INTERVIEW : IRA GLASS : PART III
Do you recommend to “beginners” that they be fearless about putting work out there to be judged, as long as they know it’s going to be a learning experience?
Yes. It was interesting to me these last two years watching Mike Birbiglia turn himself into a movie maker and at every stage he both had the arrogance of believing that he could do it and the humility to know that he wasn’t any good yet. He had a rough script, and it was okay, I guess, not quite there and he got into the Sundance Screenwriting Lab and they paired him with Mike White who’s an amazing screenwriter who gave him notes, but then he also went out to talk at length to Miguel Arteta and Noah Baumbach and other filmmakers, and he showed the script around to lots of people. David Wayne is another filmmaker. He showed it to Lena Dunham. He really just got input from a lot of people and got them to explain to him: “Okay, here’s how to handle this or that.” I just had incredible respect for it, and when we started to put the film together, he hired this amazing cinematographer who could teach him that world, and we had this amazing editor.He knew what he didn’t know and then he used other people’s expertise to pull him forward. I feel like that’s how you get there. I think so many of us are too shy to. We don’t want to be a bother to other people. We don’t know how to approach other people, and I think that’s a huge advantage that he had just in terms of his personality — he wasn’t self-conscious about that somehow. He knew he needed the help and he was secure enough to just ask. In a way that, for most of my life, I haven’t been so able to do. He was much bolder than I ever would be.[[MORE]]
Right, you came with $50 bucks. He just asked. Do you think that most people are willing to give advice? That people do so much work toward reaching a pinnacle in their career or their lives, learning all sorts of things, but might not get asked — if someone would only ask them, they’d be willing to open up and share what they’ve learned?I think it’s a really delicate thing and people have to be approached in the right way.Does it depend on the level that they’re at or just the way in which they’re asked?It depends on all those things. It’s really just like a human connection you’re trying to make. With Mike, I think he was performing his one-man show and some of these people would come and see the one-man show and the one-man show is amazing and he’s so talented. They would come backstage and chat with him afterwards and he would get to know them that way. They have respect for him even though he was not a filmmaker yet.They knew he’s got something on the ball, I guess. He had that going for him. Occasionally, I’ll be giving a speech or something and somebody will press a CD in my hands who has never done anything and a lot of people are like, “I’m busy. I have stuff that I’m supposed to be getting to that I’m not even getting to,” and they don’t feel they can take on fifteen minutes of listening or half an hour of listening and write somebody a note. It’s a thing. They’d have to be pretty convincing or make the story seem compelling. The best thing that would get me into it would be if the story they were telling on the CD had some promise for me where I felt like, “Oh that just sounds good. Even if they can’t totally execute it, I kind of want to hear that.” That’s the thing that sells me.In your Goucher College commencement address you said to students: “You will be stupid.” I’m curious if that ever stops, the whole being-stupid thing.If you’re lucky that never stops. Ideally, if you’re trying to do creative work the worst thing that could happen is that it gets too easy and then you’re doing the same thing over and over. If you’re successful what’s happening is you’re constantly setting new goals for yourself and inventing new things and trying things that are really hard. That’s been one of the great things about doing the radio show is that we can constantly reset what we’re doing to make it hard again, and I have to say, it’s really hard. It’s easy for me to write a radio story. I know how to write a radio story, but making a show is really difficult still and I feel like that’s a sign that we’re doing the right thing. It’s like we’re constantly trying to invent stuff we’ve never done.Thanks, Ira.

INTERVIEW : IRA GLASS : PART III

Do you recommend to “beginners” that they be fearless about putting work out there to be judged, as long as they know it’s going to be a learning experience?

Yes. It was interesting to me these last two years watching Mike Birbiglia turn himself into a movie maker and at every stage he both had the arrogance of believing that he could do it and the humility to know that he wasn’t any good yet. He had a rough script, and it was okay, I guess, not quite there and he got into the Sundance Screenwriting Lab and they paired him with Mike White who’s an amazing screenwriter who gave him notes, but then he also went out to talk at length to Miguel Arteta and Noah Baumbach and other filmmakers, and he showed the script around to lots of people. David Wayne is another filmmaker. He showed it to Lena Dunham. He really just got input from a lot of people and got them to explain to him: “Okay, here’s how to handle this or that.” I just had incredible respect for it, and when we started to put the film together, he hired this amazing cinematographer who could teach him that world, and we had this amazing editor.

