Another Escape | The Journey So Far

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Another Escape is an independent media company championing outdoor lifestyle, environmental stewardship and regenerative living. We encourage people to connect with the natural world in meaningful ways so they may become active stewards of our planet.

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journal / Our Story

The Journey So Far

After eight years of publishing, we'd finally like to properly introduce ourselves. This is our story.

It has always made us chuckle how often people think we are some big operation with offices and staff. The truth is, for the most part, we are just a two-person team, working from home and virtually with a network of talented ad hoc freelancers.

For the longest time, we refrained from stepping out from behind the curtain of Another Escape. We figured, Another Escape was much more than us; it was everyone involved who helped create its voice, and it was everyone who read it and shared in its values. It was something to gather both people and ideas around. But now, after eight years, as we enter our next chapter, it feels the right time. So here we are. Hi. Nice to meet you. We’re Rachel and Jody.

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Meet Rachel

Hi, I’m Rachel Taylor, the editor of Another Escape. Despite being a city kid, I grew up climbing trees, picking blackberries and examining bugs in the garden. I’d say I’ve always been connected to nature. But oh my, the past decade has completely reframed how I see the natural world. Actually, not just how I see it, but also how I interact with it.

I love hiking, climbing, camping, trail running and (fair weather) wild swimming. I also love gardening and growing my own food. There’s a magic to working with nature in this way. Simply, I love being outdoors. I love the way it makes me feel. I’m not about big adventures, as such; I’m about relishing the small moments that remind us how mindblowingly awesome it is to be alive on this planet so full of life.

I believe that stories shape the way we see and move through the world. The narratives to which we tie ourselves influence our culture and our societies. Through blending my passion for storytelling with my love and advocacy of nature, outdoor lifestyle and environmentalism, I aim to create and build culture around nature connection, environmental stewardship and regenerative living. Because I know, having experienced it firsthand, when we foster a personal connection to the natural world not only do we strive to protect and preserve it but we can carve out a life more meaningful and enriched.

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Meet Jody

Hi, I’m Jody Daunton, the creative director of Another Escape. Yep, I’m a bloke, despite the name (which I really quite like). I grew up on the edge of the city, fields one way, suburbia the other. A scrappy boy from east Bristol, I knew very little about life beyond my home turf while growing up. If you’d have told me back then that today I’d be passionate about mycology, organic growing, food sovereignty and regenerative agriculture, I wouldn’t have believed you. In fact, I wouldn’t have known what on earth you were on about. Like many, I wasn’t exposed to such topics in my youth. Yet I’ve always been innately curious and pretty geeky, obsessively researching things that have piqued my interest. Those things nearly always revolve around the natural world. And although, I may not be on the frontlines of environmental activism or work in conservation or run a regenerative farm (yet), I can help mobilise positive change by supporting and championing people, projects and ideas through impactful storytelling.

Yep, we are a couple. Partners in business and life. And yep, at times this has proved tricky. But for the most part, it’s worked really well and been an incredible journey to go on together. The people we’ve met and the stories we’ve told have influenced the way we see the world, and it's been awesome to have shared that. Our skills complement one another’s, and as much as Rachel handles the words and Jody the images, as much as we each take the title of editor and creative director, really, our roles aren’t super defined and we work together to ensure the storytelling is spot on.

Our Story 

It was spring 2013. We stood gawping with knotted stomachs as the lorry was unloaded. A pallet of boxes stacked a metre tall and just as wide, each containing 20 copies of our very first edition, was plonked in the middle of our single-lane one-way street. We stirred from our daze panicked and began fighting through the cellophane wrap holding the pallet together and dashed to get the boxes indoors as the traffic built up.

The delivery lorry pulled off, and suddenly, it was just us and them.

We took a box cutter and readied ourselves for the moment of truth. It’s a funny thing seeing something that’s occupied months of your life in the digital space come to life in paper and ink. First came elation. Then a sense of achievement. Then disbelief that we’d done it. Then the realisation it was, well, real. And then came the smell, an intoxicating scent of inky goodness that flooded our small flat with the heady reminder that we now had to sell these publications. The issue was, we had no distribution, no customers and absolutely no clue what we were doing. But at this point, there was no turning back.

