We Have Answers.
Who runs The Sunday Long Read?
Don Van Natta Jr. and Jacob Feldman launched The SLR in 2014. You can read more about them, and their invaluable teammates, on our About page.
How do you choose your favorite stories?
After reading an article, if we immediately want to recommend it to a friend, you’ll find it featured in The Sunday Long Read. The stories features on our list are the ones that bring us pleasure, make us think or laugh and, most of all, tell us something I didn’t know. No “hot takes” here.
How do you come across so many different stories each week?
We are largely crowd-sourced, depending on dozens of weekly suggestions from our network of more than 100 contributing editors plus writers, editors and readers. We encourage our readers to email us links to their favorite stories or tweet out their favorite pieces using the #SundayLR hashtag. We also keep an eye on Twitter more broadly—or rather, struggle to take our eyes off it.
Why do you do this?
It is far too easy today to get sucked into the quick-hitting and controversial, at the expense of thoughtful, longform work. We believe the best journalism ought to be celebrated. Putting the newsletter together every week also forces us to sit down and catch up with all those stories we bookmarked and told ourselves we’d read.
How can I support the SLR?
The most important thing you can do is to join us every Sunday in reading, sharing, and celebrating our favorite writers. Beyond that, we’d love it if you:
A) Share the newsletter with your friends. We’ve grown to this point almost entirely by word of mouth.
B) Join us as a supporting member. Our awesome members help us keep the newsletter going, and make sure we can continue sending it for free.
Why do you have senior editors and guest editors?
Weekly curation of longform journalism is difficult and time-consuming—and we have very demanding day jobs. By necessity, we needed to find a way to occasionally take a week off and hand over the SLR’s controls to a guest editor, who brings a fresh eye and perspective to the role. And from the beginning, we hoped the newsletter would be crowd-sourced by journalists (and a few folks outside of journalism) who we admire and trust. We now have more than 100 contributing editors—the list will keep growing—who all will take at least one turn guest-editing the SLR and who make other meaningful contributions behind the scenes. The tradition of our guest editors writing opening essays happened almost by accident; it’s a tradition our readers have come to love.
And Jack Shafer, Politico’s veteran media critic who selects The Classic Read, has been with us from the very first SLR. Jack’s leap of faith and trust in us, when this newsletter was just an idea, is something I’ll always be grateful for. We’ve added outstanding senior editors who offer their weekly picks from the worlds of photography, podcasts, books, fiction, music, magazine covers, comic books, documentaries and more. We couldn’t do this without them. We are so grateful that they contribute every week and help make the SLR special.
Who are your subscribers?
We are fortunate to have attracted a very cool, eclectic audience of writers, editors, authors, TV and Hollywood people and devoted longform readers. They all value great storytelling delivered by a carefully curated newsletter that drops in their inboxes early every Sunday morning. One of the most gratifying things about this list is that many writers are proud when their work appears in The Sunday Long Read.
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Why didn’t I receive a newsletter this week?
There’s a chance we took the week off, but the more likely reason is that our newsletter ended up in your spam folder. Please check there, and add “editors@SundayLongRead.com” to your contacts list to prevent this from happening again.