He knew what he didn’t know and then he used other people’s expertise to pull him forward. I feel like that’s how you get there. I think so many of us are too shy to. We don’t want to be a bother to other people. We don’t know how to approach other people, and I think that’s a huge advantage that he had just in terms of his personality — he wasn’t self-conscious about that somehow. He knew he needed the help and he was secure enough to just ask. In a way that, for most of my life, I haven’t been so able to do. He was much bolder than I ever would be.

Read More


INTERVIEW : IRA GLASS : PART II
Joe Franklin had mentioned that your voice has a certain sparkliness to it, and Terry Gross has also talked about her own voice changing over the years as she’s evolved as an interviewer. How do you feel that your voice has changed over the years of being on radio, and how long did it take you to find your natural radio voice — what was that process like?
That’s a really good question. It took me a long time before I performed comfortably on the radio. At the time that I started This American Life I was 36 or 37 and I’d been doing radio since I was a teenager, really. It took me until I was probably 28 or 29 before I sounded okay on the radio, before I was presentable. Then it took another four or five years before I sounded like myself really, and I did all kinds of things to make that happen. I did not sit idly. One is just trying, on the stories that I was filing for the daily news shows on public radio, to sound like myself and not like some news robot, news reader person. 
Another thing was that for five years before I did American Life I did a local show with a friend in Chicago that was on late-night Fridays. One of the reasons I did it was because I wanted to train myself to perform so I would sound like myself, like so I sounded live on the radio and un-train myself from the way that I was used to sounding as an NPR reporter where I sounded like the other NPR reporters. That was a big project. That was a goal of mine to try to sound okay on the radio. By the time I started the radio show, I had been at that for years. Once I started the radio show I do think that my performance on the air evolved and I think mainly I would go through periods of sending more performy or more like I was just talking. I prefer it to sound like I’m just talking, but I think I just go in and out of a groove with that in a way that I think actually listeners wouldn’t notice or care but that I notice and care about.
It is such a distinct thing… After listening to so many episodes you can almost hear where the pauses are going to be or where you come in strong. Does it differ too much from day-to-day life, like a conversation with friends, and when you get on the air do you feel like you’re performing? What do you make of “sincerity” amidst all of that?
Well, I am performing. It would be appropriate to think I’m performing because I am performing. I’m standing in front of a million and a half people or something, or more than that, and that is the classic performing situation. The goal in radio — people sound best on the radio if they talk just the way they really talk, like the greatest radio performers are like that. When it’s working, I do sound like I sound in real life. It’s not so different from when I really talk.
[[MORE]]
You sometimes come across soft with emotion, and sometimes really strong… On the episode called “Our Friend David” where there’s a couplet at the end where he talks about there being a lesson on how to be friends — I think what it means is something essential to living. It was a very powerful piece and when you come back, your voice is very strong and you just talk about how he reworked it. How much do you allow emotion to affect your voice or how do you use that as a way to convey the power of a story?
As a story is playing, I’m listening to the sound of it and listening to the feeling of it and that naturally infects how I’m going to speak at the end of the story. In recent years the way we do the show is that we’re putting it together in the computer, often, in order to record those voice tracks. I’ll have to listen to the last minute or two of the story so my tone matches the rest of the story. Having said that, even talking about it this much is almost like over analyzing what happens. It’s not that hard or that complicated. Like something’s playing and you don’t want to be out of step with it and you just try to get in the right frame of mind. It sounds like you’re living in the same world as the mood of the story and the mood that anybody listening to it would be in. it’s pretty easy. I think even a middling performer like me can pull that off.
Do you have a ritual that you go through before you put a final show together once you have all the pieces together?
No, I have no rituals. I have nothing in that way. It’s funny because sometimes you’ll read about writers’ rituals and the things they have to do to write, and I’ve got none of that. I think in that way I’m more of a hack daily journalist person where I feel like this isn’t that precious what we’re doing. We’re just trying to make something that will be appealing and I’m not very neurotic when it comes to any of that stuff. I really, really like editing and I like writing, and I don’t especially like performing on the radio but I’m okay with it. I feel like we’re here to make a thing and that’s our job and it’s all very straight forward.

