A list of writers

OK, so because I was ignoring the internet for most of the weekend I didn’t pay much attention to the Gay Talese thing until this morning. So while standing at the home desk with this morning’s coffee I wanted to see if I could do any better. The below is a list of women journalists, critics, and nonfiction writers who inspire me and/or I admire and/or whose bylines I seek out simply because they’re good at what they do. In no particular order, by no means exhaustive, heavy on music & culture writers because that’s what I read a great deal of, I did cheat a bit by looking around at the piles of magazines laying about the desk and nearby bookshelf and used titles for memory clues, and I didn’t include a number of people I know personally and/or have/currently work with as I felt that might be playing favorites in some way. Included brief IDs for some names, figured the names who I didn’t ID needed no intro.

Also: am sharing not to be one of those not-all-men asshats but as an invitation for others to tell me what women journos they read on the regular as well. Like I said, what came to my mind is heavy on arts/culture and the publications I regularly read so am always looking for more bylines to pay attention to.

Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times‘s crime fiction columnist since the late 1980s—I know I just said this list is in no particular order but Stasio immediately came to mind for me because in many ways she’s the platonic ideal of a critic to me: highly informative, economically entertaining, and somebody you trust not because you agree with everything she says or her tastes, but because you have utter faith in her succinct ability to communicate what’s in her brain without wasting your time.

Andrea ‘Enthal, who penned the Underground column for SPIN pre-Byron Coley, and who was responsible for making me aware/turning me onto the very idea that things I had never heard about or known existed were worth seeking out and experiencing for myself.

The late art critic & historian/curator Arlene Raven, Baltimore-born, Hopkins-educated, who I had never heard about until her 2006 death, and since then the 1989 book she edited, Art in the Public Interest, has become as interesting and oft-referred to text for me as Daniel Bell’s The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism.

The late Molly Ivins, political columnist/reporter & OG badass

Ellen Willis, music critic and formidable essayist

The late Jill Johnston, dance critic and utter original

Alma Guillermoprieto, Mexican journalist and longtime Latin American correspondent for the New Yorker, The New York Review of Books

Barbara Ehrenreich

Jamilah Lemieux, culture critic

Lorrain Ali, veteran music & culture critic/reporter

Danyel Smith, music and features writer

Mona Eltahawy

Rebecaa Solnit

dream hampton, veteran music/culture writer

Geeta Dayal, music/features writer

Lucy Lippard, art critic

Amy Taubin, film critic

Carol Cooper, veteran music/culture writer, early Spin introduced me to her byline

Laila Lalami, The Nation contributor/essayist

Caitlin Moran, British music/culture writer, co-creator of the fab TV series Raised by Wolves

Melissa Gira Grant

Catherine Taft, art critic/curator

Naomi Klein

Melissa Harris-Perry

Sylvie Simmons, music writer

Gina Arnold, music writer

Donna Gaines, music writer

Molly Haskell, film writer

Jamaica Kincaid

Janet Kutner, Dallas art critic

Libby Lumpkin, art critic

Ingrid Sischy, art writer/editor

Susan Faludi

Joy Press, music & arts writer

Rachel Kushner, Artforum & Bomb contributor, in addition to being a novelist

Linda Yablonsky, longtime Artforum contributor and veteran art critic

Tricia Romano, features writer

Ann Powers, music writer/editor

Rosalind Krauss, art critic, October co-founding editor

Jessica Hopper, music writer/editor/visionary

Julianne Escobedo Shepard, music & pop culture writer

Sia Michel, features writer/editor

Lillian Roxon, music critic

Hannah McGill, film critic

Andrea Grimes, Texas Observer, investigative reporter/culture critic

Heather Havrilesky, one of the many funny-smart writers that the late, great suck.com clued me into.

Melissa del Bosque, Texas Observer investigative reporter

Michelle Tea, essayist

Anne Midgette, classical music critic/reporter

Karen Durbin, veteran film/TV critic

Joan Acocella, New Yorker dance critic

Katy Vine, Texas Monthly features writer

Pamela Colloff, Texas Monthly features writer

Mimi Swartz, Texas Monthly features writer

Emily Nussbaum, New Yorker TV critic

Karina Longworth, film critic/writer

Molly Lambert, all-purpose pop culture writer and assassin of trite, conventional thought