True Story

True Story is a new home for longform nonfiction narratives.

Published monthly by the editors of Creative Nonfiction magazine, each pocket-size issue of True Story showcases one exceptional essay by one exceptional writer. From issue to issue, this new mini-magazine features the widest possible variety of voices and styles and subjects.

Offering a vivid report from real life, each issue of True Story is a small immersion in a larger-than-life story or experience that makes us think differently about what it means to be human. 

Big stories. Small size. Delivered monthly.
Subscribe here >>


True Story, Issue #3
"Muzzled" by Gabriela Denise Frank 

On her eighteenth birthday, Gabriela Denise Frank asks her father to take her shooting in the desert—a father-daughter bonding day. But are there other motives behind her request? This far-ranging discussion of guns, ballistics, mass shootings, and the psychology of abuse ends in a simple question: Will she, or won’t she?

Gabriela Denise Frank is the author of CivitaVeritas: An Italian Fellowship Journey. Her writing has appeared in Stoneboat, the Rumpus, Word Riot, Bird’s Thumb, and the anthology Behind the Yellow Wallpaper: New Tales of Madness, published by New Lit Salon Press. This essay was written during a summer residency at Mineral School, an arts center located in a former elementary school in Mineral, Washington. 

Read an excerpt / buy the issue >>

True Story, Issue #2
"Trip to the Zoo" by Steven Church 

In September 2012, twenty-five-year-old David Villalobos abruptly dived from a monorail ride into the Siberian tiger pit at the Bronx Zoo. In True Story #2, Steven Church retraces (some of) Villalobos’s steps in an attempt to understand the impulse that drives him—and others like him—to get close to a predator.

Steven Church is the author of The Guinness Book of Me: A Memoir of Record, Theoretical Killings: Essays and Accidents, The Day After The Day After: My Atomic Angst, Ultrasonic: Essays, and the newly released One with the Tiger: Sublime and Violent Encounters between Humans and Animals, from which this essay is excerpted. He’s a founding editor and nonfiction editor for The Normal School and teaches in the MFA Program at Fresno State, where he is the Hallowell Professor of Creative Writing. 

Read an excerpt / buy the issue >>

True Story, Issue #1
"Fruitland" by Steven Kurutz 

The premiere issue of True Story tells the story of Donnie and Joe Emerson, two brothers from Fruitland, WA, an isolated community outside of Spokane, who as teenagers in the late 1970s self-recorded an album in a log-cabin studio their father built for them on the family farm. The album, Dreamin' Wild, flopped upon its release but was rediscovered in a junk shop in 2008 and reissued by Light in the Attic records to critical and cult acclaim--but not without bringing out ghosts from the past and taking an emotional toll and the brothers and their family.

Steven Kurutz is a features reporter for the New York Times, where he writes about style, culture, and design. Before joining the Times in 2011, he held staff writer positions at the Wall Street Journal and Details. He is the author of Like a Rolling Stone: The Strange Life of a Tribute Band (Random House), which the New York Times Book Review called “heartfelt and often hilarious.” He lives with his wife in Brooklyn.

Read an excerpt / buy the issue >>