How To Make Money Writing Short Stories: Best Ways to Sell Online

Do you love to write? Are you looking for a way to make some extra money? If so, then you may want to consider writing short stories.

Short stories can be a great way to make money, and they are also a lot of fun to write.

In this blog post, I’ll discuss how to make money writing short stories.

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I’ll also provide some tips for getting started. So if you’re interested in learning more, keep reading!

This post is for general informational and educational purposes only. You can read the full disclaimer for more information.

Understand the different types of short stories

One of the first things you need to do when learning how to make money writing short stories is to understand the different types of short stories.

There are several types of short stories:

Fables: A fable is a short story that typically features animals or inanimate objects as the main characters. The moral of the story is usually clear, and fables are often used to teach lessons. If you’re interested in writing fables, I recommend checking out sites like Boyds Mills Press and Flashlight press.

Flash Fiction: These are very short stories, typically less than 1000 words. They can be a great way to get started writing, and make some extra cash. If you’re interested in writing flash fiction, I recommend checking out sites like Vestal Review, Flash Fiction Online, and SmokeLong Quarterly.

Short Stories: These are slightly longer than flash fiction, typically between 1000 and 7000 words. They can be harder to sell than flash fiction, but they can also be more lucrative. If you are interested in writing short stories, we recommend checking out sites like The Threepenny review, Strange Horizons, and One Story.

Frame Story: A frame story is a type of short story that features multiple characters telling their own stories. The stories are often interconnected, and the frame story itself typically serves as a introduction or conclusion to the other stories. If you’re interested in writing frame stories, I recommend checking out small and independent short story publishers. Traditional publishers are often reluctant to work with collections of short stories. Though some Indie presses are willing to consider short story collections.

Story Sequence: The term “story sequence” refers to a composition of short stories that combine together to create a longer narrative. However, each story is considered as an independent short work. It’s also known as a composite novel or short story cycle.

Short story genres

There are plenty of different genres of short stories, but some common types are the following:

  • Literary short story: These are stories that focus on the literary elements of style, plot, and character development. They often explore complex themes and ideas.
  • Satire: A satire is a type of short story that uses humor or irony to critique people, institutions, or events.
  • Mystery: A mystery is a type of short story that revolves around a puzzle or suspenseful plot.
  • Horror: Horror stories are designed to scare or disgust readers. They often involve supernatural elements or spine-tingling suspense.
  • Romance: A romance is a type of short story that typically features two lovers who must overcome obstacles to be together.
  • Adventure: An adventure story is one in which the protagonist goes on an exciting journey full of challenges and surprises.

Other popular genres include comedy, drama, science fiction, thriller/suspense, and western.

Learn how to come up with ideas for stories

Now that you understand the different types of short stories, it’s time to start brainstorming ideas for your own stories.

Here are a few tips to get you started:

  1. Look for inspiration in your everyday life. Oftentimes, the best stories are based on real events or people.
  2. Pay attention to the news. What’s happening in the world? Is there something you’re passionate about or concerned with? These topics can make for great stories.
  3. Think about your own experiences. What are some of the most memorable moments from your life? These can be the basis for great stories.
  4. Talk to people you know. Everyone has a story to tell. By talking to the people in your life, you may be able to get some great ideas for stories.
  5. Read, read, read! The more you read, the better you’ll be at identifying what makes a great story. Reading will also give you a better understanding of the different types of short stories and how to write them.

How to write a story that is well-crafted and interesting

Once you have an idea for your story, it’s time to start writing.

Here are a few tips to help you write a well-crafted and interesting story:

  • Develop your characters. Your characters should be fully developed and believable. They should have their own motivations, desires, and flaws.
  • Create a compelling plot. Your story should have a clear beginning, middle, and end. There should be conflict and suspense throughout.
  • Pay attention to your setting. Your story’s setting should be well developed and contribute to the overall tone of the story.
  • Use strong description. Your descriptions should be vivid and help readers to visualize the story in their minds.
  • Edit, edit, edit! Once you’ve finished writing your story, be sure to edit it thoroughly. This will help to ensure that your story is the best it can be.

You can also use a tool called Jasper AI to help you write your short stories. It’s one of the best AI writing assistants out there.

It can help you to come up with ideas, develop characters, create plots, and edit your stories.

You can outline your next piece and write an engaging, creative story in less time. If you want to sell more stories and make more money, then you need to start using Jasper AI.

Websites and magazines that pay for short stories

The following list of publishers are some of the best places for short story writers to make submissions:

The Threepenny Review is an American literary magazine. They accept fiction, memoirs, poetry, and essays. Submissions are not read during the last two-thirds of the year (May through December). Currently, The Threepenny Review is paying $400 per story or article, $200 per poem or Table Talk piece.

The Sun Magazine is an independent, ad-free magazine. They accept personal essays, short stories, interviews, poetry, and photographs. You can make your submission online. The Sun Magazine is paying for Personal Essays-$300 to $2,000, Fiction- $300 to $2,000, and for Poetry- $100 to $250.

Flash Fiction Online is an online professional ezine. They accept science fiction, fantasy, slipstream, horror, and literary fiction. Flash Fiction Online pays $80 for original fiction (8¢/word at minimum) and 2¢/word for reprints.

The Virginia Quarterly Review (VQR) is an award-winning journal. They accept poetry, short fiction, and non-fiction. VQR pays $200 per poem, up to 4 poems; for a suite of 5 or more poems, they usually pay $1,000. For short fiction, they generally pay $1,000 and above. 

