26 Horror Short Story Publishers Seeking Submissions

***Please note, there has been an uptick in publishers that are not accepting unagented submissions. Too many presses and publishers are getting mass submissions that do not fit their catalogs. DO NOT submit your work if it doesn’t fit the publisher’s guidelines.

With Halloween on its way, many short story publishers are looking for some bump in the night stories. Enter this list of 26 presses looking for horror stories.

There’s a little bit of something for everyone, as most of these publishers also accept work from other genres – as long as they contain horror elements. So come on in and take a gander at the offerings.

May the publishing gods favor you with publishing credits.

26 Short Story Publishers with Submission Calls

This list contains 26 short story publishers that are actively seeking horror submissions. Many of these publishers pay writers for their work, and some also accept poetry and nonfiction.

Apex Magazine

Apex is a popular magazine of science fictionfantasy, and horror, and their stories have been nominated for and won significant awards. They are open now for submissions and pay professional SFWA rates. You can check out the full details here.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: up to 7,500 words.
  • Pay: $0.08 per word, and an additional $0.01 per word if the story is a podcast.
Apex Magazine is a short story publishers

Oscillate Wildly Press: The Asylum Diaries

This Australian press triennially publishes The Asylum Diaries magazine. They want body horror fiction and poetry for The Asylum Diaries: Autopsy, and cosmic horror fiction for The Asylum Diaries: Akhram (for the latter, stories have to be structured on Lovecraft’s writing style – see guidelines). You can check out the full submissions guidelines here

  • Deadline: year-round
  • Length: up to 7,500 words
  • Pay AU$15

Red Cape Publishing: A-Z of Horror

They are (and will be) reading for several horror fiction anthologies. Until September 30, 2020, they’re reading on the G is for Genie theme (“Think about wishes gone wrong, a disobedient genie, or even from the perspective of a disgruntled Djinn.”).

From October 1 to November 15, 2020, they will be reading for the H is for Hell theme (“experiences of Hell, whether that be a literal interpretation of fire and brimstone or a hellish situation.”).

To find out more about these and upcoming themes, check out their submission guidelines here.

  • Deadlines: September 30, 2020, for G is for Genie; October 1 to November 15, 2020, for H is for Hell.
  • Length: between 4,000 and 8,000 words.
  • Pay: £10

The Dark Sire

This online literary journal publishes short fiction, poetry, and art. They want work by authors and artists who delve into the mystery, psychosis, suspense, and looming darkness of the fantasy, gothic, horror, and psychological realms. Suitable subject matter may include but is not limited to vampires, monsters, old castles, dragons, magic, mental illness, hell, disease, or decay of society.

For horror, their guidelines say:

“Blood, violence, and adult language is permitted, as is monsters, devils, angels, and killers. Slasher friendly. Influence includes Shelley and King.”

For psychological work, their guidelines say:

“Special interest in psychological horror tales with deep, inner character development. Influence includes Dostoevsky.”

Read their guidelines carefully – they require both an online form submission and an emailed query letter. You can find the details here and here

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: up to 5,000 words for fiction; and up to two pages for poetry
  • Pay: N/A

Black Poppy Review

This literary arts journal publishes flash fiction, mini chapbooks, and poetry. Here’s what the editors have to say:

“[Work] of a darker nature. All is not as it seems at Black Poppy. […] Find the key. Unlock the creaky gate on rusted hinges. Explore the dilapidated, mossy grounds. Discover hidden paths and nooks which lead to words that linger and haunt–poems of abandonment, discovery, enchantment, flora & fauna, ghosts, isolation, memories, nature, weathering, wonder, and the otherwise forgotten.”

They are partial to poems about ancient gardens, abandoned manors, and dark forests. Submissions are accepted on a rolling basis. You can find the full details here.

  • Deadline: rolling submissions
  • Length: One to three flash fiction stories of up to 750 words; poetry one to two poem of 35 lines or less
  • Pay: N/A

Dread Imaginings

This is a new online fiction magazine. The editor wants stories “that present your protagonist’s encounter with the horrific, disturbing, uncanny, weird, macabre, and/or grotesque.”

Creature-features are also welcome, but your own monsters will probably be an easier sell than vampires, zombies, werewolves, etc. Make sure you check out the submission guidelines for the kind of work the editor wants. You can find all of the pertinent details here.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: up to 4,000 words
  • Pay: $0.01 per word

96th of October

This new quarterly magazine (their first issue was in Summer 2020) reads horror, science fiction, and fantasy. They also accept poetry and artwork. You can find out more about them here.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: Fiction – 1,000 to 10,000 words; Poetry – must be able to read them in 5 minutes or less.
  • Pay: they do not pay at this time but want to in the future.
Autumn 2020 Issue Cover

The Arcanist

The Arcanist publishes flash fiction in science fiction and fantasy only (and their sub-genres, including horror), and essays. They love humorous works, horrifying works, and timely works. They do not want excessive gore, among a few other things, so make sure you check out their submissions guidelines. You can find all of that information here.