We packed up suitcases full of boxes, enlisted family members as foot soldiers and headed to London. Jumping on and off tubes, we hit up all the stores we believed may be interested in selling our publication. Crikey, it was a nerve-wracking experience, rock-paper-scissoring who had to go up to the counter and pitch this piece of ourselves. What if they said no? What then?

Remarkably though, they didn’t. They all said yes. And with empty suitcases, we headed home, ecstatic.

Also remarkable was that people were buying copies from our online shop. It was a basic little website that a friend hashed together for about £150, so God only knows what about it inspired people to part with their cash.

By the end of the month, we’d all but sold out of that pallet.

So we reprinted. And then those sold out too.

We couldn’t believe it.


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To lay some context, although we had creative backgrounds, we began Another Escape with no experience in publishing and just £3,000 startup cash. We hadn’t intended to start a company with that money; we’d worked hard to save it to travel the Balkans in the summer of 2012. But a couple of months before we were set to head off, Jody managed to turn his tibia and fibula into a splintered, shattered mush fooling around with a friend. After surgery to bolt his leg back together, there’d be no walking for six months let alone jumping on and off buses and trains. So that was that.

It was a recession. The job market was shot to shit. So why not start a business, we queried with naive optimism. And that’s just what we did while moonlighting to keep the wheels turning as we sussed things out.

Roll forward to when we’d sold out of our reprint of volume one, and we had a decision to make. Were we going to take this seriously and commit to the business? Or were we going to endeavour a different course? 

We went for it. We quit our jobs and worked our arses off to get the business off the ground. And oh boy, were we skint.


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Particularly in those early days, there was a lot of blagging it. And there was always this niggling fear that we were about to be found out and shamed as imposters. At meetings, we were never what people expected, twenty-something-year-olds a bit on the scruffy side. But screw it – did it really matter? The proof was in the pudding, right?

So we cracked on, learnt on the fly and tried to absorb as much knowledge as we could about this independent publishing game. Unbeknown to us, we released our first volume just as the appetite for independent publications was on the up. People were hungry for quality printed content with limited adverts that spoke of a lifestyle and set of values – that spoke to them as readers rather than on behalf of advertisers. Indie publications were doing just this. We were doing just this.


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Why not publish quarterly or monthly? The two of us could hardly keep up with putting out a biannual. We powered through the grind of our publishing schedule, and twice a year, we bid farewell to our friends for sometimes months at a go as we entered a deadline period.

Looking back, it seems like madness. The late nights, the weeks and weekends that blurred into one, the batch-cooked meals eaten for days simply to save time so we could get back to work. The greying hair, the greying skin and sunken eyes. But we believed in what we were doing – we believed in the value of the messages we were putting out into the world. We still do. And for better or worse, this was part of the sacrifice.

The years rolled on. In fact, they disappeared before us – completely evaporated. And yet we were still busting our hump on this project. It wasn’t just the content creation that took time; it was all the other things that kept the business afloat. Working at capacity and with limited bandwidth, we often chose to channel our energies not into making a more lucrative business but into continually making the product better, the storytelling better, the reader experience better. It made for lean times, but we were proud of what we were creating. And we’ve loved seeing our publication evolve over the years as we’ve upped our game, become more focussed in our mission and connected with more and more people.

We became better storytellers. Storytelling has always been at the heart of what we do – visuals and text coalescing on the printed page to convey narrative and meaning. And our editorial processes on the whole became more refined. We became more efficient and more skilled. Certainly, we were no longer imposters.


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We evolved as people, too. This was, of course, inevitable, but yet it wasn’t something we anticipated. We’d never given the eventuality much thought, to be honest – we just dove in and knuckled down. But incrementally, without realising it, our worldview began to shift.

