About | The Drift is a magazine of culture and politics

“The lit mag of the moment.”
The New York Times

“A new gold standard for the literary magazine.”
—Jorie Graham

The Drift incarnates a bracing new sensibility, as agile and mordant as it is intrepid.”
—Pankaj Mishra

“Gorgeous writing and maverick left political thinking—what more do you want from a magazine?”
—Wendy Brown

“A new generation’s memo—and a deservedly harsh one—to its elders.”
—Samuel Moyn

The Drift introduces itself with maybe the most brilliantly acute, utterly devastating criticism of the self absorption of elite, liberal media ever written.”
—Richard Yeselson

“I feel implicated by this but it’s terrific.”
—Michelle Goldberg

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.

Masthead | It’s our fault

Editors |

Kiara Barrow
Rebecca Panovka

Managing Editor |

Clare Sestanovich

Essays Editor |

Lyra Walsh Fuchs

Assistant Editor |

Jordan Cutler-Tietjen

Associate Editors |

Thayer Anderson
Erik Baker
Tarpley Hitt
Max Norman
Elena Saavedra Buckley
Krithika Varagur

Poetry Editor |

Zoë Hitzig

Print Designer |

Ivy Sanders Schneider

Art Director |

John Kazior

Fiction Assistants |

Kanyin Ajayi
Andres Vaamonde

Poetry Assistant |

Hua Xi

Researchers |

Claire Benoit
Alan Dean
Anabelle Doliner
Ella Fanger
Jael Goldfine
Sujay Kumar
Simone Liu
Olivia Oldham
Yosef Malka
Molly Montgomery
William Sydney

Submit | Don’t be shy

We want |

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.

We don't want |

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.

We're bored by |

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.

We pay |

$2,000 for essays
$500 - $1,000 for short stories
$150 for poems
$25 for Mentions

Pitch us at |


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.

Submit fiction to |


Attach your work (no word limit) as a Word doc or pdf titled “lastname_firstname.”

Send poetry to |


Attach up to six poems in a single Word doc or pdf titled “lastname_firstname.”

Propose Mentions at |


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.

Respond to a piece |

in our new, print-only Letters to the Editors section. Write to us at letters@thedriftmag.com.

Jobs | We’re hiring

Apply to be our business manager |

right here.

Find us | Say hi

Pick up a print issue |

at these stockists across the U.S., Canada, and Europe.

Advertise with us |

Anything else |