I know some people write entirely for their own pleasure. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that! For most though, the real satisfaction comes when it's selected for publication, chosen as a winning entry, read and enjoyed by others and/or when they get paid for it.
Here are some places you can send your short stories in the hope of achieving one of those outcomes –
Free entry writing competitions
Thanks to my writing buddy Sheila Crosby for passing on the details of this short story competition. Entrants must be resident in the UK or Ireland. Stories can be up to 4,000 words and the prize is £3,500. I'm definitely having a go!
And thanks (yet again!) to Alyson Hilbourne for telling me about a competition. Future Folklore is a 'speculative fiction contest that imagines a world where equitable climate change initiatives have been set in motion'. The prize is $400 for a story between 1,400 and 2,000 words.
A reminder that Secret Attic run regular competitions and challenges. There's a £20 for the best story in each of the monthly competitions. Other selected pieces are also published.
There's no payment for either of these, but money isn't everything.
Paragraph Planet are still accepting 75 word pieces to publish on the site. These can be complete mini stories, scenes or extracts from longer pieces. Published pieces are promoted on Twitter.
Cafelit want 'thought-provoking and entertaining stories, though ones which might be a tad different from what you normally read in a woman’s magazine'. These can be tiny, 3,000 words or anything in between. Successful pieces will be published on the site and may go into the 'Best of' anthology. You may submit a mini biography to be published alongside your work.
My submissions database is a guide to which magazines will consider unsolicited submissions, what they want and how to submit them.
Do you write for fun, in the hope of publication, prizes or payment, or for another reason?
For me there are lots of reasons, including it being something to keep me occupied on rainy days during our campervan trips.