You don’t particularly like performing on the radio except it seems like you’ve done it for so much of your life. Do you find that it’s a necessary tool to get across what you want to say or present stories the way you want to present them?
For the first 10 years that I worked on the radio I was really a behind the scenes person. I was a producer. I was tape editor and did those kinds of jobs. I was a writer. At some point I realized for the stories to live the way I thought they should live it was inefficient to try to convince other performers to do the lines the way that I was hearing them in my head or to write the lines the way that I felt they should be written. At some point it was just like, I should just do this myself. Honestly, the performing part on the radio is the only part that doesn’t come naturally. At this point, all the rest of it comes very naturally and has for a long time, the editing and the writing and the structuring of the story. All that’s the part that I do without thinking, but the performing of it I really do have to think through like, “Wait, what do I sound like again? How do I do this?”
Haven’t you passed the 10,000-hour mark by now for this?
Yes, oh my god. I passed the 10,000-hour mark when I was in my 30s or 20s even probably. I started when I was 19 in radio, but I was a slow learner.
Many, many people respect you and your work so much — even idolize you in some ways. We’re all going through the growing phases of our own careers and creative paths. It’s easy to look at Ira Glass and This American Life and feel like you have it all figured out — yet you are very humble and even self-effacing in reflecting on your own work. You have that great quote talking about beginners and things that you had wished you had learned sooner — but now that you’re well into an established career, are you saying that it doesn’t eventually just come easy? Is it still a lot of work all the time? Are there still things that trip you up or advice that you wish someone in their 70s would give someone in their 50s?
To this, I would just say that as you grow older the parts of your personality that were a problem for you and that caused all sorts of grief when you were in your 20s — it’s not like those ever completely go away. It’s more like you just figure out how to manage them so they don’t give you grief anymore and don’t give grief to those around you. 
It’s like you don’t change into another person but you learn to manage the person you are in a way that’s just more satisfying to you, if you’re lucky enough to figure it out. At work it’s the same thing, where there are certain things that what used to be really hard for me that got enormously easier. Like I didn’t know how to structure a radio story for a long time. I didn’t know how to write one. I was a terrible writer for a long time. There are samples of work on Transom that I did in my sixth or seventh year in radio and it’s terrible. I’m just terrible.
There’s a manifesto that I wrote and some mp3s of me when I’m 26 or 27 and I suck, terrible writing, terrible reading. It’s terrible. Those things, certain things like the writing and the editing and figuring out what a story is and how to find a story and how to move efficiently to a good version of the story if it can be made into a good story, all that stuff I feel like I didn’t know how to do and I then I learned how to do it and there’s no undoing it. It’s not hard for me now because I learned it.
All that stuff is now easy, actually. Stories can be hard to figure out but the mechanics of how do I do this and am I going to be able to do this and can I get do it quickly? — I know that I can do it and I can do it quickly and it’s going to be fine. Other parts like the performing, I’m not a natural performer in that way, and that’s just not in me in the same way and so I will always be playing catch-up with that and every time I sit down to the microphone I do have to collect myself and think, “Great. How do I do this again? Okay, good. I can do this.” 
I think that that’s normal. I think for most people they are parts of the job that they then come to master and then there are the parts where it’s like, “Oh right, I got to do this again.” They’re perfectly competent at those parts, but there’s always a little bit of having to consciously handle oneself.
I’m sure that with modern technology, many a budding storyteller and journalist with an iPhone out in the world tries to make their own type of This American Life podcast. I’m sure you get hit up for advice all the time which I think leads back to that big quote about how you will get better at what you do with practice…
Well, not just that quote but truthfully like going out of my way to say okay, here’s how I think about how to make these stories, how to find them, how to structure them, how to put them together — and as I mentioned there’s the manifesto I put up at Transom. We put out a comic book years ago. I talked about it in lectures. I’ll do classes with journalism students. There’s a bunch of basic principles for somebody making this stuff — it’s just handy to hear how someone else does it…

