The Dial

a creative, collaborative community

“Could a circle be assembled in earnest, desirous to ask the questions—What were we born to do? and how shall we do it?”

— Margaret Fuller, 1839

The Dial is a creative, collaborative community born out of the coronavirus quarantine.

We think that most people have a compelling story to tell or something interesting they’re working on that is worth sharing. We believe more people should write and fewer people should have a newsletter. We desire to see more shared spaces for productive conversations. We lament that too many projects have too many qualifications for participation. When creatives collaborate—without friction and with freedom—outcomes of consequence emerge.

One of the byproducts of the The Dial community is Symposeum, a quarterly magazine by and for rational optimists. We also care about building relationships: between strangers turned friends, co-conspirators, and colleagues in the work of re-imagining the world as it ought to be.


What makes us different

is our orientation around an outlook, not an ideology or genre. We are all kinds of kinds, enriched by our variety and united by an optimistic disposition.

Our present circumstances


yield grounds for a pervasive brand of cynicism. But cynicism produces neither vision nor neighbors, and social ills fester where we are blind and atomized. Consult any historical catalog or spiritual canon to confirm that miracle follows intimacy—we see each other; we relate; we marvel, attune, collaborate.

Seeking an arena for generative conversations, we have identified a hunger unrelieved by current public discourse. We believe there is a growing appetite for something cheerful and rational—and where we cannot discover these, we are charged with creating. Conceived in the throes of 2020, our Dial is a voice of hope amidst the noise.


We thrive in community.

No destructive power can survive the incendiary friction of two tenacious minds. Two invite ten, and where there are ten, a hundred follow.

We’re glad you found us. We invite you to join us.