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Top 50 Literary Magazines and Metazines
Criteria: Non-Corporate, Brilliant + Dynamic Content, Long-Lasting, Cosmetically Efficient
Producer: WDS

2River   ://  View
An electronic journal of poetry and poetics. Since 1996, 2River has been a site of poetry, art, and theory, quarterly publishing The 2River View and occasionally publishing individual authors in the 2River Chapbook Series.

3 AM Magazine   ://  View
Literary oriented articles, stories, essays, and documentaries. 3 AM Magazine is one of the boldest and most unique literary metazines out there, and truly an inspiration to a new generation of e-ziners. All hail to their staff and editors. A must see. We love it.

5 Trope   ://  View
An electronic journal of alternative work founded and published by Web del Sol in a day when not much of the sort existed. The design is still dark and strange, and the work not always liked by everyone, but that was never the point. Large archives and lots of contributors make this a must see if you are interested in experimental forms.

Agni   ://  View
Literature for literature’s sake is not what AGNI is about. Rather, we see literature and the arts as part of a broad, ongoing cultural conversation that every society needs to remain vibrant and alive.

Barcelona Review   ://  View
BR is the Web's first electronic review of international, contemporary cutting-edge fiction in English/Spanish/Catalan multilingual format. They now also have our fourth French translation from the English and plan to have more in the future. They're a small but ever-growing circle of mixed nationalities (Catalan, Spanish, French, American, English, and Scottish) who have come together over love of Barcelona and literature. No literary journal can top BR, seriously.

Big Bridge   ://  View
From humble beginnings, this site has evolved to become a force of web nature. Now a quarterly review featuring illustrated chapbooks, poetry, fiction, non-fiction, all kinds of art, a "Little Mags" section, recorded readings, as well as links to interesting art and literary resources.

Blackbird   ://  View
Blackbird literary magazine publishes a diverse and accomplished collection of writers, including several Pulitzer-Prize-winners as well as other writers of widely recognized literary reputation, in addition to writers whose careers are just beginning. They publish fiction, poetry, nonfiction and their first issue features a streaming audio version of an "earplay" by well-known playwright Romulus Linney, as performed by professional actors. They also cover the world of visual arts. Truly a class act you shouldn't miss.

Brevity   ://  View
Brevity has published well-known and emerging writers working in the extremely brief (750 words or less) essay form. Though still committed to the mission of publishing new writers, Brevity has enjoyed an embarrassment of recent riches, including the work of two Pulitzer prize finalists, numerous NEA fellows, Pushcart winners, Best American authors, and writers from India, Spain, and Japan.

Carve Magazine   ://  View
Carve features a new site layout and new short stories quarterly. They "publish the kind of stories that linger long after they are read—stories that are honest, that are willing to reveal the flaws and the beauty hidden in each of us."

Chattahoochee Review   ://  View
Also a cultural organization whose purpose is to build and maintain a literary community in Georgia and the Southeast, the Chattahoochee Review is a nationally recognized literary magazine sponsored by Georgia Perimeter College. Their purpose, a tradition begun twenty-seven years ago, is to publish original writing of literary merit. Each quarter, they publish the best in creative writing, essays, fiction, and literary criticism. We do attest as to their sense of honor and duty.

Conjunctions   ://  View
How much can you praise a literary magazine that has been on the bleeding edge of experimental lit for so long. Web Conjunctions is often overlooked as a player in the web lit scene, but that is a huge mistake. No one publishes better lit than Web C, no one--thanks to Brian Evenson and Brad Morrow. You must peruse this collection!

Contemporary Poetry Review   ://  View
Founded in 1998, the Contemporary Poetry Review is an online journal devoted exclusively to the criticism of poetry. From its inception, its mandate has been to provide the general reader with a guide to contemporary poetry, and to serve as an organ of intelligent criticism. To do so, the Contemporary Poetry Review has attempted to encourage criticism that is clear, spacious, and free of academic jargon and politics.

