About

The Atavist Magazine publishes one incredible true story every month. We specialize in longform narratives, the kind you want to read to the very last word. Since the magazine’s founding in 2011, it has been recognized as a pioneer in digital storytelling. Our contributors have won numerous prizes, including a National Magazine Award and a Livingston Award, and have been nominated for many more. You can find a full list of accolades here. 

If you want to write for us, please check out our submissions page. If you want to support our work, consider becoming a subscriber. You can also follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook

We are proud to be part of Automattic, a company dedicated to democratizing publishing and commerce, and to making the web a better place. Automattic purchased both The Atavist Magazine and the Atavist publishing platform in 2018. The platform was retired three years later, and the magazine is now built on Newspack, an advanced open-source publishing and revenue-generating platform for news organizations, created by WordPress.com and the Google News Initiative.


Who We Are

SEYWARD DARBY
Editor in Chief

Seyward is former deputy editor of Foreign Policy and online editor of The New Republic. She is the author of Sisters in Hate: American Women on the Front Lines of White Nationalism, which was shortlisted for the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize. She has written for The New York Times, Harper’s, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, and other publications. Her peculiar name comes from this book. You can reach her at seyward@atavist.com.

JONAH OGLES
Articles Editor

Jonah previously worked at Outside, where he was articles editor, and Cincinnati Magazine. Stories he’s edited have been included in Best American anthologies, developed into books, and nominated for multiple awards. His writing has appeared in Canoe & Kayak, The Fly Fish Journal, and other publications devoted to water sports, even though he now lives in the high desert of New Mexico. You can reach him at jonah@atavist.com.

ED JOHNSON
Art Director

Ed is a designer and journalist whose work has appeared in Foreign Policy, The New York Observer, Politico Magazine, Capital NY, and other publications. He is currently the creative director at Institutional Investor. His work has been recognized by the Society of Publication Designers, the Society of Illustrators, and Best American Infographics. You can reach him at ed@atavist.com.

SEAN COOPER
Copy Editor

Sean is trying to just mostly read these days, but he also edits copy for Harper’s, Outside, and California Freemason Magazine, among others. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, which is somewhat improving.

JEFFERSON RABB
Cofounder

Jefferson is currently the VP of engineering at The Atlantic. Previously, he led the team that built and launched Newspack. He created the original Atavist publishing platform and led the company as CTO, head of product, and then CEO as it grew to include thousands of customers. Simultaneously, he served as creative director of The Atavist Magazine. Prior to that, he spent a decade building apps, games, and digital experiences for book publishers and bestselling authors, and was on staff at MTV.com, Sephora.com, the Shooting Gallery, and Mutation Labs. He lives in New York with his wife and their beagle mix, Ellie Mae. He is a musician and composer, and occasionally tours with the band Morricone Youth.

EVAN RATLIFF
Cofounder

Evan is an award-winning journalist who has written for The New Yorker, National Geographic, and Wired, where he has contributed for more than two decades. He is the author of the book The Mastermind, based on his Atavist series of the same name. His writing has appeared in numerous Best American anthologies, and he is a two-time finalist for both the National Magazine Awards and the Livingston Awards. Evan was the founding story editor of Pop-Up Magazine, and he cohosts the Longform podcast.

NICHOLAS THOMPSON
Cofounder

Nicholas is the CEO of The Atlantic, former editor in chief of Wired, former editor of NewYorker.com, and the author of The Hawk and the Dove: Paul Nitze, George Kennan, and the History of the Cold War. He cofounded The Atavist Magazine and the Atavist publishing platform in 2009, while his first son was learning to walk, and helped sell it in 2018, when his third son was finishing pre-K four. His personal website is at nickthompson.com.


How to Reach Us

Readers: Support great storytelling by becoming a magazine subscriber. Your dollars go directly toward the work our contributors do, and they’re matched two-to-one by our parent company, Automattic. If you have questions about an existing subscription, please contact our support team at subscriptions@atavist.com.

Writers: We encourage you to read our guidelines and tips for submissions before sending pitches.

Artists: We welcome your submissions and inquiries about commissions for illustration, photography, and other creative work. Please send them to our art director

Potential Partners: We love collaborating on projects. The Creative Nonfiction podcast hosts the writer of each new story we publish. Here’s a feature we produced in partnership with The Lens in New Orleans, with support from the Fund for Investigative Journalism. Stay tuned in Summer 2021 for a true-crime podcast we’re working on with Cadence 13. Contact the editor in chief if you have ideas for new partnerships.

Fact Checkers: Our researchers work on a per-project basis and are paid a competitive hourly rate. If you’d like to be considered for our roster, please contact the editor in chief.

Film and TV Interest: Many of our stories have been optioned for film and television projects. The magazine is represented by Michelle Kroes at Creative Artists Agency. Please contact the editor in chief or CAA directly with inquiries about story rights.


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