Every Literary Reportage student is paired with a professional writer for one semester of mentorship. It is a wonderful opportunity for an up-and-coming journalist to work with a professional, helping him on every facet of a project. Every week, in exchange for five hours of research and reporting assistance, the writer will critique the student’s work. The mentorship program is one of many ways that the Literary Reportage concentration makes the most of our position in one of the most writer-dense cities in the world. Here are some of the professional journalists who have taken part in the program so far.
Peter J. Boyer joined The New Yorker as a staff writer in 1992. He has written on a wide range of subjects, including politics, the military, religion, and sports. Before joining The New Yorker, Boyer was a reporter for the Los Angeles Times and The New York Times, a contributing editor at Vanity Fair, and a television critic for National Public Radio’s “Morning Edition.” He won a George Foster Peabody Award, an Emmy, and consecutive Writers Guild Awards for his reporting for the documentary series “Frontline.” He is the author of the book Who Killed CBS?: The Undoing of America’s Number One News Network (Random House, 1988) and is at work on a book about American evangelism.
Alan Burdick is a senior editor at The New Yorker and a contributing editor for OnEarth, where he writes the “Synthesist” column about technology and nature. His writing has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Harper’s, GQ, Discover, OnEarth, Best American Science and Nature Writing, and elsewhere. He also has served widely as an editor, including at The New York Times Magazine, Discover, and The Sciences. A former Guggenheim fellow, Burdick has received the AAAS Westinghouse prize for magazine feature writing and was a co-recipient of the Olive Branch Award for coverage of international security issues. His first nonfiction book, Out of Eden: An Odyssey of Ecological Invasion, was a National Book Award finalist and won the Overseas Press Club Award for environmental reporting. Simon & Schuster will publish his next book in 2013.
Siddhartha Deb is an Indian author who was educated in India and at Columbia University in New York. His first novel, The Point of Return, is semi-autobiographical in nature and set in a fictional hill-station that closely resembles his native Shillong in India's Northeast. His second novel, Surface, also set in Northeast India, is about a disillusioned Sikh journalist. His first non-fiction book, The Beautiful And the Damned: A Portrait of the New India (Viking Penguin, 2011) won the PEN Open Book Award. He has also contributed to the Boston Globe, The Guardian, The Nation, The New Statesman, Harper's, the London Review of Books, and the Times Literary Supplement. He currently teaches creative writing at The New School in New York.
Benoit Denizet-Lewis is a contributing writer with The New York Times Magazine, where he covers stories about addiction, youth culture, sex and sexuality, sports, and music. He’s also the editor-in-chief of the Good Men Project Magazine, and writes for Deadspin, The Daily Beast, and The Advocate. He has previously contributed to Sports Illustrated, Details, Slate, Out, Boston Magazine, and others. He is the author of America Anonymous: Eight Addicts in Search of a Life, a narrative account of three years in the lives of eight men and women struggling with addictions, and American Voyeur: Dispatches From the Far Reaches of Modern Life, a collection of previously published writing. In an effort to get out of the house more, he teaches and speaks nationally on a variety of topics, including addiction, youth culture, and sex and sexuality. He’s currently working on his next book, about dogs in America.
Sasha Frere-Jones is a writer, music critic, and musician, best known for his work as the pop music critic for The New Yorker, where he has been on staff since 2004. He is also an editor-at-large of The Daily. He has written for Pretty Decorating, ego trip, Hit It And Quit It, Mean, Slant, The New York Post, The Wire, The Village Voice, Slate, Spin, and The New York Times. He blogs at www.sashafrerejones.tumblr.com and plays in the bands Piñata and Calvinist.
Tad Friend is the author of the memoir Cheerful Money: Me, My Family, and the Last Days of Wasp Splendor, (Little, Brown and Company, 2009). He has been a contributing editor at various publications, including Esquire, prior to becoming a staff writer at The New Yorker in 1998.
