More really, really good short stories


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If you live near a bookstore with a good periodicals section, you may have noticed that there are many, many, many literary journals and magazines. Which might be good to read? It’s a matter of taste, but the ones that make regular appearances in the ‘Best American Short Stories’ series and the ‘Pushcart Prize’ anthologies definitely make for a trusty beginning. That’s why we recently linked to all the magazines that provided the short stories found in the new anthologies ‘The Best American Short Stories 2008’ and ‘Pushcart Prize XXXIII.’

Each book also includes a list of close-but-not-quite stories -- ‘100 Distinguished Stories’ in Best American, ‘Special Mention.’ Below, we’re linking to all of the magazines in these long lists, with the number of commendations (P designates ‘Pushcart,’ BA, ‘Best American’).


It’s necessary to note that this compiled list of runners-up, no matter how long, is not exhaustive. The anthologies have different selection methodologies and will, inevitably, leave out some wonderful work. Plus, this list focuses only on fiction, leaving out nonfiction/essay and poetry. Nevertheless, it indicates some magazines that might be worth your fiction dollars. In commendation order:

The New Yorker (BA-11)

The Southern Review (BA-5, P-2)

Tin House (BA-5, P-4)

Ploughshares (BA-4, P-3)

Virginia Quarterly Review (BA-4, P-3)


Antioch Review (BA-4, P-2)

Conjunctions (BA-3, P-3)

Epoch (BA-2, P-3)

Kenyon Review (BA-4, P-1)

McSweeney’s (BA-3, P-2)

One Story (BA-2, P-3)


Paris Review (BA-4, P-1)

TriQuarterly (BA-1, P-4)

Zoetrope: All-Story (BA-3, P-2)

After the jump: dozens more magazines.

American Short Fiction (BA-2, P-2)

Colorado Review (BA-2, P-2)


Glimmer Train (BA-1, P-3)

Mississippi Review (BA-2, P-2)

Missouri Review (BA-2, P-2)

New England Review (BA-2, P-2)

Prairie Schooner (BA-2, P-2)

A Public Space (BA-1, P-3)


Yale Review (BA-2, P-2)

Five Points (BA-1, P-2)

Iowa Review (BA-2, P-1)

Narrative Magazine (BA-1, P-2)

Shenandoah (BA-1, P-2)

Agni (P-3)


The Atlantic (BA-3)

Crazyhorse (P-3)

Bomb (BA-1, P-1)

Cimarron Review (BA-1, P-1)

Crab Orchard Review (BA-1, P-1)

Ecotone (BA-1, P-1)


Gettysburg Review (BA-1, P-1)

Harvard Review (BA-1, P-1)

Massachusetts Review (BA-1, P-1)

Michigan Quarterly Review (BA-1, P-1)

Oxford American (BA-1, P-1)

StoryQuarterly (BA-1, P-1)

Appalachian Heritage (P-2)


Bellevue Literary Review (P-2)

Boulevard (P-2)

Callaloo (P-2)

Georgia Review (P-2)

Harper’s Magazine (P-2)

Noon (P-2)


Raritan (P-2)

Sewanee Review (P-2)

Subtropics (BA-2)

Witness (P-2)

Alaska Quarterly Review (P-1)

Arts and Letters (P-1)


Black Warrior Review (BA-1)

Caribbean Writer (P-1)

Chatahoochee Review (P-1)

Cincinnati Review (P-1)

Daedalus (BA-1)

Event (P-1)


Faultline (P-1)

Fiction (P-1)

Fiction International (P-1)

Florida Review (BA-1)

Folio (P-1)

The Hopkins Review (P-1)


Hudson Review (P-1)

Image (P-1)

Nimrod (P-1)

North American Review (P-1)

Northwest Review (P-1)

Ontario Review (P-1)


Other Voices (P-1)

Passages North (P-1)

Pleiades (P-1)

Redivider (P-1)

Relief (P-1)

Rivendell (P-1)


Rosebud (P-1)

Santa Monica Review (BA-1)

sic (P-1)

Sonora Review (BA-1)

Southampton Review (P-1)

Southwest Review (P-1)


Stone Canoe (P-1)

Third Coast (P-1)

Water-Stone (P-1)

West Branch (P-1)

-- Carolyn Kellogg