, even the laughing-through-tears kind.
**Another resource you can access through Cicada’s website is THE SLAM—I write in all caps because it is a brutally honest, “not for the faint of heart,” online writing forum, where you can submit your work to be critiqued by anyone who visits the website. A little scary but could be awesomely helpful. www.cicadamag.com/theslam
Figment: An online community for writers of all ages
Figment is an online community where you can share your writing, connect with other readers, and discover new authors and stories. You can sign up for Figment using Facebook, Twitter or your personal email; once you are signed in, you can read stories posted by other writers, browse different groups and chat forums, or submit to one of Figment’s many writing contests. Figment is an online presence only, they don’t publish a print magazine. This creative and dynamic website is a great way for young writers to get their work out there and connect with students who share their love of writing.
Frodo’s Notebook: Online publication for writers ages 13-19
The editors of “Frodo’s Notebook” are especially interested in experimental writing. Their impressive archives are always open to the public for free online, so read away!
Hanging Loose Press: Print publication for mostly new writers, with a section devoted to high school writers.
The editors of Hanging Loose Magazine take young writers seriously. If you include a note with your submission asking for editorial advice, they will spend the time to respond to you and your work. They publish primarily poetry and prose.
The History Tree: Magazine for young people about history and genealogy, accepts short submissions about particular topics.
They are interested in your stories about family traditions, heirlooms, pets, and immigration, as well as interviews with your grandparents and short biographies of historical figures, especially women.
Kid-Cast: A site that allows you to upload and post your own podcast.
Kid-Cast would be a great place to share your spoken word poetry, music, or discussions about writing/anything. Once you create an account you can upload and listen whenever you want.
Louisville Review: A poetry journal with a “Children’s Corner” that publishes the poetry of student writers (k-12).
Merlyn’s Pen: A developed web-page and online library for student work grades 5-12.
Native Youth Magazine: An online magazine for Native American youth that accepts submissions.
Navigating the Maze: A print anthology of poetry and artwork from teens grade 6-12. “Navigating the Maze” also accepts class submissions from art and English teachers.
Polyphony H.S.: A print journal for high schoolers that publishes poetry, fiction, and non-fiction.
The editors are devoted to helping you improve your writing and enter the larger literary community so they provide feedback for every submission, whether accepted or not. You can also apply to be a reader for the magazine.
A River & Sound Review: This online literary journal accepts poetry, fiction, non-fiction and humor upon invitation to make a submission. Two issues come out each year, in the spring and fall. They also publish translations of the above categories and create podcasts out of live literary productions.
Skipping Stones: This children’s magazine based in Eugene focuses on multicultural issues and stories. They accept work from both children and adults, but their focus age group is 8-16. They ask especially for stories about your family, your home and traditions you are a part of. They also accept art and ethnic food recipes.
Speak Up Press: A yearly print anthology with the work of artists ages 13-19.
Speak Up also publishes a couple of selected pieces online each month. You do not have to be enrolled in school to submit, unlike many other student publications. Pretty cool.
Teen Ink: A website and print magazine for teens (13-19).
The Writer’s Slate: A yearly anthology of student work (kindergarten through 12th grade).
YALDAH: A magazine for and by Jewish girls. They accept submissions from girls ages 9-17, of interest to Jewish girls ages 9-14.
5×5: A print magazine that publishes the work of writers high school aged and older. “5×5″ doesn’t have an e-mag, but they offer FREE subscriptions that can be sent right to your doorstep four times a year. Each issue is pocket-sized, has its own theme (announced in advance), and holds short but complex pieces.
Writing Contests for Young Authors:
Annual Ray Bradbury Creative Contest: A creative writing contest open to writers of all ages, in honor of beloved science fiction writer Ray Bradbury who passed away in 2012.
The Fire Escape Writing Contests: Fire escape holds annual writing contests for both fiction and poetry. The contests are open to writers ages 13-19 who were themselves, or who have one or two parents who were born in another country. The Fire Escape is looking for stories and poems that reflect the joys and struggles of navigating two cultures.
The Writing Conference, Inc.: The Writing Conference, Inc. sponsors writing contests for elementary, middle and high school students. Students may create a poem, narrative, or essay. Each of the first place winners will receive a plaque and the option to have their work published in The Writers’ Slate.