Sarah Garland is a staff writer for The Hechinger Report. She has written for The New York Times, Newsweek, Newsday, The New York Sun, The New York Post, The Village Voice, New York Magazine and Marie Claire. She was a 2009 recipient of the Spencer Fellowship in Education Reporting at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and received her master’s degree from New York University as a Henry M. MacCracken fellow. Her first book is Gangs in Garden City: How Immigration, Segregation and Youth Violence Are Changing America’s Suburbs (Nation Books, 2009).
Michelle Goldberg is a senior contributing writer for The Daily Beast/Newsweek and author of The Means of Reproduction (Penguin Press HC, 2009) and The New York Times bestseller Kingdom Coming: The Rise of Christian Nationalism (W.W. Norton, 2006), which delved into some of the reddest precincts of the United States to expose the ascendant politico-religious fundamentalism dominating the Republican Party and, at the time, the Bush administration. It was a finalist for the 2007 New York Public Library Helen Bernstein Award for Excellence in Journalism.
Elizabeth Green is a reporter and editor at Gotham Schools and also writes for The New York Times Magazine and other publications. She is currently working on a book called How to Build a Better Teacher. She previously covered education for the New York Sun and for U.S. News & World Report magazine.
Matt Gross is a food and travel writer who works for publications such as Saveur, Afar, WorldHum.com, and The New York Times, where he wrote the Frugal Traveler column and contributes to the series “Getting Lost.” He also writes “The Voyager,” a column for Currency, a personal-finance website run by American Express, and blogs at “The Minor Glories.” His new book is The Turk Who Loved Apples and Other Tales of Losing My Way Around the World (Da Capo Press, 2013).
Virginia Heffernan is a culture and media critic for The New York Times. She has worked as a fact-checker for The New Yorker, a writer at VH1, an editor at Harper's and Talk, as well as served as TV critic for Slate. She also holds a doctorate in English literature from Harvard, wrote the Emmy-nominated Matthew's Murder for MTV, and has been anthologized (with co-writer and former roommate Mike Albo) in the comedic-monologue collection Extreme Exposure. In June 2002, the Columbia Journalism Review named Heffernan one of its "Ten Young Editors to Watch."
Jack Hitt, is the author of a new book, Bunch of Amateurs: A Search for the American Character. Most days, he’s a contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine, and occasionally contributes to the public radio program, This American Life. His book, Off the Road: A Modern-Day Walk Down the Pilgrim’s Route into Spain, was made into a motion picture, “The Way,” directed by Emilio Estévez and starring Martin Sheen. His work has won the Peabody, Livingston and Pope Awards. His Harper’s report on American anthropology was selected for a collection of the best science writing of the past 25 years, The Best of the Best of American Science Writing. His work also appears in Harper’s, Rolling Stone and Wired. He is currently touring a one-man show, “Making Up the Truth”—a series of his slightly incredible real-life stories woven in with the contemporary brain science that nearly answers the question, “Is any of this true?”
Kathryn Joyce is the author of Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement (Beacon Press, 2009) and a book on adoption and religion forthcoming from PublicAffairs in 2013. Her freelance writing has appeared in The Atlantic, The Nation, Mother Jones, Ms., Slate, Salon, Newsweek, Religion Dispatches, The Daily Beast, The American Prospect, The Harvard Divinity Bulletin, The Massachusetts Review, Conscience, Search, The Public Eye, RH Reality Check and other publications. She is a 2011 Knight-Luce Fellow in Global Religion Reporting and a recipient of the 2010 “Maggie Award.” She is an associate editor at Religion Dispatches and former managing editor of The Revealer.org, a project of the New York University Center for Religion and Media.
Steven Levy bootstrapped his way into journalism in 1975 and began writing about technology in 1981—the people who make it, and its effects on all of us. He’s been pursuing this story ever since. Before he joined Wired magazine as a full time writer in 2008, he was a freelancer and worked at Newsweek as senior editor, chief technology correspondent, and writer of a column called “The Technologist.” He’s written six books including Hackers, Crypto, The Perfect Thing and, most recently, In the Plex, based on immersion reporting with Google. His writing has appeared in a wide range of publications including The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, Harper’s and Premiere.
