On Books and Authors

“Why’s this so Good?” No. 47: Calvin Trillin and Classic Edna Buchanan

A quintessential profile from the great profiler

Originally published June 19, 2012

Read the article at Nieman Storyboard


Fact-Checking “In Cold Blood”

I found the papers of the fact checker who worked on Capote’s nonfiction masterpiece.  What did he miss?

Originally published March 20, 2013

Read the article at Slate


Truthy Memoirs

A handy guide

Originally published July 11, 2011

Read the article at Nieman Storyboard


Trial and Eros

The 1960 case in England’s Old Bailey against “Lady Chatterley’s Lover.”

Originally published  October 01, 2010

Read the essay at The American Scholar


Believe It or Not

Memoir Fabulists Getting Caught Means the System Is Working

Originally published March 06, 2008

Read the article at Slate.com


Benevolent Dreamer

An appreciation of Sr. Clair McKelway

Originally published February 01, 2007

Read it at Columbia Journalism Review online


Michiko Kakutani

A critic with a fixation.

Originally published April 10, 2006

Read the article at Slate.com


My Life as a Hack

A freelancer’s lunch with Uma Thurman. Then everything went downhill.

Originally published August 26, 2005

Read the article on Slate.com


The 9/11 Commission Report

How a government committee made a piece of literature.

Originally published November 08, 2004

Read the article at Slate.com


Going Deep

How Gary Smith became America’s best sportswriter.

Originally published March 30, 2003

Read the article at Slate.com


I’m Upset. Quote Me.

The rising trend of state-of-mind writing.

Originally published January 14, 1995

Read the article at nytimes.com

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