Here’s a list of magazines that pay writers for their articles. Check them out, write articles for those magazines and get paid for your content.
15 Magazines That Pay $500 or More for Content
Finding high-quality paying work is mostly a struggle, as a freelance writer. Often, you may feel that the only paid options are cheap gigs or from content mills, which take ages to add up to real earnings. Yet, finding high-paying gigs is not impossible, might be difficult in the beginning. But, you get a premium rate if you write for some renowned publications.
We’re not saying it won’t take time and experience to get noticed, it’s just that the effort will be worthwhile. As you build your affinity with readers as a quality writer, improve your writing skills, you get paid higher too. For now, you can take solace in the fact that there are high paying gigs beyond cheap content mills.
While numerous magazines and publications pay writers, there are a few that compensate you extremely well for your skills and work. Here’s a list of 15 magazines that will pay you at least USD 500 for each article published!
15 Magazines That Pay $500 or more per Article
This print magazine is the perfect paid gig for history buffs. The magazine focuses on early American traditions, decorating and style. It openly welcomes new writers with a fresh voice and publishes 7 times per year.
Writers can send 2,500 word long features or short stories. The estimated pay for the first feature from a new writer is $500. As your skills develop, you have the opportunity to earn higher.
The Earth Island Journal looks for ‘distinctive and compelling stories, which anticipate concerns revolving around the environment before they become major problems.’ The journal covers plenty of environmental issues including environmental justice, animal rights, climate and energy, environmental public policy, and land and wildlife conservation.
If you travel internationally, it is a great opportunity. Earth Island hungrily seeks on-ground reports from beyond North America. For its print stories, the magazine pays 25 cents per word. The same equates to about $750-$1000 for 4,000 words in-depth features.
If you do not wish to write such long features, you may pitch short online reports. These are a great opportunity for budding writers and pay $100 per report. The journal is always looking for new ideas and publishes 5 days a week.
The VQR journal publishes literature. It discusses the best writing they find, ranging from emerging writers to award-winning authors.
For poetry, the journal pays USD 200 per piece (up to 4 pieces). If the editors accept a set of 5 or more, you receive $1000. For prose, the pay rate is 25 cents a word and accepted short stories shall fetch you $1000 or more. For 2000-2400 word book reviews, the pay is $500. You must check their schedule before making a submission as VQR has limited reading periods.
As the name suggests, AMC Outdoors magazine covers conservation topics, education and outdoor recreation throughout the Northern Appalachian region, including Virginia and Maine states.
For features, the magazine pays about $750 (2000-2500 words). They are always looking for stories with a unique hook. Your pieces become interesting if they spin an outdoor sport in an exciting, new way. You can alternatively offer a tangible sense of meaning and palace or profile individuals who have a unique approach to conservation, in the region. You can find these details on the submission page as a note by Marc Chalufour, the senior editor at AMC.
For its departments, you may pitch shorter stories that fetch anywhere between $150 to $350 a piece.
The Sun Magazine publishes poetry, fiction, interviews and essays. Though their preference is personal pieces, they also accept submissions for their cultural and political issues.
For interviews, essays and fiction, you can receive $300 – $2000, while poetry may fetch you $100-$250. Additionally, you get a complimentary one-year subscription if your work is accepted.
6. Boy’s Life
This monthly magazine focuses on general interest. Since 1911, the Boy Scouts of America have published it. Writers can fetch $500-$1500 for 1500 word long nonfiction articles. You may also write for one of its departments/ For a 600 word article, you’ll receive $100-$600.
There aren’t too many limits regarding what to write about. They cover everything from how to pack a canoe to professional sports and American History. You must go through the submission guidelines before pitching, though. Mostly, the submission needs to be entertaining for the scouts, who are the target readers.
The American Gardener is officially published by the American Horticulture Society. Experienced amateur gardeners are its target audience.
The publication looks for profiles on horticulturists. Additionally, you may send articles about innovative approaches to plant conservation, garden design, biodiversity, horticultural therapy, etc.
The feature articles run 1500-2500 words and can fetch you $300-$600 apiece. The magazine offers expense and travel reimbursement at times.
8. One Story
One Story is a literary magazine. It is sent to subscribers via mail, every three to four weeks and features a single story per issue.
One Story seeks literary fiction between 3000-8000 words and you are free to explore subjects as long as the story is good. For every submission they accept, they offer 25 copies of the magazine and $500. You must note that they accept submissions only between September and May.
The American Scholar is a quarterly magazine. It publishes all forms of content ranging between fiction, essays and poetry. The subject is limited to culture, history, science, literature and public affairs.
The publication pays up to $500 for pieces no longer than 6000 words. For web-only pieces, you can receive $250. All submissions need to be made via their submissions manager as they do not accept email pitches.
Longreads accepts long-form articles ranging between 3000 to 6000 words. The stories can involve in-depth research, sources and multiple reporting tips. Submissions might not deal with current events but must have an excellent sense of purpose or story as well as a compelling premise to hold the reader’s attention.
The magazine works with you to cover expenses and their base pay starts at $1500.
11. National Geographic Travel
This is one publication we’re all familiar with. Now, you can submit your content to them. National Geographic Travel is a leading brand in consumer travel. Their content focuses on family travel, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, wild places and national parks, sustainable travel and stories revealing the authentic qualities of a region. Product reviews and hotel reviews are not allowed.
Though their website does not confirm the pay rates, some writers have mentioned it to be 50 cents a word for 1000 word features.
NationSwell is based in New York City. It looks for freelance writers who deliver impactful narratives about organizations and people solving America’s problems. Depending on the subject matter and your experience, they pay between 50-65 cents. You can make submissions using this link.
ABM is the in-flight magazine for Alaska Airlines, published on a monthly basis. It looks for a strong narrative flow, anecdotes and vivid visual images in the submissions. You’re good as gold to them if your content lends inside perspective to the travel and destination columns, covers business with style and insight or has a sense of humour.
For short articles (200-600 words) in the journal section, you can fetch $150 – $ 250. Business shorts (up to 500 words) get paid $150. Columns up to 1600 words can fetch $500 and long features up to $700 (2000-2500 words). They currently do not entertain book reviews, poetry or fiction.
If you can write nutrition with a science-based, news like approach, EatingWell might want you. The readers are interested beyond nutrition and cooking science. They gravitate towards social issues related to food and its origin. Follow the format of past columns and explain why you’re pitching the topic to increase your chances of scoring a gig.
They pay up to $1 per word and take one-page stories of maximum 500 words.
Curbed focuses on homes, their design, architecture, urban planning and real estate. It seeks narrative stories and long-form pitches digging deep on preferred topics. You can do report pieces, trend analysis or personal essays.
Though not specified, the submission guidelines confirm competitive pay rates for content. Feature submissions can range between 3000-6000. Writers can fetch between 20-54 cents a word for assignments. At this rate, the minimum per article shall be $600.
If you think like a writer and if you can write, you have some great opportunities to earn as a freelance writer. So, check out these magazines and pitch your ideas to them.
There is always a better way to find value for your work, and it’s worth working for long hours for such magazines than doing cheap gigs.
Additionally, it will help you build your credibility as a writer.