Reader’s Digest is America’s fourth largest-circulation magazine brand. They pay for stories, anecdotes and jokes. Though I was unable to find their rates. You can submit a true story about you, in 100 words or less. If it’s chosen by their editors for publication in their print magazine, you’ll be paid $100. Or you can submit examples of generous and open-hearted deeds and they pay up to $150.

Clarkesworld is a fantasy and science fiction magazine. They accept short stories, interviews, articles, audio fiction, and artwork. Clarkesworld pays 12¢ per word for fiction, 10¢ per word for non-fiction, and $350 for artwork.

Strange Horizons is a weekly magazine about speculative fiction. They publish fiction, poetry, reviews, essays, interviews, and art. Strange Horizons pays 10¢/word for fiction, $50 for a non-fiction column, and $200 for original artwork to accompany a story.

Ploughshares is a quarterly literary journal. They accept poems, short stories, personal essays, long-form fiction, and nonfiction. Ploughshares pays $45 per journal page; minimum payment is $90 and maximum payment is $450. They pay $450 for the long-form issue.

One Story is a literary print magazine. They accept literary fiction stories between 3,000 and 8,000 words. One Story pays $500 and 25 contributors copies.

Analog’s Science Fiction and Fact magazine is a market for science fiction stories. Analog pays 8¢-10¢ per word for short fiction, 6¢ per word for serials, 9¢ per word for fact articles, and $1 per line for poetry.

The New Yorker is considered to be a influential world renowned magazine. They accept fiction, poetry, cartoon, shouts & murmurs and daily shout submissions. You can contact them for their pay rates.

Duotrope isn’t a publication company but a resource for writers and artists. They help you save time finding publishers or literary agents, so you can focus on creating.

Provide up to date publication and agent listings. They also offer submission trackers, custom searches, and deadline calendars.

Submit your story to literary journals, magazines, and online publications

Research the publications you’re submitting to so you know what they like. It may help to read other stories in the genre you’re writing in so you can get an idea of what editors are looking for.

Make sure to follow their submission guidelines exactly. Most publications will have specific formatting and length requirements, along with how they accept submissions (ex. online only).

Proofread your story multiple times before sending it off. Nothing will make an editor reject a story faster than typos or grammatical errors.

Submit your story to as many publications as possible. The more you submit, the more likely you are to get accepted somewhere.

New writers can start by submitting their work to smaller publications, then move up to bigger ones. And be patient – it may take a while to get published, but it’s worth it when you do!

Once accepted, if a publisher retains the copyright to your work, they have the exclusive right to publish and distribute it. That means you won’t be able to sell it anywhere else, or even give it away for free.

It’s important to read over any contracts you sign with a publisher carefully, and make sure you understand how the copyright situation will work.

You may be able to negotiate for the copyright to revert back to you after a certain amount of time, or for certain rights (like the right to sell foreign language translations).

If you’re not happy with the terms a publisher is offering, don’t be afraid to walk away from the deal.

Don’t get discouraged-keep writing and submitting your work!

Other ways to make money writing short stories

Of course there’s other way to make money writing short stories. You can sell your short stories as e-books or paperback books.

A great place to sell your stories is Amazon or other online bookstores.

You could also self publish your stories on websites like Wattpad. Or create a website and sell your stories directly to readers.

Another option is to submit your stories to anthologies or short story contests. If your story is selected, you’ll receive a cash prize and publication credit.

This can help you build your portfolio and attract the attention of literary agents or editors at publishing houses.

You could also give readings of your stories at bookstores, libraries, or other venues. This is a great way to connect with your audience and build a following for your work.

While there you can sell merchandise related to your stories, like t-shirts, mugs, or tote bags, to create a sense of community.

Another good place to make money is to start freelancing and offer your services to businesses and individuals.

You can use an online platform like Upwork or Fivver to find clients who need help with content writing. This could be anything from stories and blog posts to website copy, social media posts, or even email marketing campaigns.

Jasper AI can help here too, if you’re looking to create unique and engaging content for yourself or your client.

Polish your writing skills

No matter how good you are at writing, there’s always room for improvement. A good writer takes the time to edit their story multiple times until it’s the best it can be.

Pay attention to your grammar and punctuation, as well as the overall flow of your story. Are there any parts that feel choppy or out of place?

Make sure your story is engaging from beginning to end, and that your characters are fully developed. Are they relatable and likable? Do they have depth and dimension, or are they one-dimensional?

It’s also important to make sure your story is unique. What makes it stand out from other stories in the same genre?

Taking the time to perfect your writing will make a big difference in how successful your stories are.

If you’re not sure how to edit your own work, there are plenty of editing services available online. You can also ask a friend or family member to read over your story and give you their feedback.

Market your work and build a platform as a writer.

One of the best ways to market your work is to build a platform as a writer. This can be done by creating a website or your own blog, and using social media to share your work with potential readers.

Another way to build a platform is to guest post on other websites and blogs related to your topic. This will help you reach a new audience, and build a following in your niche.

You can be a guest on a podcast or write commentary for your local paper.

Finally, you can also offer workshops to help promote your work. This is a great way to connect with potential readers, and give them a taste of your writing.

By following these tips, you can build a platform that will help you market your work and make money writing short stories.

In sum, how to make money writing short stories

This blog post offers several tips on how to make money writing short stories.

Such as submitting your stories to literary magazines and online publications or self publishing and selling your stories on place like Amazon.

The post also emphasizes the importance of polishing your writing skills and marketing your work.

By following these tips, you can build a platform that will help you market your work and make money writing short stories.

Happy writing!

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