Have you ever faced the situation where you are like, “This is not for you.” You tried everything and you tried to guide someone, but you must just hand off what you have as far as advice and say, “Here are the tools and the things that I’ve learned — good luck”?
Wait, you mean, “This is not for you,” like I find somebody who’s such a lame ass that I don’t think they’ll pull it off?
Yes, like it’s just not good work. Do you help guide them away from years of just banging their head against the wall and not putting out a good product, or do you focus mostly on just encouragement and hope that they figure it out one day?
It’s funny, I just saw an edit of this movie that’s coming out called Adult World which is entirely about that premise and it’s by this director called Scott Coffee who I really love. The premise is, it’s a young poet who’s just out of college and she’s horrible. Her parents aren’t poets. They don’t know how to tell her, and her friends, they don’t know anything about poetry. They don’t know how tell her. She’s just horrible and she latches on to an older poet played by John Cusack. 
He plays it like one of the latter career Bill Murray roles and he’s completely a grump and he’s fantastic. There’s scene after scene where he’s restraining himself from saying, “Just stop being a poet. You suck.” It’s that so much of the pleasure of that film, which I guess is weird to be talking about in a blog because it’s not out yet, but it will be out in a couple of months so keep your eyes open for that: Adult World… Anyway, usually, I’m not working with people so intensely that I get to that point where I feel like should I tell them, “Just get out of radio.” I did become aware when I started to give reporters seminars and things that my view of it had shifted. I had always believed that not everybody was as far along, but we were all going off the mountain together and everybody was going to make it and then at some point in teaching people it occurred to me some people really aren’t going to make it. 
The problem is you can’t predict which ones are going to be. I myself, if you hear the work that I did when I was 26 and 27, there was no sign that I’m ever going to be good. In fact, there was a story on the show in the first years that I did when I was in my 20s about chickens, and we were doing a poultry show. We were doing every year back then. The story idea came up, and I was like, “I did this story. I actually did this story that you’re pitching. I did this story when I was in my 20s.” They sent one of the producers, Elise Spiegel, to go listen to the story, and she listened to it, and she was just like, “Wow, there is no sign that you’re ever going to make it. There’s no sign that you have any talent for this at all.”
I think you just can’t predict who’s going to come through, and if you’re the person who’s trying to make work and you’re not as good as you wish you were, the only thing you can do is just make more work and try to look for things that will amuse you to make, like things that are actually exciting to you to make because that will speed you towards solving problems and making the work good, and then do the thing that people do when they’re learning which is show it to lots of people who know better than you how stuff is made and get their advice, which I did too. 
One of the things that nobody tells you when you’re starting off is, right: you can just pay people to look at stuff for you. I used to just pay the NPR reporters who I respected to just look at drafts of things and tell me what I was doing wrong and it was much cheaper than grad school. You give them $50 bucks for half an hour of their time or an hour of their time to just look at a script and tell you where you’re making boneheaded mistakes. I learned an enormous amount that way. You can just give people money and get the advice you need.
See Part I of our Ira Glass interview, and stay tuned for Part III.

INTERVIEW : IRA GLASS : PART II

Joe Franklin had mentioned that your voice has a certain sparkliness to it, and Terry Gross has also talked about her own voice changing over the years as she’s evolved as an interviewer. How do you feel that your voice has changed over the years of being on radio, and how long did it take you to find your natural radio voice — what was that process like?

That’s a really good question. It took me a long time before I performed comfortably on the radio. At the time that I started This American Life I was 36 or 37 and I’d been doing radio since I was a teenager, really. It took me until I was probably 28 or 29 before I sounded okay on the radio, before I was presentable. Then it took another four or five years before I sounded like myself really, and I did all kinds of things to make that happen. I did not sit idly. One is just trying, on the stories that I was filing for the daily news shows on public radio, to sound like myself and not like some news robot, news reader person. 

Another thing was that for five years before I did American Life I did a local show with a friend in Chicago that was on late-night Fridays. One of the reasons I did it was because I wanted to train myself to perform so I would sound like myself, like so I sounded live on the radio and un-train myself from the way that I was used to sounding as an NPR reporter where I sounded like the other NPR reporters. That was a big project. That was a goal of mine to try to sound okay on the radio. By the time I started the radio show, I had been at that for years. Once I started the radio show I do think that my performance on the air evolved and I think mainly I would go through periods of sending more performy or more like I was just talking. I prefer it to sound like I’m just talking, but I think I just go in and out of a groove with that in a way that I think actually listeners wouldn’t notice or care but that I notice and care about.

It is such a distinct thing… After listening to so many episodes you can almost hear where the pauses are going to be or where you come in strong. Does it differ too much from day-to-day life, like a conversation with friends, and when you get on the air do you feel like you’re performing? What do you make of “sincerity” amidst all of that?

Well, I am performing. It would be appropriate to think I’m performing because I am performing. I’m standing in front of a million and a half people or something, or more than that, and that is the classic performing situation. The goal in radio — people sound best on the radio if they talk just the way they really talk, like the greatest radio performers are like that. When it’s working, I do sound like I sound in real life. It’s not so different from when I really talk.