Another Escape’s remit naturally led us to people who have fostered a deep connection with nature. They welcomed us into their lives, shared with us their knowledge and invited us to see the world through their lens. To them, we are forever thankful.

Each of them has a niche and in-depth knowledge and understanding on a topic, and as collectors of their stories, we began to gain a birds-eye view on how these topics interweave. Zoomed out, we could see that you can’t talk about, say, ecosystem health without talking about fungal health, without talking about microbial health, without talking about human health, without talking about food systems and resource extraction, without talking about large-scale ecological and climate disruption, without talking about our broken relationship with the natural world. It’s all one.

The question became, how do we fix this broken relationship? To us at least, the answer seemed to begin with a simple act: get outside. And when out there, open your eyes to how incredible nature is, appreciate it and watch it at work. Observe all the mechanisms that have evolved over aeons that keep life ticking over. Be curious and inquire. Gain knowledge and build understanding. Be a participant not just a spectator. Experience the awe and wonder. Feel a part of nature. Feel connected. Interconnected. Interdependent. Because, we figured, once we feel this, we’ll surely be driven to protect nature, to become active environmental stewards and to live more regeneratively.

The two of us examined this question in relation to our own lives. We’ve always considered ourselves environmentalists and outdoors lovers, yet despite this, we realised our relationships with nature needed work. We are, after all, a product of our culture – a culture that has an inherent and entrenched disconnect with nature.

Inspired by those we’d met and worked with, we slowed down to observe, to question, to learn and to participate. And when we did, we found that we got so much more out of our outdoor experiences. They became more rewarding and fulfilling. They became more enriching and nourishing.

A lot of the outdoors culture revolves around egos and metrics. For us, being outdoors isn’t about that. Outdoors activities are a means to access these places – an excuse to be out there, even. For us, being outdoors is about fostering a connection to nature. And what we found is that as our connection to nature deepens, it doesn’t just determine how we behave out there, it governs how we lead our lives entirely.

Wow. But once you know, you know. You can’t unlearn. So we better act, we thought. With that came the weight of the responsibility to retell our subject’s stories in a way that would land with impact and inspire people in the same way we’d been inspired.

We figured if we could successfully tell these stories and channel these messages in our content, not only could we motivate people to get outdoors more and become active environmental stewards, but we could nudge them in a direction that will, hopefully, change the way they see and experience the world. That’s pretty powerful shit. That’s when we’ll start to affect real change.

A big task, perhaps. But it’s worth a punt, right?

But it’s not like we’ve ever believed we can single-handedly save the world. Don’t worry, there’s no disillusion there. But we do believe that we can be a touchpoint for change on someone’s environmentalist journey and that it is often the arts and media that initiate the groundswell for cultural change – something we so desperately need now.


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Our evolution is reflected in the evolution of the content we’ve created. And it has dawned on us that as we’ve personally gone on this journey, we’ve taken our readers on it too. We’ve grown and evolved together. Which is insanely cool.

As we tell our story now and reflect on those early days – and that first pallet of publications, which seems so piddly compared to the numbers we’ve printed in recent years – we realise how far we’ve come but also how much more room for growth there is, both for us personally and Another Escape.

We’ll be forever grateful to all the people we’ve featured and worked with for shaping us as people. And we’ll be forever grateful to the community of readers and supporters who have egged us on, sent words of encouragement and told us how Another Escape has impacted their lives – this is what has always kept us moving forward. And of course, also to everyone who has lent us a helping hand along the way.

We reflect on the highs so far. And there have been some serious highs.

Landing our first stockist and the rush that came from someone believing in our product.

Working with Patagonia, a brand that we’ve held in such high regard since forever, for their ethics, their approach to business and their mission, and getting to tell the stories of their 1% For The Planet grantees, grassroots activists working on the frontlines.

Being published in Chinese and distributed throughout China – just wow.

And of course all the big and small moments in between.

With this, we look forward to the next chapter and working in new mediums to create and build culture around nature connection, environmental stewardship and regenerative living. To this new adventure.

Click here to read our announcement for changes in 2021. 

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