Featured Writing: Always Free, Always Paid - Uncharted

Current Contests

September 1 to October 31, 2023

Uncharted Magazine Novel Excerpt Prize Judged by Meg Elison

Judged by Meg Elison

CLOSED We invite writers to submit to the Uncharted Magazine Novel Excerpt Prize from September 1 to October 31, 2023. Think you’ve got an excerpt that will keep us reading and will leave us begging for more? We’re looking for the best 5,000 words or fewer of your novel in progress! We love to read […]

November 1 to November 30, 2023

Historical Fiction Challenge

Judged by Uncharted Editors

Last day to submit! Did you know that we’re now accepting historical fiction short stories? To launch this new category, we’re thrilled to announce a new writing challenge! For this challenge, we’re pleased to offer the first-place winner $500 and publication. All entries will be considered for general publication at our regular rate of $200. […]

12/1/2023 - 2/1/2024

Young Adults Write YA Contest

Judged by Theodora Goss

Young Adult literature is a cutting-edge and captivating genre, beloved by authors who choose to write for teens. YA authors build mesmerizing worlds that fascinate young, curious minds. In turn, YA is devoured by its target audience—young people who crave excitement, adventure, love, and acceptance. Now, we are giving those most intrigued by these worlds […]

Featured Writing: Always Free, Always Paid

Uncharted Magazine Novel Excerpt Prize

We invite writers to submit to the Uncharted Magazine Novel Excerpt Prize from September 1 to October 31, 2023. Think you’ve got an excerpt that will keep us reading, will leave us begging for more? We’re looking for the best 5,000 words or fewer of your novel in progress! We love to read opening chapters, climaxes, and anything in-between! Give us those scenes full of tension, crackling dialogue, and worlds we’ve never even imagined! Give us a chance to read the most captivating section of your novel—and make us want to read more! 



Uncharted Magazine publishes Science Fiction/Fantasy Short Stories from fiction writers of any background or experience. We want stories that richly imagine the future of technology and science that explore our world through a speculative lens. We want stories of fantasy that make us hunger for new worlds, new biomes, and new places we can explore through thrilling sensual details and human empathy. We want stories that thrill us, make us feel alive, and awaken our desire to explore and go on adventures.



Uncharted Magazine publishes Thriller/Mystery Short Stories from fiction writers of any background or experience. We are rolling Horror stories into this category! We want stories that keep us up at night, afraid to turn the corner. Stories that take us into the resonant fear of looming monsters and haunting ghosts. We want stories that thrill us by keeping us on the edges of our seats, hearts pounding, wondering how it will end! Stories with characters who refuse to stay in the shadows! We want stories that thrill us, make us feel alive, and awaken our desire to explore and go on adventures. We want stories of mystery that make us search for answers, for reasons, for the things that happen in the shadows.



Uncharted Magazine is excited to introduce a new submission category for publication in our magazine. We’re looking for stories that engage deeply with history. We want your characters to interact with infamous people of history, dwell deeply in past eras, and show us how the world used to operate and what lessons we can learn. We want history brought to life on our pages.


Young Adult by Voyage

Fiction: We are looking for short stories that surprise, inspire, entertain, or enlighten.
Creative Nonfiction: We are looking for personal stories that capture the nature of the teen experience. True stories that read like fiction are preferred. We read widely in YA, and we’re simply looking for a well-told personal story.



You may choose to receive editorial feedback on your piece in any category. We will provide a global letter discussing the strengths of the writing and the recommended focus for revision. We aim to make our comments actionable and encouraging. These letters are written by editors and staff readers of Uncharted Magazine.


All fiction categories are open year-round, and we do not charge any submission fees. We accept simultaneous submissions but ask that you inform us immediately and withdraw your work if your story is accepted elsewhere.

Payment: We pay our authors $200 for original fiction! We pay by check or PayPal, according to the author’s preference.

Word Count: Submitted stories should be between 1,000-5,000 words.

We will also consider previously published fiction, as long as the writer retains the rights or second-publication rights can be obtained. We do not pay for reprints.

Writers may submit one story per submission. Please wait one month after our initial reply before submitting again.

Cover letters: Cover letters are optional, but it’s nice to know who is submitting to us. We do not need your mailing address.  Please refrain from describing your stories. The work needs to speak for itself. Including each story’s title and word count is helpful for more efficient consideration of your work. Please include a brief third-person biography statement. If necessary, please include a content warning to help protect our readers.

Format: double-space your submission and use Times New Roman 12 pt font. Word docs work best!

Response Times: Please allow us up to three months to inform you if we have accepted your work for publication. You will usually hear from us much sooner. We cannot offer personalized feedback on each story. If we say, “Send more,” however, it does mean that we hope to see something else from you.

We consider submissions sent via Submittable. We are not open to email submissions and are not open to submissions sent via post.

Diversity Statement: We do not discriminate on the basis of age, ancestry, disability, family status, gender identity or expression, national origin, race, religion, sex or sexual orientation, or for any other reason. We reserve the right not to publish works that dwell unnecessarily in or that are unchallenging of the discrimination categories listed above. We reserve the right to send back work unread and unevaluated if we find the work violates our vision of inclusivity and non-discrimination. This may result in banning individual works or writers from our submission queue.

Rights: Uncharted Magazine holds the first serial publication rights for three months after publication. Authors agree not to publish, nor authorize or permit the publication of, any part of the material for three months following Uncharted Magazine’s first publication. For reprints, we ask for acknowledgment of its publication in Uncharted Magazine first.

Courtesy: Please refrain from withdrawing your submission to fix a typo or misspelling. These minor issues will not result in an automatic decline. We read submissions based on the value of the story, not the typing.