  • Deadline: open to submissions year-round
  • Length: Fiction – up to 1,000 words; essays between 1,000 and 3,000 words
  • Pay: $50 for fiction; $25 for essays

War Monkey Publications: From the Yonder Volume 2

This is a horror short story collection of regional legends and tall tales from around the world. Stories must be based upon a regional or cultural legend or tall tale from any location or culture. “Regional” can be a specific place or a broader region.

The inclusion of other genres’ elements is welcome, as long as the story is a horror story. Ghosts, hauntings, alien abductions, monsters, demons, spirits, witches, etc. are all acceptable, as long as the subject is based on an actual legend or tall tale.

If you’re looking to submit or want to find out more, click here.

  • Deadline: October 15, 2020.
  • Length: 1,000 to 7,500 words
  • Pay: $10 per short story.

Perpetual Motion Publishing Newsletter

Perpetual Motion wants horror flash fiction to publish in their newsletter. Accepted pieces will also be published in a future issue of Dark Moon Digest. Writers are encouraged to send in tales reminiscent of The Twilight Zone, Black Mirror, Tales from the Crypt, and Tales from the Darkside. 

Their guidelines say:

“We want stories with complex characters and ideas spun in ways nobody’s ever conceived. Make our brains hurt [and] our hearts explode with love and terror. Make us fear.” 

You can submit your work and read their submission guidelines here.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: up to 1,500 words.
  • Pay: $25

Hypnos Magazine

This magazine publishes science fiction, fantasy, and horror. They are looking for original, thought-provoking weird fiction, and they prefer longer, more complex work to flash fiction.

Their guidelines also say:

“We do not automatically reject submissions because of violent, obscene, or otherwise offensive content. We are not, by any means, seeking such works, but we do not reject submissions simply because some readers might, theoretically, find them upsetting.” 

You can get the full details here.

  • Deadline: year-round
  • Length: up to 10,000 words
  • Pay: $0.01 per word

Corpus Press: In Darkness, Delight – Fear the Future

For this anthology, their guidelines say,

“We seek truly terrifying stories that deal with futuristic themes, set in the near future or far. Tales can be Earth-based or extraterrestrial, perhaps featuring technological or social upheavals that have frightful implications for individuals or society at large. As examples, the ongoing erosion of privacy and enduring nature of online activity, artificial human enhancement via DNA manipulation or implants, the impact of emerging technologies on developing children, and so on.

Post-apocalyptic stories will not be accepted. Rather, we desire fiction that occurs during periods preceding any total collapse, be they stable or unstable times. The horrors that await us in utopian futures may be far more chilling and fascinating than those endemic to dystopias, and therein lies our primary interest.”

You can check out their full submissions guidelines here

  • Deadline: November 15, 2020.
  • Length: they prefer stories between 2,500 and 4,500 words, but will accept up to 7,500 words.
  • Pay: $0.03 per word, capped at $150.

Black Hare Press: Various Anthologies

Black Hare is publishing various anthologies with different deadlines, and some of these accept horror. The themes include Play (horror toys) and Haunt. Please see their guidelines for further information.

  • Deadline: Play – October 22, 2020; Haunt – December 24, 2020.
  • Length: Play – must be exactly 500 words; Haunt – must be exactly 500 words. You can send up to two stories per theme.
  • Pay: N/A

Sliced Up Press: Slashertorte – An Anthology of Cake Horror

They want short stories involving cake for their debut horror anthology. Here’s what they’re looking for:

“Delicious as cake might be, we want you to bring out the darker side of baked goods and give us something scary, disturbing or just plain wrong.”

You can check out the full submission guidelines here.

  • Deadline: November 1, 2020, or until filled.
  • Length: up to 2,000 words.
  • Pay: $0.01 per word.

Menacing Hedge

This quarterly magazine publishes short stories, poetry, and art that gives them a “strange tingly rushing feeling.” Their guidelines say:

“Genres that tickle our fancy are horror, slipstream, magical realism, and science fiction, with styles that lean toward humorous, absurdism, experimental, literary, bizarro, quirky, and surreal.”

Please see the guidelines for the editors’ preferences and the kind of work they do not want.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: they prefer 1,000 to 3,000 words, and works over 5,000 words will be considered
  • Pay: N/A

LOM Media: Nightmares & Phantasms Podcast

This is a podcast of scary stories and horrifying true tales. They only accept one story per submission and only one story per month, and you can get all of the details here.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: between 1,000 and 6,000 words.
  • Pay: $5

The NoSleep Podcast

They want horror stories for their podcast, written from a first-person perspective. Stories should provide good audio cues and make good use of dialogue. They would like to see more script submissions – formats written as an audio drama starring two or more characters, with more being preferred. Dramas should ideally last 20 to 40 minutes.

Their flash-fiction submissions are closed right now, but the other categories are open. You can find out more here.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: short fiction – between 1,200 and 2,500 words; regular submissions – at least 2,500 words minimum.
  • Pay: $100 for short fiction; $125 for regular submissions

The Wicked Library

This horror anthology podcast wants fiction submissions for Season 10. Their guidelines say:

“We really enjoy first person stories, and we are interested in seeing more stories in “radio-play” scrip format, but we love traditional short story tales too. Stories should focus on character and creating a feeling of fear and unease. […] We do feature a large variety of horror from traditional ghost stories to modern horror and a lot of things in between.”

