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Contributor Archives: Paige Williams

Annotation Tuesday! Rebecca Skloot and the wild dogs of New York

Before Rebecca Skloot published the bestselling The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, she wrote magazines stories about science and about animals. You may remember her New York Times magazine piece “Fixing Nemo,” about goldfish surgery, and her O, the Oprah Magazine story on the neuroscience of why it’s so hard to change. In one of [...]

Launched: Storyline, the Washington Post’s new narrative project intersecting policy and storytelling

The Washington Post’s new narrative project, Storyline, launched today under the editorship of economics policy correspondent Jim Tankersley, with the tagline “People, policy, data.” As Tankersley explains in his introduction, Storyline is “dedicated to the power of stories to help us understand complicated, critical things. We’re focused on public policy, but not on Washington process. [...]

It’s Mayborn Week! Recommended reading …

The 2014 Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Conference opens Friday at the University of North Texas. The Saturday and Sunday workshops are full but you can still register for the keynote events. This year’s speakers are authors David Quammen, Lawrence Wright, and Sheri Fink, and other featured speakers include Amy Dockser Marcus, Mimi Swartz, Rose George, and Annie [...]

Upon Gary Smith’s retirement: The venerated Sports Illustrated writer on longform immersion and intimacy

It isn’t often that a narrative journalist’s retirement makes the news, but when Sports Illustrated announced this spring that longtime writer Gary Smith would be leaving the business, the public eulogies — and the “Best of Gary” lists — began immediately. Smith, who spent 32 years at SI, wrote celebrated stories “that weren’t so much about sports as [...]

Investigative + narrative: Storytelling this week at IRE

This year’s Investigative Reporters & Editors conference starts Wednesday in San Francisco, and there are no fewer than nine panels, workshops and master classes on storytelling. Registration is still open for IRE members ($100 for students; $260 for everyone else), but if you miss the conference you can find some materials — audio, video, tip sheets [...]

The Best of ‘Draft’ — control the narrative, keep it short & other advice on writing

Recommended reading from the New York Times’ Opinionator series “Draft,” on writing: “Keep It Short,” by columnist and author Danny Heitman: To shorten my articles, I often worked through several versions, and with a merciless finger on the delete button I could surgically reduce my first draft by half.

The exercise taught me that successful economy [...]

Notable narrative: “My Travels with the Curse of Maracaña”

If Amy O’Leary describes a piece as “crazy fantastic digital storytelling” — — you can bet it’s true. And so it is, with “My Travels with the Curse of Maracaña,” a 2014 “World Cup Special” for the New York Times magazine, by visual storyteller Cristoph Niemann and Times graphics/multimedia editor Jon Huang. It’s a fantastic blend of [...]

Nieman narrative news: Please welcome Steve Almond and Louise Kiernan

An exciting word from the mothership: CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Nieman Foundation for Journalism has hired Louise Kiernan to edit Nieman Storyboard, a website that showcases exceptional narrative journalism and explores the future of nonfiction storytelling, and Steve Almond to teach Nieman’s seminar in narrative writing, offered each year to Nieman Fellows. Kiernan, a 2005 Nieman Fellow, [...]