Narratively

Lifting the veil on surprising and secretive jobs, pursuits and lives.
                   

Secret Life of a Broke Personal Finance Guru

Our family was featured in a national newspaper as the picture of fiscal responsibility. A few months later we were drowning in debt, and I realized we were looking at everything...

My Long, Strange Journey Writing About the Minecraft Universe

I was raising two young kids after my husband died, taking any writing gig I could. My 40 novels about dragons and exploding creepers helped connect us more than I ever imagined.

My Secret Life as a Reporter for “Doll Reader” Magazine

As a women’s studies major and Very Serious Journalist, I thought I had nothing to learn from people who obsessed over expensive children’s toys. I couldn’t have been more...

The Secret Life of a Professional Statue

How staying perfectly still for tips — despite tourists’ bewildering lack of boundaries — taught me to stand my ground in life.

Diary of an Awkward Teenage Balloon Artist

Entertaining kids with inflated animals is tough—and when you’re a math-team nerd competing for gigs against your charismatic crush, it can blow up your entire life.

My Secret Life as an Underage Massage Therapist

As my hands addressed their aches and pains, my clients shared their fantasies and fears with 15-year-old-me. Little did they know, I was dealing with family drama of my own.

The Diver Who Brings Up the Bodies

So many Indian farmers are killing themselves that bodies pile up at the end of one long canal. Gurbaksh Singh helps their families find closure.

My Secret Life as a Mysterious Multimillionaire’s Personal Assistant

It started with a simple Craigslist ad. Before long I was being sent on sketchy tasks, pocketing wads of cash, and trying not to think about where his money came from.

Confessions of a Professional White Asshole

How I built a lucrative career (and gradually sold my soul) playing caricatures of awful white dudes on black TV shows.