You can find the full details here.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: between 3,500 and 7,500 words.
  • Pay: N/A

The Dark Magazine

They publish horror and dark fantasy – not graphic, violent horror. The editors ask writers to try sending them with fiction that falls out of regular categories and welcome experimental works. They also accept some reprints. For more information, click here.

  • Deadline: accepting submissions on a rolling basis
  • Length: between 2,000 and 6,00 words.
  • Pay: $0.06 per word.

Sci-Fi Lampoon

They publish fantasy, science fiction, and horror-themed humor. They want flash and short fiction (up to 7,500 words), and high-res art. Here’s what the editors have to say:

“Humor. Satire. Spoof. It can be a humorous take on space operas, a satire of apocalyptic disasters, a spoof of heroic fantasies, fake ads & letters to the editor or a love advice column for human/alien couples.”

You can get the full details here.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: Flash – up to 1,000 words; short fiction – up to 7,500 words.
  • Pay: Not yet, but they’re working on it.

Year’s Best Hardcore Horror

This is a reprint market that wants hardcore horror stories published in 2020. For more information, click here.

  • Deadline: December 31, 2020.
  • Length: up to 6,000 words.
  • Pay: $0.01 per word, capped at $60.

Coffin Bell

This quarterly magazine publishes dark literature – literary horror. They publish fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, essays, short works of criticism, and artwork. You can find out more by clicking here.

  • Deadline: year-round
  • Length: Flash – five stories of up to 1,500 words; Short Stories – one story of up to 7,500 words; Poetry – up to five poems of any length.
  • Pay: Not yet, but hope to be in the future.

SBI Press: The Book of Nightmares – A Gothic Anthology for Kids

This is an anthology for writers and artists aged up to 12 years. Their guidelines say:

“This is your chance to tell the world about that creepy dream you keep having, or the scariest thing that haunted your nights when you were younger. Express yourself. Be you. No matter how weird, or silly, or scary that may be.”

You can get the full submission details here. You can also check out their guidelines for art samples, scripts, and complete graphic novels and comics.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: between 250 and 1,000 words, but they’re flexible.
  • Pay: N/A

Cemetery Gates Media: Five Themes

Cemetary Gates is looking for horror flash fiction for a “pocket-sized” anthology, and the theme of the collection is horror subgenre medley. Writers can choose a theme to write and submit a story for Cemetery Chillers, Spook Houses, Supernatural Slashers, Witchcraft, and Within the Woods. To learn more, click here.

  • Deadline: December 26, 2020, or until filled.
  • Length: Writers can submit one story for each theme, of 500 to 1,000 words.
  • Pay: $0.08 per word.

Tales from the Moonlit Path: Halloween

This is a magazine of dark, eerie, speculative stories. They also publish poetry and nonfiction. Although fiction should contain some aspect of the weak, frail, changeable human condition, horror is not a necessary element. They’re reading on the Halloween theme. You find the full details here.

  • Deadline: October 8, 2020.
  • Length: up to 2,000 words.
  • Pay: $10


This new magazine is accepting flash fiction submissions for fantasy, horror, and science fiction. They also publish fiction reprints, reviews, and essays, but it is unclear whether they pay for these. For more information, click here.

  • Deadline: unspecified
  • Length: Flash fiction – up to 1,00 words; Short stories – up to 7,500 words.
  • Pay: $0.08 per word for original fiction.
Short Story Publisher Metastellar is has published Metaphors be with you and silence

Good luck to all of you who choose to submit. I’ve got my fingers crossed for you.

And if you are accepted by one of these short story publishers, please let me know! I’d love to read your work and pass it along to a friend.

Stay safe, everyone.

Until next time.



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Danielle Adams

Danielle Adams

Danielle Adams is a writer and editor for a local marketing agency. She has formerly worked as a writer for the Investing News Network and as an editor for Whetstone, a bi-annually published literary magazine. Aside from writing, Danielle has an unabiding love for all marine life and the outdoors. She loves taking long hikes with her husband and cooking delicious meals in the kitchen.


4 Responses

  1. I would like to see screwball horror, but not like the “Scary Movie” franchise. Maybe with some family members locked in an old mansion on Halloween, and having to find a diary to unearth and burn some cursed object.
    There’s a “crazy old uncle”/retired military like Mckrosky from the old Airplane! movie. Gung-ho, unstoppable, but a little wacka-doo. There’s the vain, air-headed and selfish niece. There’s the overall good guy and and older sister and young brainiac college freshman.
    There’s specters and ghoulish creatures jumping out at them, which sprouted from the cursed okra, and they’re using super-soakers loaded with water and tomato juice(acidic) to burn them in their tracks.
    Horror can equal humor. Remember Eddie Murphy in Haunted Mansion?

      1. Just curious, have you done a blog post on outlets accepting humor writing? It seems like humor markets are few and far between, other than McSweeny’s and Points-in-case. I thought you might know some other places to try.

      2. Unfortunately, I haven’t done one on humor yet. 🙁 They do seem to be very few and far between. But if I find any I’ll let you know! 🙂

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