on Publishing … and Other Forms of Insanity:
Westerns were all the rage in the 1920s and 30s. Zane Grey and Louis L’Amour wrote dozens of books featuring rugged gun slinging cowboys. Movies and TV shows like Bonanza fed the public’s seemingly endless appetite for stories of the “wild west.” But starting in the late 1960s, the genre all but disappeared. Currently, Westerns have been reduced to a small corner of the “pulp fiction” genre.
While the market for historical fiction is more robust, in terms of short stories it also occupies a small niche market. For writers that is both good and bad. If you write short historical fiction, you don’t have a lot of competition, which makes getting published a little easier. But your readership won’t be as wide as more popular genres.
That being said, if you have written a shoot-em-out in the O.K. Coral or invented a new adventure for the Scarlet Pimpernel, here are your go-to paying markets for historical fiction and Westerns.