Larissa MacFarquhar has been a staff writer at The New Yorker since 1998. Her subjects have included John Ashbery and Edward Albee, among many others. Before joining The New Yorker, MacFarquhar was a senior editor at Lingua Franca and an advisory editor at The Paris Review.
D.T. Max is a graduate of Harvard University and a staff writer at The New Yorker. His new book, Every Love Story Is A Ghost Story: A Life of David Foster Wallace, (Viking Penguin, 2012) was a New York Times bestseller. He is also the author of The Family That Couldn't Sleep: A Medical Mystery. He has reported mostly for the New Yorker and The New York Times Magazine on everything from the quagga, an extinct relative of the zebra that a South African taxidermist tried to breed back to life, to the president’s speechwriters in the days after September 11th. He lives in New Jersey with his wife, their two young children, and a rescued beagle who came to them named Max.
Katha Pollitt is an American feminist poet, essayist and critic best known for her bimonthly column "Subject to Debate" in The Nation magazine. She is the author of four essay collections and two books of poetry, including, most recently, Learning to Drive: And Other Life Stories (Random House, 2007), a collection of personal essays. Her writing focuses on political and social issues, including abortion rights, racism, welfare reform, feminism and poverty.
Matthew Power is a freelance print and radio journalist and a contributing editor at Harper’s magazine. He is a three-time finalist (2005, 2006, 2007) for the Livingston Award for Young Journalists in the International Reporting category, and a 2006 finalist for the Kurt Schork Award in International Journalism. His work is anthologized in Best American Science and Nature Writing 2005, Best American Spiritual Writing 2006, Best American Travel Writing 2007, Best American Travel Writing 2009, Best American Nonrequired Reading 2009, Best American Travel Writing 2010, and is reprinted in the textbook Writing as Surviving. He was a 2010-2011 Knight-Wallace Fellow.
Frank Rose writes about the future of media. He is the author of The Art of Immersion: How the Digital Generation Is Remaking Hollywood, Madison Avenue, and the Way We Tell Stories (Norton, 2011), about how the Internet is changing storytelling. It was inspired by his work as a contributing editor at Wired. Earlier books include West of Eden: The End of Innocence at Apple Computer; The Agency: William Morris and the Hidden History of Show Business; and Into the Heart of the Mind: An American Quest for Artificial Intelligence. He was a contributing writer at Fortune and Premiere, and contributing editor at Esquire and Travel + Leisure. He’s also written for The New York Times Magazine, The Los Angeles Times Magazine, New York, Vanity Fair, and Rolling Stone. Jennifer Senior is a staff writer for New York Magazine and currently working on a book called All Joy and No Fun: The Parent’s Paradox, to be published by Ecco/HarperCollins.
Patrick Symmes is a writer and journalist who covers insurgencies, global environmental problems, travel, and the geopolitics that underlie them all, for magazines like Harper’s, Outside, and Condé Nast Traveler, as well as Newsweek, GQ, Wired, Mother Jones, The New York Times, and the Telegraph in London. He specializes in Latin America, particularly Cuba, but has worked from Patagonia to Phnom Penh, and Cape Town to Kazakhstan. He is the author of The Boys from Dolores (Pantheon, 2007), about what happened to Fidel Castro’s own schoolmates, and Chasing Che (Vintage, 2000), about riding his motorcycle across South America.
Clive Thompson is a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine and a columnist for Wired magazine, focusing on science, technology, and culture. He also writes for Fast Company and other places and blogs at collision detection. In 2002, he was awarded a Knight Science Journalism Fellowship at MIT.
Tom Vanderbilt writes on design, technology, science, and culture, among other subjects, for many publications, including Wired, Outside, The London Review of Books, The Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, Rolling Stone, The New York Times Magazine, and Popular Science. He is contributing editor to Artforum and the design magazine Print and I.D., contributing writer of the popular blog Design Observer, and columnist for Slate magazine. His most recent book is the New York Times bestseller Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us), (Alfred A. Knopf, 2009). He is also the author of two previous books: Survival City: Adventures Among the Ruins of Atomic America (Princeton Architectural Press, 2002) and The Sneaker Book (The New Press, 1998).