A Teen’s Guide to Getting Published

With blogs, Twitter, and Facebook, it is very easy for anyone with internet access to publish almost anything online. A few keystrokes and a push of a button are all it takes for you to post a blog post, update, or reply on any number of sites. However, despite the convenience of these tools, there is something infinitely more rewarding when seeing your writing go out under the auspices of a respected publication.

“But wait,” you might be thinking to yourself, “Who would want to publish work by high school students?” Actually, there are a number of journals that focus on publishing outstanding analytic and creative work by high school students. However, before you click “Submit” or send in a paper to one of the publications below, here are some guidelines to help you present your best work:

  • Be certain to check the publication’s submissions guidelines. It doesn’t matter how excellent your creative nonfiction piece about the school dance is if you are submitting it to a journal that only publishes analytical papers.
  • Send in the most polished draft possible, and make certain to have at least one person carefully proof your writing. This seems like common sense, but you’d be surprised how easy it is for typos or inconsistencies to slip into your writing and go unnoticed.
  • Adhere to the word/page limits set by the publication. Sending in your 20,000 word opus to a publication that is looking for 2,000 word articles will only frustrate the editors.
  • Appearance matters, so use conventional fonts, ink colors, and sizes. In other words, don’t submit a paper using Comic Sans or other unconventional fonts.

Some Publications that Specialize in High School Student Writing

  • The Claremont Review is a Canada-based journal that publishes poetry, short stories, and short plays written by young adults (ages 13-19). They also accept artwork for their publication.
  • The Concord Review publishes secondary students’ academic writing on any historical topic.
  • Polyphony H.S. is a student-run literary magazine that accepts poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Be certain to check out their very helpful FAQs and Submissions Guidelines pages, which have excellent advice for any aspiring writer hoping to get published.
  • Teen Ink, a Newton-based magazine, book series, and website, accepts writing (both fiction and non-fiction), art, photography, and videos from teens.
  • Teen Voices is a Boston-based, non-profit organization that focuses on supporting and educating teen girls. They accept a variety of submissions, including poetry, memoir, essays, reviews, and original art.

Please feel free to share your experiences on our Facebook page or here in the comments. Happy writing, and good luck!

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