I just have to add my two cents (about five dollars with inflation) to Larry's very interesting blog with a short story of my own.
A lot of my small humor bits have gone into a free e-magazine called Cynic Magazine. I've never tried to get my short stuff published for money, but simply wanted an outlet for my overflowing sense of humor. Being a classy mag, Cynic has published everything I've given them, including articles in their "Best of 2005" and "Best of 2006" issues.
Like Larry, I always sort of wondered if something might come of the exposure, but otherwise, there's no downside, because other than publishing them, archiving them and reprinting for the "Best Of" issues, copyright reverts back to me.
But something did come of this, just recently in fact.
When my second book came out last month, I emailed the news to everyone in my address book. To my surprise, a few days later I received an email from Cynic saying that they would like to do something that they normally don't do. Since I've been such a faithful contributor, they were going to put an ad on their next issue for my new book... for free! And not only that, but in a future issue they would do a review, even further increasing the exposure.
So check it out at www.cynicmag.com
The Adventures of Guy ... written by a guy (probably)
The Next Adventures of Guy ... more wackiness