But after a certain amount of time, as you progress, improve, and gain confidence, for some people, money should be a concern. After all, as you've worked to establish your name, you deserve compensation as well as recognition for your work.
I've reached this "place". I refuse to settle for outlets that pay in nothing more than contributor copies or exposure (unless there are special circumstances). If I want to eventually write fiction for a living, then I have to put my foot down somewhere. That's not to say that there aren't quality publications out there that do not pay monetarily, but just that you have to eventually recognize what your goals are.
And just because I expect to be paid for my work, it doesn't mean that you are doing anything wrong if you don't want to concentrate on paying markets. Giving your work away is certainly your choice and I don't mean to imply there's anything wrong with that.
But I do want to emphasize to the writers who feel like there's no other option that they do have a choice.
But isn't the joy of writing pay enough?
There was a time in my life when I operated on joy. But my goals consist of more than joy. I want this as a career. I want to be able to write for the rest of my life. I can't live on joy and I don't view this as a hobby. This is much more than that. It is an integral part of my life.
Wait, where ARE the paying markets?
As I flip through my Writer's Market (I prefer the print edition), I can safely say that roughly 80% or more of the markets (literary mags, online mags, consumer mags, etc.) are non-paying. Every time I research selling another story (I have several out there), it always hits me how few paying markets there are for short stories. But I keep on with it and at some point, I will reach my goals.
What are your goals?
BTW, here's one paying market: Ideomancer - a speculative market that I sent a short story to yesterday.