It’s been a hard year for older folks. No doubt, it’s been a hard year for most everyone. But it’s people over a certain age who’ve been most vulnerable during this age of pandemia. Many have been cooped up at home, kept apart from social activities and away from loved ones. Some haven’t hugged their children in over a year. Some have yet to meet new grandchildren.
Finally, the tide appears to be turning. And, we hope, the grandkids will their hugs and tickles soon enough.
Still, I thought it would be a good moment to give a little love to the oldsters in our literary community. Which lit mags actively cater to this older (ahem, wiser!) demographic? Which journals want submissions specifically exploring the senior experience? If there is a sensibility more common among older writers, which lit mags actively court that?
And sure, most lit mags are open to writers of all ages. No one of any age should hold themselves back from submitting to any magazine they like.
But sometimes, you need a place that’s just for you. A big welcoming room, all your own.
To that end, here is a list of lit mags specifically seeking submissions from writers over fifty. All information is taken from the magazines’ websites or editor interviews.
Ageless Authors is an effort to recognize your vitality, your strength and your craft. It is designed to highlight the work of writers and artists 65 years of age and older. Ageless Authors is the brainchild of two highly experienced writer/editors – Ginnie Bivona and Larry Upshaw — who launched a crusade on behalf of senior creativity in 2015.
Crone: Women Coming of Age explores the gifts and concerns of women who seek to fully embrace Earth’s cycles of life and death and transformation. We honor the wisdom of long experience and the compassion an open heart.
In 1990, in Baltimore, Passager was born. The idea was to bring attention to writers over 50 by giving them opportunities to publish with a nationally recognized press. At that time, it was unusual to find men and women writing in their 80s and 90s, but now we are happy to report that more and more authors join those ranks every day.
Persimmon Tree, an online magazine, is a showcase for the creativity and talent of women over sixty. Too often older women’s artistic work is ignored or disregarded, and only those few who are already established receive the attention they deserve. Yet many women are at the height of their creative abilities in their later decades and have a great deal to contribute. Persimmon Tree is committed to bringing this wealth of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and art to a broader audience, for the benefit of all.
Quartet Journal is a new online literary journal featuring poetry by women 50 years and older. Each quarterly issue also includes an author interview and book review or essay. Their first issue went live earlier this year and is available to read online so you can get a feel for the types of work they publish. They are currently open to poetry submissions for their next issue until May 8. Women age 50 and over are invited to submit up to three unpublished poems per submission period.
The Smoky Blue Literary and Arts Magazine, begun by members of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UNC Asheville (OLLI Asheville), has its roots in revitalization and the “reinvention of retirement” that can come in “life’s second half” (to quote OLLI Asheville)…In subject matter as well, Smoky Blue explores the wide spectrum of the senior citizen’s life, but we do not isolate that experience. We see it as inclusive of all aspects of living, and as a result welcome submissions on any topic and in any voice or style.
Know of other magazines for the fifty-plus set? Tell us about them!
Got some older writers you know and love in your life? Please: