“The lit mag of the moment.”
—The New York Times
“A new gold standard for the literary magazine.”
“The Drift incarnates a bracing new sensibility, as agile and mordant as it is intrepid.”
“Gorgeous writing and maverick left political thinking—what more do you want from a magazine?”
“A new generation’s memo—and a deservedly harsh one—to its elders.”
“The Drift introduces itself with maybe the most brilliantly acute, utterly devastating criticism of the self absorption of elite, liberal media ever written.”
“I feel implicated by this but it’s terrific.”
Founded in June 2020, The Drift aims to introduce new work and new ideas by young writers who haven’t yet been absorbed into the media hivemind and don’t feel hemmed in by the boundaries of the existing discourse. Our issues, published three times a year, feature longform essays and cultural criticism, short fiction, poetry, interviews, dispatches, and extremely abbreviated reviews.
Elena Saavedra Buckley
Lyra Walsh Fuchs
Ivy Sanders Schneider
sharp, surprising interventions; socially engaged cultural criticism; class-sensitive analysis; pieces that point out what’s being avoided or talked around in politics, media, arts, or even academia; upbeat cynicism; un-self-serious screeds; generous takedowns; entries from the margins; fiction; poetry; 150-word reviews of books/ films/ TV shows/ art/ ephemera.
anything that toes a party line (any party, any line); highbrow name-dropping; attacks on easy targets; straightforward longform reviews narrowly focused on a single book or movie; dispatches from The Right Side of History; finger wagging; false binaries; anachronistic historical critiques; thoughts on Heidegger, Nietzsche, Foucault, [insert theory-bro icon here]; hot takes on the latest 24-hour Twitter scandal; term papers (or anything that could conceivably be turned in as a term paper); Marxist critiques culminating in statements about the base and superstructure; personal essays.
your love life; Twitter; therapy; cancel culture; chalking it up to neoliberalism; chalking it up to late-stage capitalism; AI panic; ChatGPT; trad Caths; Dimes Square; whatever’s on Netflix; greenwashing; performative pessimism; girlbosses, and misogynistic critiques of girlbosses; memes; Sally Rooney, Ottessa Moshfegh, and their imitators; New York; wokeness; anti-wokeness; trauma; gender essentialism; the political and psychological effects of social media; zoomers and sex; cable news; Elon Musk; hot girls; lifestyle choices; contemporary fiction.
$2,000 for essays
$500 - $1,000 for short stories
$150 for poems
$25 for Mentions
Unfortunately, we’re not able to read draft nonfiction submissions. We work on essays often over the course of many months and several drafts, and we like to begin with a two- to four-paragraph pitch. For advice, read our guide on writing an effective pitch. We read and respond to every pitch we receive, so bear with us—it may take us a bit of time to get back to you, but we will.
Attach your work (no word limit) as a Word doc or pdf titled “lastname_firstname.”
Attach up to six poems in a single Word doc or pdf titled “lastname_firstname.”
State the topic in the subject line. In the email body, include your name, relevant clips, and a draft of the review, which should be 1-4 sentences. The best Mentions have a clear, narrow angle, make a few jokes, and land on a punchy kicker.
in our new, print-only Letters to the Editors section. Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.