We publish personal essays, short stories, poems, and black-and-white photography in print and online in our monthly magazine.

We’re looking for narrative writing and evocative photography from all over the world. Send us work that maps the human landscape, where the light catches on the faintest joy, where darkness sometimes threatens to overwhelm, and where never marks the spot because the truth is never so simple.

First-time authors and award-winners alike find their place in The Sun. We are particularly interested in submissions from marginalized voices.

Our uncommonly supportive community of readers includes 60,000 print subscribers and thousands more website visitors. And The Sun is ad-free, so when we share your work, we don’t crowd it with distracting sales pitches.

Detailed submission guidelines, including our compensation rates, are available on our website.


Essays, Fiction, & Poetry

Writing that can turn heads, open hearts, and change minds.

We publish personal essays, short stories, and poems by established and emerging writers from all over the world. Click here for submission guidelines and payment rates.

Readers Write is a feature in The Sun where readers share their personal writing on a given topic — a unique fixture of the  magazine since the section’s inception in 1978. Send us your true story  on an upcoming topic, and if we publish it you’ll receive a  complimentary one-year subscription.

Not sure what to write? See below for some prompts to spark an idea. Writing style isn’t as important as thoughtfulness and sincerity, and topics are intentionally  broad to give room for expression and interpretation.

You can read a sample Readers Write section here.

Upcoming Topics



Due March 1

Have you ever realized that something you believed for years—about a friend, about your family, about how to jump-start a car—isn’t right at all? Have you been misjudged because of assumptions others made about you, or have you done the same to someone else? Tell us about the time you had a fight with your spouse because you misheard what they said or you got your boss’s instructions all wrong. Just remember, we publish only true stories in Readers Write. Got it?


The Basement

Due April 1

Concrete floors. Stone walls. The vaguely menacing furnace. Bare incandescent bulbs that turn on with the pull of a chain. Were you scared of it when you were young? Did you huddle there when the news issued a tornado warning? Or is it the place you retreat from your family nowadays? Get to the bottom of it and send us your true story about "The Basement."


Due May 1

They say timing is everything, and we want your true stories that prove it. Did you meet a special someone at just the right (or wrong) moment? Ever make or miss a travel connection that had unexpected consequences? Would you have avoided a fight or lost out on an opportunity if you’d shown up a minute later? Don’t miss the deadline: send us your submissions about serendipitous or unlucky timing by May 1.

We’re interested in black-and-white photographs. We’re not looking for photojournalism, just unique perspectives on the world around us — especially human interactions.

Please review our full submission guidelines and sample photographs before sending us your work.

The Sun Magazine