Del Sol Review   ://  View
This literary magazine or e-journal, edited by Michael Neff, the founder of Web del Sol, seeks to publish unsolicited work in the categories of poetry, prose poetry, creative non-fiction, short stories, and flash fiction. All forms and styles are considered. DSR has a distinguished career of not chasing "names" and seeking rather to publish the best work available. See for yourself.

Crazyhorse   ://  View
Always interesting, always surprising, Crazyhorse was founded in 1960 and publishes essays, fiction, and poetry “from the mainstream to the avant-garde, from the established to the undiscovered writer.” Editors Carol Ann Davis, Bret Lott, Emily Rosko, and Anthony Varallo demonstrate their tastes for intelligence, edginess, and excellence in issue after issue.

Diagram   ://  View
An electronic journal of text and art, yet also very unique. As the name indicates, they are interested in representations. In naming. In indicating. The value the insides of things, vivisection, urgency, risk, elegance, flamboyance, and language that does something new, or does something old--well. They love mechanical, moving parts, balloons, and frenzy. Diagram is a must see.

Double Room   ://  View
A biannual literary publication founded in 2002 by Peter Connors and Michael Neff designed to explore the intersection of prose poetry and flash fiction. Double Room is unquestionable one of the top three literary journals exploring and publishing the short form.

Drunken Boat   ://  View
These gals and guys are struggling against the odds to put together a stunning and remarkably diverse e-journal that takes second place to no one. As chief editor Ravi notes, "From design to editing, our glories are on screen, not in hand." And he asks, "Has the profusion of new online magazines begun to saturate a fragmented collective attention span or is that explosion of media exactly what is needed to combat the closed circuit and too-often myopic world of print?" Whatever. Go read it.

Ducts Journal   ://  View
What can't you say about Ducts? Essays, memoirs, fiction, art, poetry, profiles, columns, Greenpoint Press, and it doesn't end there. This website is amazing, beautiful, and damn serious. Tip the lit hat and throw salt, Ducts is here to stay.

Ecotone   ://  View
Ecotone, founded in 2005 and published at UNC Wilmington, is a semiannual journal that seeks to reimagine place. Each issue brings together the literary and the scientific, the personal and the biological, the urban and the rural. An ecotone is a transition zone between two adjacent ecological communities, containing the characteristic species of each. It is therefore a place of danger or opportunity, a testing ground. We embrace and celebrate these ecotones by breaking out of the pen of the purely literary and wandering freely among the disciplines.

Exquisite Corpse   ://  View
Exquisite Corpse is an avant-garde online zine edited by Andrei Codrescu. It changes from year to year, but always in-your-face, bold, beautiful, and full of humor. Don't ever expect less.

Failbetter   ://  View
Not just another web zine, Failbetter is an original, new culture journal publishing original works of fiction, poetry, and art, thanks to Thom Didato and crew. This mag is 21st century in-your-face.

Five Points   ://  View
Named after a place in Atlanta where cattle paths once converged, Five Points has become one of this country's best literary magazines. Published three times a year by Georgia State University's Department of English and Creative Writing Program, each issue features poetry, fiction, essays, and interviews with the most compelling writers working today. Philip Levine calls Five Points "A refreshing combination of the old and the new. The best literary magazine I've read in ages!"

Identity Theory   ://  View
Talk about pushing the web envelope. ID is a regularly updated, socially conscious web magazine that covers literature, music, film, and art. Includes over 200 author interviews featuring notable personalities like Howard Zinn, Jonathan Safran Foer, Chip Kidd, Azar Nafisi, Ethan Hawke, and Sarah Vowell. Music interviews with envelope-pushing bands such as Animal Collective and Sleater-Kinney--as well as album reviews and music articles. And on and on and on.

In Posse Review   ://  View
Writers are encouraged to submit classic short fiction as well as short-shorts, prose poetry, poetry,  micro-shorts, flash fictions, and other hybrid fiction forms. We are also interested in creative nonfiction, including literary memoir. Innovation is encouraged."

Jacket Magazine   ://  View
Published three or four times a year on the Internet only, founded by John Tranter in a rash moment in 1997, to showcase lively contemporary poetry and prose. It is one of the granddaddys of superb lit and sass on the Internet, and an inspiration for the generation to follow. Jacket Magazine is glorious.