Read More


INTERVIEW : IRA GLASS : PART I
Hello?
Hello?
Hi, Ira. How are you?
Hey, it’s Ira.
Hi, just to let you know this has already started recording.
Noted, we’re on the record. I’m prepared with my important answers to the national security and other public policy questions that will be presented.
Pretty much, have you ever been associated with a member of the Communist Party?
Have I been with the Communist Party? Not the Communist Party, no.
Thank you for making time to do this. We are all really big fans over here. First off, since you recently crossed the 500th episode mark, how has your selection process for topics evolved from the beginning and how do you search out new material for the show?
In the beginning, the premise of the show was that we we were going to apply the tools of journalism to things so small and personal that journalists don’t normally bother with them. We’re trying to have compelling characters and emotional moments and funny moments and, after doing that for a number of years, myself and the producers on the staff became very interested in trying that same kind of story but doing it for the news. More and more, I think, we’ve been tackling things that are in the news — things that other people try to cover in other ways but we do it with stories that are gripping and emotional and more narrative in a very traditional way and less like news features in that newsy news way.
[[MORE]]
One that strikes my mind is the Giant Pool of Money episode where it really went from a massive topic that confused a lot of people and you broke it down in a way that people could understand. Do you feel like that episode was a turning point — did it do that for the show?
I think it did that. Up until then, we had done a ton of stories about things like the war on terror in Guantanamo and Iraq and guns and things and domestic politics. I think that show just got so many people’s attention because at the point that it appeared in 2008, even before the final parts of the crash, it was before the Lehman brothers fell. It stepped back and was explaining phrases that I think all of us were hearing in the news but didn’t quite know what they meant, like mortgage-backed securities.
I remember that I really didn’t know what that even referred to, before we started working on that episode. I think in time, everybody came to learn from the news. A mortgage-backed security is basically just where somebody buys a bunch of mortgages and bundles them up in a pile and then sells them all at once to somebody else. That’s all that is. It’s a fancy phrase for that.
I think that was a really early piece of reporting — explaining it and explaining exactly what was going on in the economy. In that case specifically, the advantage that we had as non-experts was that we could ask the dumb questions that real beat reporters covering economics never would ask. The whole thing came about because one of our producers, Alex Bloomberg, became very interested in answering the question, “Why are banks doing something that banks have never done since the beginning of the history of capitalism: giving out loans to people and not bothering to check if they were able to pay them back?”
There was a standard loan product called a NINA Loan, a No Interest No Asset Loan. The idea of a NINA Loan was that you didn’t have to prove that you had a job or anything. You didn’t have to do anything to show that you could pay back the loan. We opened our show with this guy who had two part-time jobs, made $30,000 or $40,000 a year, who got a $400,000 loan from a bank, and he said, “I wouldn’t have lent me this money. This is too much money.” We were just like, “Why would a bank do that?”
The answer is the bank did that because it wasn’t going to hold on to the loan. It didn’t matter to the bank if anybody ever paid it back. The bank was going to sell the loan. The bank was going to make the loan and then just sell it to these bundlers who were going to bundle it together into these so-called mortgage-backed securities and all the bank cared about was they had this product that they could sell upstream to these other guys.
That show let us do this thing that reporters weren’t doing quite yet which was to go around to all the people in that business, the bankers, the people selling the mortgage-backed securities, everybody trading in these commodities and say to them, “You guys knew this stuff was crap, right? You knew these people couldn’t pay it back. Since they all did know, what did you think was going to happen? How was this going to work out okay?” You got to hear from the people who brought down the world economy, many of them lovely people.

