Belt Magazine publishes independent journalism about the Rust Belt. Online only, it launched in September 2013, and focuses on longform journalism, op-eds, and first person essays of interest to the region and beyond. Belt is committed to carefully edited, complex writing. We believe in quality over quantity, community over analytics, and the importance of the Rust Belt. We rely on individual members to sustain us. Find our editorial independence policy and our donor transparency policy here.
Praise for Belt Magazine
What Others Have Said About Belt Magazine and Belt Publishing:
“For an online publication, Belt is a rare breed. In contrast to the multitude of Buzzfeeds and Upworthys, Belt chooses to publish long, narrative articles” Next City
“We try to make every book as locally-produced as possible,” Trubek said. Not only do the editors of each anthology live in the subject city, but contributors also have strong ties to the place. Keeping things local is even kept in mind on the production side, as Belt works only with Midwestern printers. Publishers Weekly.
“With many news organizations struggling to differentiate themselves and stay alive, Belt Magazine is a refreshing example of a publication that’s managed to do both.” PRNewswire
“Marking its first year in publication, Belt Magazine, with its focus on the industrial Midwest, is the nation’s new literary darling.” American Prospect
Trend pieces and roundup pieces about revitalization or startups or cool hipster breweries are very popular to write,” said Anne Trubek, founder of the Cleveland-based Belt Magazine, which publishes level-headed longform on the Rust Belt. “And then there’s the ruins, though people are less interested in the ruins nowadays. Both these things are happening and both these things are true. But we try to integrate both into the same story as opposed to bouncing between poles. Columbia Journalism Review
Belt Magazine, a Cleveland-based, online publication focused on life in the Rust Belt, practices principles that ring almost quaint in the new media age. It assigns editors to work with writers on long stories with original reporting, writers who in turn get paid for their work. The result is a selection of stories and essays that often offer fresh insight into regional issues and challenges and that stoke smart conversation.” – Cleveland Plain Dealer
“Belt’s publishing business is profitable, bringing in most of the revenue that lets Belt run the magazine, which produces longform pieces and first-person narratives while covering a region often underserved by its daily publications.” Nieman Lab
“Creator Anne Trubek has taken the loose idea of writing about the Rust Belt and expanded the catch-all category with a host of brilliant writers on any and all topics that affect us, be it United pulling its hub from Hopkins and what role Burke Lakefront Airport plays in the region, to moving essays on what it’s like to grow up, live and work in Cleveland. It’s the sort of writing you won’t find anywhere else, both in scope and talent.” – Cleveland Scene
“The decaying cities of the post-industrial Midwest can sometimes seem like a museum of things America used to make: cars, refrigerators, steel, televisions. But if a start-up in Cleveland gets its way, the region may help rebuild the market for another endangered product — long-form magazine journalism.” – Jennifer Schuessler, New York Times