Kenyon Review   ://  View
Kenyon Review, one of America's oldest (since 1939) and best-regarded print literary magazines, is new to a full-scale web presence. But the online version offers that same quality writing as the print version has for many decades.

Locus Novus   ://  View
Way different. "An environment to exhibit the projection of ideas which have been affected by today's dynamism." What does that mean? We don't know, but Locus Novus is a "room in flux" full of interesting titles like "The Secret Historian of Red Herrings" and "A Revelatory Dream of Restoration."

Mad Hatters Review   ://  View
"Edgy, Enlightened Literature, Art and Music in the Age of Dementia" welcomes writings that address psychosocial issues, the pollution of minds, hearts, bodies and nature. At times, bizarrely purple, they also welcome purely aesthetic pieces, packed with surprising images and whimsical wordplays, and they love uncategorizable experimental pieces. No kidding.

MiPOesias Magazine   ://  View
Publishes contemporary poetry featuring established writers and new voices. They also feature interviews and reviews. Acutally, MiPOesias is a typographical error. On November 8, 2000, the domain name was mistyped during purchase. A year later, John Tate III, a writer from the poetry community, began calling the magazine "MiPO". This abbreviation was easier to pronounce and has stuck with them ever since.

Missouri Review   ://  View
The Missouri Review, founded in 1978, is one of the most highly-regarded literary magazines in the United States and for the past twenty-five years they have upheld a reputation for finding and publishing the very best writers first. Besides new fiction, poetry and essays, they also run interviews with famous authors and found-text features where they print never before published works such as a short story by William Faulkner or one of Tennessee Williams' plays. Yes, it's true.

Mudlark   ://  View
A journal of poetry and poetics. "Never in and never out of print..." as they say. Mudlark has been building a great archive of work since the old days of the web. William Slaughter is one of the most quiet yet most important contributors to the poetry scene online. You can spend months on this website. Do it.

New American Writing   ://  View
Founded in 1986, NAW is edited by poets Paul Hoover and Maxine Chernoff, and appears once a year in early June. The magazine has a long, distinctive history of publishing a range of contemporary innovative poetry, with occasional themed or geographically concentrated issues. The editors actively seek poems in translation. Proven by its longevity and continued excellence.

Paris Review   ://  View
Decade after decade, this journal has introduced the important writers of the day. Adrienne Rich was first published in its pages, as were Philip Roth, V. S. Naipaul, T. Coraghessan Boyle, Mona Simpson, Edward P. Jones, and Rick Moody. The website is really flashy now and looking a bit Hollywood, but the energy and tradition can't be overlooked. A must see.

Perihelion   ://  View
Begun at Web del Sol back in 1995 (because we felt the world needed a quality poetry journal) Perihelion has been ably run by great editors (including the current editor, Joan Houlihan) all determined to push the envelope and provide the reader with an eclectic and unsurpassed archive of great poetry. Perihelion was so popular in the late nineties that one editor even tried to "web-jack" the entire magazine onto another server, but ethics and the law were on our side. That was a close one!

Pif Magazine   ://  View
Launched in 1995, Pif was tainted at first by fiction editors who were less than stellar and even somewhat dysfunctional, but now all that has changed. Pif Magazine publishes a poetry section, a short story section ("Macro Fiction"), a short-short section ("Micro Fiction"), a memoir section, an interview section, a songwriting section, a screenwriting section, craft articles, a zine reviews section, animated cover art, an onsite bookstore, theme-oriented commentary, searchable archives, and Writers Only classifieds. Pif is also home to Pilot-Search, the Internet's largest literary search engine. Thank you, Derek Alger.

Ploughshares   ://  View
The principal mandates—to offer different opinions on what is valid and important in contemporary literature, and to discover and advance significant literary talent. Ploughshares has been one of the leading lights of literature and continues to fulfill this role. The website is a razor and a balm--what a literary journal website should be. Love it.

