2015 in Words

Hangin' with my pals at a KKK-Neo Nazi Confederate flag rally back in July. Photo: Courtesy Steve Eberhardt
Where did 2015 go? I'm not quite sure. If you didn't see much of me, it's because I was probably somewhere getting berated by politicians, hanging out in Myrtle Beach, or geeking out about Atlanta. Oh, there was some big news too: I moved across town from Creative Loafing to Atlanta magazine back in July. It wasn't an easy decision. But it was the right move at the right time. I couldn't be happier to be working with Steve and Scott—two fellow CL alum—and host of incredibly talented editors who help make sure I don't mess up the magazine's glossy pages (among many other things).

I've got some stories already in the works for 2016. I can't wait to share them with y'all. Before I do, here's a short list of the stories that I was most proud of in 2015. I hope you enjoy them if you didn't have the chance to read them yet.

The New Georgia Problem: Millions were raised, thousands of voter applications went missing, and a lawsuit was filed in Rep. Stacey Abrams’ bid to hold Georgia’s largest voter registration drive in two decades. But something isn’t right. (Creative Loafing)

Creative Loafing’s 2015 Golden Sleaze Awards: Recognizing the General Assembly’s awful, absurd, and asinine actions during the legislative session. My favorite part? That glow-in-the-dark jellyfish made it into the Gold Dome. (Creative Loafing)

What's next for Atlanta Public Schools? The school system’s historic cheating trial verdict has closed the books on one of the city’s darkest moments. (Creative Loafing)

Living on death row in Tennessee: 'The rollercoaster is exhausting' Thirty-four inmates are volleyed between life and death as the state grapples with lawsuits on the constitutionality of legal injection and the electric chair. (Guardian)

Unanswered: Metro Atlanta police officers have fatally shot at least 75 people since 2010. In some cases the use of deadly force has been questionable. Local leaders could make reforms to prevent future shootings now. Will they? (Creative Loafing)

Don't be a tourist: Too many Atlantans sit on the sidelines when it comes to shaping the city. That needs to change. (Creative Loafing)

'Still a racist nation:' American bigotry on full display at KKK rally in South Carolina. (Guardian)

Owner of Mississippi's last abortion clinic won't stop fighting for her patients: The Jackson Women’s Health Organization is threatened by a 2012 Mississippi law that would limit access to abortions. With the clinic’s fate in the supreme court’s hands, Diane Derzis is focused on the survival of ‘a place that cares.’ (Guardian)

Back on Track: The man who saved MARTA believes it can save us all. Will we get on board? (Atlanta)

Ranking the 55 men and women who run metro Atlanta: From Nathan Deal to Killer Mike, I helped put together this exhaustive list for Atlanta's "Power" issue. (Atlanta)

The Sad and Beautiful World of Sparklehorse's Mark Linkous: Five years after the death of Sparklehorse leader Mark Linkous, Max Blau talks with many of the idiosyncratic songwriter's closest friends and collaborators, shedding light on an artist who compelled listeners to heed the beauty of darkness. (Pitchfork)

How less than six square miles could determine Atlanta’s next mayor: A seismic shift in the city’s racial makeup means two Atlanta annexation campaigns are being closely watched. (Atlanta)

In addition, some kind individuals nominated me for awards for my work in 2014. I was a finalist for the Atlanta Press Club's Rising Star given to a journalist under 30, one of the Chicago Headline Club's Peter Lisagor Awards for my Jason Molina profile for the Chicago Reader, and four Association of Alternative Newsweeklies awards (three with Creative Loafing, one with the Chicago Reader). For the second year in a row, CL's "Fresh Loaf" won the best blog award. It was bittersweet to see that happen as I was leaving the paper. But I have little doubt Thomas, Rodney, and company will be back for the three-peat in 2015. Oh, and that Sparklehorse story? That was picked up by both Longform and Longreads, which was pretty neat to see that happen. Not a bad year at all.
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