You just said that you approached that from the outside and that’s why you could ask these questions, but now a few years later I think that you’ve done some really big pieces…
Can I say one more thing? Yes, the thing that we can do is we can use the thing which is the unique power of radio which is that radio works best when you’re telling… it lets you get in there and hear from an actual person. You can get to know a person. It’s a very friendly, person-focused medium, unlike a lot of abstract economics reporting and the kind of talking heads reporting that you get when it comes to a lot of public policy issues. The fact that it’s radio lets us, first of all, spend a lot of time trying to figure out who would be a good talker and then basically let the audience meet the actual people. There are certain things that the medium is just particularly good for.
Do you think that this story changed the level of candidness or openness that your interviewees might have, knowing that their answers might implicate them? Has it caused potential interview subjects to be more guarded?
Our influence isn’t quite so big, I think, that the people we are interviewing have much of an awareness usually of who we are. I think among the people who do, if anything, they’ve seen that we treat people pretty fairly. Even in these newsy stories, people get to say their side. We’re not out to get people. We didn’t want to make the people in the mortgage business look like mobsters because they weren’t mobsters. They just messed something up, but they were perfectly nice people in other ways.
You obviously have a viewpoint as a person, but how much do your own opinions or emotions influence a story? I would say from the economic crisis, you knew that it was bad and people got screwed over, but do you just present the story or does your bias come into it, through editing, tone, music and maybe even just energetically?
I think when the show is working well and when journalists work well, it’s really about trying to understand people. You know what I mean? That requires a suspension of judgment, and really, that’s not very hard because generally I feel really curious about why people do the things they do and especially things in a climate with these sorts of consequences…it’s interesting.
Obviously, I think it was terrible what happened with the economy and I think these were greedy people who were out to make a buck and weren’t being careful about what it could do to the rest of us. As they said in the interviews, they were up against competitors and if they didn’t do it somebody else would just do it, and they were just working a job that they ended up in for whatever reason. I don’t know. In general, just even outside of my journalistic job, I don’t feel such a harsh sense of judgment about people.

From my standpoint, it’s so easy to be like “Screw the banks!” but do you feel because you’ve shared some level of candidness and closeness with the people you’ve interviewed, it’s not quite as easy to point fingers and say “Shame on you”?
No, I think there definitely are people who you can say shame on you about. There definitely are. There are things the banks have done that are really selfish and we tax payers ended up holding the bag for it. There’s no question about that. There’re people in that business who are just dicks, but that’s different. That’s a case-by-case basis kind of judgment. I definitely notice when somebody’s a total dick and when the banks do something that just seems ill-advised. 
For example, before the mortgage crisis hit, one of the things the banks did is that they went to the federal government and they lobbied to get leverage requirements lifted or raised and what those are…it’s a technical thing, but basically what it refers to is something really simple, which is how much money do they have to have on hand to cover all the loans that you’re putting out?
The banks were saying these new financial instruments were so sophisticated in the way that we monitored them and so on, so we don’t need to keep as much money lying around as the federal regulations currently require, and they got them raised. That was a huge problem. That really was a problem and the federal government eventually had to step in as part of the bailout and save them.
One of the things that put them in such bad straits was that the leverage requirements were raised. Obviously, I think that was just greed. There’s just no two ways about that, greed made them want to do that. They wanted to lend out more money and make more money and obviously they were completely wrong. They were wrong.
That’s a dick move that we ended up paying for. I don’t have a problem saying that either to you or on the radio.

Stay tuned for part two of three, coming soon to an Ace Hotel blog near you. And have a look at our Desert Gold schedule during Coachella for more from NPR deep in the desert in the next couple weeks at Ace Hotel & Swim Club in Palm Springs.

INTERVIEW : IRA GLASS : PART I

Hello?

Hello?

Hi, Ira. How are you?

Hey, it’s Ira.

Hi, just to let you know this has already started recording.

Noted, we’re on the record. I’m prepared with my important answers to the national security and other public policy questions that will be presented.

Pretty much, have you ever been associated with a member of the Communist Party?

Have I been with the Communist Party? Not the Communist Party, no.

Thank you for making time to do this. We are all really big fans over here. First off, since you recently crossed the 500th episode mark, how has your selection process for topics evolved from the beginning and how do you search out new material for the show?

In the beginning, the premise of the show was that we we were going to apply the tools of journalism to things so small and personal that journalists don’t normally bother with them. We’re trying to have compelling characters and emotional moments and funny moments and, after doing that for a number of years, myself and the producers on the staff became very interested in trying that same kind of story but doing it for the news. More and more, I think, we’ve been tackling things that are in the news — things that other people try to cover in other ways but we do it with stories that are gripping and emotional and more narrative in a very traditional way and less like news features in that newsy news way.

Read More


A sneak peek at our Rookie 1st Year Anniversary Party at Ace New York. It was wicked boring — like, look at these people. Zzzzzzzzzzz.

Photo by Alyssa Laurel Ringler

A sneak peek at our Rookie 1st Year Anniversary Party at Ace New York. It was wicked boring — like, look at these people. Zzzzzzzzzzz.


Photo by Alyssa Laurel Ringler


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