Writing has always been a cornerstone of my career. It’s varied in form, but it’s historically focused on celebrating artists and critiquing arts and culture. Whether I’ve written about a person or a phenomenon, if I’ve told your story well, it’s because I’ve merged my own instincts with being malleable and teachable—it’s because I’ve listened.
Below are some select samples that show my wide-ranging abilities to shape narratives with words.
OUT Cover Story, Andrew Garfield (March 2018)
For an actor, Prior Walter might be one of the most daunting characters ever written. He’s the consummately tormented, AIDS-afflicted gay man at the center of Angels in America, a 1980s-set, two-part, seven-plus-hour play that covers political, spiritual, sexual, medical, and metaphysical ground while swirling around the plights of its lead. …Andrew Garfield, who played Prior in last summer’s National Theatre production of Angels, and reprises the role on Broadway this spring, was shaken by the task. His first exposure to Kushner’s opus was the 2003 HBO miniseries adaptation, starring Meryl Streep and Al Pacino, and directed by Mike Nichols. Garfield was studying at London’s Central School of Speech and Drama at the time.
out FEATURE story, We the animals (AUG. 2018)
"Love is not a clean thing,” says actress Sheila Vand, whose mother character, simply called Ma, is the only female presence in We the Animals, the messy, masterful adaptation of Justin Torres’s acclaimed 2011 novel. “We’re not born with an instruction manual on how to love each other or love ourselves, and we’re all a little bit broken,” she says. In every sense, We the Animals thrives on this idea — the permission to be broken and not hide it. The film’s director, Jeremiah Zagar, says, “An amazing movie has to be pretty close to being horrible,” and that liberating dichotomy fires up each grainy frame of his vision of a Latino-American family in upstate New York.
out cover story, Ellen degeneres (Dec. 2016)
In a career that’s spanned more than 35 years, Ellen DeGeneres, 58, has almost always made daily life — and not people — the butt of her jokes, including on her popular 1990s sitcom, Ellen, which was canceled by ABC in 1998, roughly a year after she (and her onscreen counterpart) came out as gay. At the time, the media response reaffirmed DeGeneres’s comedic philosophy. “I was the punch line of lots of jokes,” she says. “I laughed at some, but I realized there’s somebody on the other side of them. It’s cruel. I’ve never liked mean comedy, but that became even more important to me after I was the brunt of it.”
out feature story, ugandan artist leilah babirye (March 2018)
When I call Leilah Babirye en route to our interview in Manhattan’s West Village, she answers, and starts wailing into the phone. Her bike was just stolen, and though she tried to chase the thief, she wasn’t fast enough. For Babirye, a lesbian Ugandan artist who’s been seeking asylum in the U.S. for more than two years, this isn’t just a theft of property — this is an assault on her livelihood. Through Uber Eats and other services, Babirye depends on her bike as a full-time delivery person, and she depends on that modest income to make ends meet. And yet, when I get to Babirye roughly 20 minutes later, her tears are dry, and her face is restored to express the what’s-next endurance of a woman who fled her native country for fear of death.
out cover story, colton haynes (Sept. 2016)
Colton Haynes is kicking my ass. We’re playing pool in the 28-year-old’s Hollywood Hills home, and while he should be celebrating how many balls he’s sunk in mere minutes, this isn’t the activity he was hoping for. “There was an estate sale down the street!” says the avid bargain-hunter. “But I think we missed it.” The pool table itself, Haynes says with giddy excitement, is a pricey piece he snatched for much less than it’s worth from “some rich lady in Tarzana.” And yet it’s not the highlight of the house, nor is the walk-in closet with everything from studded loafers to rubber Maleficent horns, or the bright bouquets on the dining room table from a very persistent stalker.
out cover story, Ellen page & Julianne Moore (OCT. 2015)
Ellen Page and Julianne Moore were both in New York City on June 26, when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of marriage equality. Page was shooting a movie, and she remembers a lot of “really exciting, positive energy” that day, not least because she was driving around with a colleague who’s also gay. High on Moore’s list of recollections were the traffic-stopping takeover of Pride weekend and a post-ruling statement from President Barack Obama. “He essentially said, ‘When we are all more equal, we are all more free,’ and it was a really beautiful thing to say,” Moore says. “Because we were all holding our breath, thinking, Come on, this has got to work. If it doesn’t work, what does it say about us as a nation?
out Essay, “I lost it at the black party” (july 2015)
At first, the Black Party feels like a horror movie. I’m ushered into a vast warehouse that’s dark, barring the random shaft of blood-red neon light. Like the transgressive inverse of Catholic school students, the thousands of gay men that crisscross in front of me are mostly wearing the night’s unofficial uniform of leather harnesses, which can be menacing to those not down with the fetish. The music, a perpetual, monotonous unce-unce of bass-heavy electronica, is occasionally streaked with a familiar cinematic sound effect—the kind that usually accompanies a serial killer stabbing a knife. I move in deeper, and I slip through the first of many partitions—vinyl meat-locker strip curtains—which are less ironic in that we fleshy men are being herded in like cattle than they are evocative of scenes from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.