Poetry Magazine   ://  View
Founded in Chicago by Harriet Monroe in 1912, Poetry magazine has since published a new issue every month for one hundred years. Its primary commitment is still to discover new voices. In recent years, over a third of the poets published have been new to the magazine. All back issues are available online.

Poetry International Web   ://  View
A new, worldwide forum for poetry on the internet! PIW will bring you news, reviews, essays, interviews and discussion, but, first and foremost, hundreds of poems by acclaimed modern poets from all around the world, both in the original language and in English translation.

Serving House: A Journal of Literary Arts   ://  View
Under the editorship of Duff Brenna, Steve Kowit, and R.A. Rycraft, Serving House offers a rich assortment of poetry, essay, short stories, flash fiction, reviews, interviews. translations, discussions, and featured writers.

Shenandoah   ://  View
After nearly six decades as one of the most respected American literary magazines, Shenandoah is now all online, with the same high standards and world-class writers, with bonus features made possible by the flexibility of digital publication.

Slope Magazine Review   ://  View
No longer a newcomer on the web-lit scene, Slope has evolved into a diverse poetry journal that will surprise you with its range and depth. You might even hear interesting music in the background. Who knows? Contributors hail from countries including Australia, England, South Africa, Nigeria, France, Tunisia, Wales, Slovenia, Canada and the United States.

Terrain - A Journal of Environments   ://  View
A journal "searching for that interface—the integration— among the built and natural environments, that might be called the soul of place." Who can aspire to higher goals? And further, "... a celebration of the symbiosis between the built and natural environments where it exists, and an examination and discourse where it does not ... the works may be idealistic, technical, historical, philosophical, and more." This place is truly amazing. Thank the gods for Internet.

Tin House   ://  View
The first issue of Tin House magazine arrived in the spring of 1999, the singular lovechild of an eclectic literary journal and a beautiful glossy magazine. Publisher Win McCormack said of the effort, “I wanted to create a literary magazine for the many passionate readers who are not necessarily literary academics or publishing professionals.”

The Iowa Review   ://  View
Edited by faculty, students, and staff from the renowned writing and literature programs at the University of Iowa, The Iowa Review takes advantage of this rich environment for literary collaboration to create a worldwide conversation among those who read and write contemporary literature.

The Literary Review   ://  View
Out of FDU, this high quality journal, under the leadership of Minna Proctor, has been publishing superb literature from all over the world, and for many years. Recently, each issue has been organized about a provocative theme, such as "The Lives of the Saints," "Loss Control," and "Invisible Cities and Scenester." Take a week and linger in their archives, absorbing work from so many inventive writers and so much of the world.

The Potomac Metazine   ://  View
What other publication focuses on poetry and politics? No other. "From its very conception, The Potomac was determined to become a nonesuch literary review." This amazing "metazine" publishes an eclectic mix of poetry, along with prose poems and quictions (quick + fictions), political articles, provocative blog feeds, film reviews, you name it. Their motto: WE CAN DO IT! Just ask Rosie the Riveter.

TriQuarterly Online   ://  View
Triquarterly is another example of a important print magazine that has shifted to an all-online presence. Long known as an outlet for innovative writing, this new incarnation takes advantage of the digital possibilities by featuring video essays and blogs as well as fiction, poetry, prose essays, reviews, and interviews.

Virginia Quarterly Review   ://  View
We'll let them tell it in their own words: "VQR has thus made good its purpose of becoming a national publication of popularity and prestige, of independence and integrity. Readable and responsible, it is also entertaining. Though fresh as tomorrow's newspaper, each issue—read cover to cover upon publication—will still have value a decade later. Small wonder, then, that VQR has been called "the journal for all seasons & all reasons." Amen to that!

UBU WEB   ://  View
UbuWeb is a completely independent resource dedicated to all strains of the avant-garde, ethnopoetics, and outsider arts. UbuWeb's work never goes "out of print." UbuWeb is a never-ending work in progress: many hands are continually building it on many platforms.

Word Riot   ://  View
You name it, they've got it: poetry, flash fiction, cnf, "stretching forms," interviews, reviews, stories, and even their own press. All sharp and LA hip-like. Cool.


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