Get Paid to Write Articles: 10 Magazines That Pay $500 or More

Get Paid to Write Articles: 10 Magazines That Pay $500 or More

As a freelance writer, it can be a struggle to find high-quality paying work.

It often seems like the only options available are $5-per-article scams and work from content mills, which can seem like good opportunities — until you check your bank account balance and realize it’ll take ages before your hard work adds up into real earnings.

While finding quality paying work is difficult, it isn’t impossible. In fact, there are lots of publications that will pay you a premium to write for them.

It isn’t necessarily easy to get into these publications, and it may take time and experience to build up your writing to a level that will help you get paid these rates. But you can take solace in the fact that writing work exists beyond content mills and low paying gigs.

While there are probably tens of thousands of magazines that pay writers, a much smaller number compensate writers really well.

Here are 10 magazines that will pay $500 or more for an article.

1. Early American Life

History buffs, take heed. This print mag focusing on early American style, decorating, and traditions publishes seven times yearly and welcomes the fresh voices of new writers.

You can submit both shorter stories and features, which run about 2,500 words. The editors estimate a $500 payment for “a first feature from a new writer,” with the opportunity for higher earnings as your skills develop.

2. Catholic Digest

Lifestyle magazine Catholic Digest wants writers with a positive and encouraging voice who write from experience.

Their features are approximately 1,500 words and cover marriage, parenting, spirituality, and relationships, along with parish and work life. The magazine pays $500 for features, upon publication.

3. Earth Island Journal

Earth Island Journal wants “compelling and distinctive stories that anticipate environmental concerns before they become pressing problems.” It covers a wide variety of environmental issues including wildlife and land conservation, environmental public policy, climate and energy, animal rights, and environmental justice.

If you’re an international traveler, it’s a great opportunity: Earth Island is especially hungry for “On-the-ground reports from outside North America.” The magazine pays 25 cents per word for its print stories, which equates to about $750-$1,000 for in-depth features (about 4,000 words).

You can also pitch a shorter online report, especially if you’re a newer writer. While they only pay $100 a piece, the journal publishes five times daily and is “always looking for fresh ideas.”

4. VQR

VQR is a journal of literature and discussion with a focus on publishing the best writing they can find.

For poetry, it pays $200 per poem (up to four). If they accept a group of five or more poems, you’ll earn $1,000. Prose pays around 25 cents per word. Book reviews earn $500 for 2,000-2,400 words. VQR has limited reading periods, so check the schedule online before you submit.

5. AMC Outdoors Magazine

AMC Outdoors magazine covers outdoor recreation, education, and conservation topics throughout the Northern Appalachian region, which includes states from Maine to Virginia.

It pays about $750 for features, which usually range from 2,000 to 2,500 words. “We are always on the lookout for stories that have a unique hook, showcase an outdoor sport in a new and exciting way, offer a tangible sense of place and meaning, or profile individuals with unique approaches to conservation in the Northeast,” senior editor Marc Chalufour notes on AMC Outdoor’s submissions page.

You can also pitch a shorter story for one of its departments, which pay $150 to $350 based on the length and complexity of the work.

6. The Sun Magazine

The Sun Magazine is looking for essays, interviews, fiction and poetry. They prefer personal writing but they also accept pieces about political and cultural issues.

The Sun pays $300 to $2,000 for essays and interviews, $300 to $1,500 for fiction, and $100 to $200 for poetry. If your work is accepted, you’ll also get a complimentary one-year subscription.

7. Boys’ Life

This general-interest monthly magazine has been published by the Boy Scouts of America since 1911, and pays its writers between $500-$1,500 for nonfiction articles of as many words.

As far as what to write about, there aren’t too many limits. “We cover everything from professional sports to American history to how to pack a canoe,” read the submission guidelines. Most of all, it should be entertaining to the scouts it’s aimed at.

“Write for a boy you know who is 12,” the editors suggest.

8. The American Gardener

The American Gardener is the official publication of the American Horticultural Society, and it caters to “experienced amateur gardeners.”

It seeks writers for horticulturalist profiles, and articles about innovative approaches to garden design, plant conservation, horticultural therapy, and biodiversity, among others.

It pays $300 – $600 for feature articles, which usually run 1,500 to 2,500 words. The magazine sometimes offers travel and expense reimbursement.

9. One Story

One Story is a literary magazine that features one story per issue, and it is mailed to subscribers every 3 – 4 weeks.

One Story looks for literary fiction in the range of 3,000 – 8,000 words, and stories can be on any subject “as long as they are good.” It offers $500 and 25 copies of the magazine for every accepted contribution, but submissions are only accepted between September and May.

10. The American Scholar

Quarterly magazine The American Scholar publishes everything from essays to fiction to poetry on public affairs, literature, science, history, and culture. 

It will pay up to $500 for accepted pieces, and if you want to go the digital route, it will pay up to $250 for web-only pieces. Note, however, that The American Scholar does not accept pitches through email — only through online submissions manager system Submittable.

The original version of this story was written by Bamidele Onibalusi. We updated the post so it’s more useful for our readers.

Photo via Federico Rostagno/ Shutterstock 

Filed Under: Freelancing


  • Opal Colvin says:

    Hello Bamidele. Thank you so much for this wonderful information. I was only aware that 2 of these publications accepted material, and was not aware of some of the things that could be submitted even to those I knew about. This is a great service that you are providing and I appreciate it very much.

  • John Kennedy says:

    I would like to write for your magazine on the theme of Metaphysics magic and the paranormal.
    I have studied and researched these topics since I was eight years old. I am now fifty two.
    I look forward to your reply.
    Yours sincerely.
    John Kennedy

  • Opal Colvin says:

    Thank you very much for this good information. I haven’t been submitting work for a while, and I really appreciate the list of who is accepting now. You have several listed that I was not aware of or might not have even been taking outside material when I was writing a few years ago. I hope you know that you are very appriciated.

  • princess says:

    I’m a young lady who like and enjoy writing ,and how can I writing for your magazine short stories

  • Himanshu singh says:

    I am 23 year old engineering pass out student from india. Usually I am not a writer because i have never written for any publisher and never published my own Hindi poem or ideas related to spirituality and indian social vallues and also on the impact of international attacks and foreigner legacy on all over indian culture. I put my own ideas and experiences gained from small practical daily schedule works and correlation with our Hindu Holly book The Geeta thaughts. I always tries to prove all those things in our daily life which looks like a pushing to mountain. Can you please advice me what type of writing should i follow to be an internatinal entertainer and also a prosperous.

  • Mikky says:

    I’ve followed this post and seen all comments. First I’ll have to say a “great work” you’ve done here.

    Well, I’m a writer striving for excellence. However, this question goes to all who either have 20years experience in writing or just searching for options if writing would be a great one. What’s the essence of writing an article? And what’s the assurance that your published article will be visited only by English scholars whose intent is not to get the message but to fetch out the errors?

    I believe if my readers could understand the message I sent then the purpose of my article is achieved. So tell me, what role does 100% grammatical construction play here? In fact, about 80% visitors to any website aren’t America native speakers so why must your writing meet America native writing standard? Why do you think you’ve not sent your message if you’ve not written in America native writing standard? I think what matters most is the message being sent and to whom it’s sent. I’m a writer writing for top websites who takes delight not in the construction but have much focus on the idea or your message. For me I strongly hold the fact that whether a website is paying you for writing or you just submit your article to impact positively on your readers, they should have editors who amend your little or much mistakes and help the message out to the readers.

    If you ever have to criticise anyone’s writing, please let it be constructive. Beside, these commands don’t show up in your speaking.

  • ali says:

    i want to write articles relevant to IT (Information Technology). please tell me how and where i can write.

  • Bamidele, for ever grateful to you for sharing these information with us. You are blessed. So, we still have good-spirited human beings like you around. Thanks a lot

  • hal rothberg says:

    some of what’s here sounds like dialog for a soap opera whose lead characters are
    writers. but, granted, this is one kind of wordsmithing and it promotes learning.
    i’ve written a funny article on ….. best not to reveal. any suggestions as to where to take it, who’s looking for humor, including sun? as fred allen once wrote, yours until jimmy hoffa’s body is found. (for those old enough)

  • Yamna Sabir says:

    hello, i have experience of writing for magazine

  • gadgetssai says:

    Hi… Bamidele Onibalusi

    I really like your articles, I read and wrote articles in your articles so much information is there.. I like this article about ‘write for us’ topic it’s really appreciate thank you for your valuable information

  • DianeJ says:

    Hi Bamidele,

    Great post. I have a question. In the open period for Glimmer Train do they waive the submittal fee? Each time I’ve looked to submit to them in the past, there has been a fee.


  • muhammad Ather says:

    I am muhammad ather from Pakistan. It’s good to see that there are so many sources of earning being a writer. But i have some issues:
    1. Payment Issue:
    I have skrill,payoneer and payza accounts. I dont have a paypal account becaue it does not support my country.
    2. Can i write for these magazines from Pakistan.
    I would like you to answer me positively.
    Thank you.

  • Yamna Sabir says:

    Hi every one my name is Yamna Sabir i am from Pakistan I have done Bs Hons Mass Communication and i am interested in writing stories and features for the magazines. kindly guide me through this i want to write for THE SUN magazine

  • Anum says:

    That is a great read! I am looking for writing jobs. It is hard to fine genuine people though.

  • I have so much free time doing absolutely nothing productive, that I ended up writing this sentence.

  • RotouelTigues says:

    Hello. Jas,I am interested in writing fr your magazine. How can I contact you directly?

  • Thanks Bamidele for sharing, quite helpful

  • Tash says:

    Thanks for your research, it is much appreciated.

  • Thanks so much friends. I really enjoyed and appreciate the comments I read on the page.
    However, I am new here and I wish to join this great community. Thus, there are some pending issues which i would loved to be clarify.
    1. Is there any address where one can possibly submit his article?
    2. Will I be charge for the written article. and if i will be charge for, how much does it cost and can I pay with my local currency?
    3. What are the criteria for writing an article?

  • Bhajan says:

    Its one of the best posts full of good resources on writing content. I have not visited all of the sites yet but I am going to check them all one by one. Thank you so much.

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