Long Form Stories

Sala Udin’s life is an odyssey that winds through Pittsburgh’s jazzy but poor Lower Hill and into the heat and hostility of the Jim Crow south, then back to a changed and sometimes volatile city. His story, told in A Life on the Hill, is a reflection of the hopes, dreams, fears and frustrations of an often invisible and unheard population. Students at Pittsburgh CAPA collaborated with the Post-Gazette to illustrate scenes from Mr. Udin's life and bring their perspectives to the story. For this project I recorded more than 20 hours of conversation with Mr. Udin, conducted research in Pittsburgh and Mississippi, wrote a 15,000-word narrative, and coordinated with CAPA students producing the illustrations.

The sweeping narrative Gettysburg takes readers into the lives of those who witnessed one of the Civil War's bloodiest battles. To research this project, I unearthed dozens of original documents, letters and public records as well as long-out-of-print books. The resulting 15,000-word story was nominated for Pulitzer Prize in 2014. To produce this project, I coordinated a team that included artists, designers and editors. Together, we produced a stunning web presentation. In addition to writing, organizing and editing, my involvement included production of the accompanying videos, and creation of the interactive panoramic pictures that place readers on the battlefield.

Pittsburgh: The Dark Years begins with the murder of three gangsters on a busy downtown street crowded with workers on lunch break. From there, the project takes readers into the headquarters and speakeasies that crowded the city's streets during prohibition, and reveals some of the violent, sordid characters that controlled the criminal underworld. For this project, I served as writer, researcher, picture editor and videographer. And I assisted artist Dan Marsula and developer Laura Schneiderman during design and production.

On a warm autumn day in 1964, four young men from Liverpool, England, spent five hours in Pittsburgh and changed some lives forever. The Beatles in the 'Burgh, 1964 is a moment-by-moment account of that visit that includes a wild adventure by three teenage girls and a young man's solo journey to a strange city to pursue a dream. I was the reporter, researcher and writer for this project, as well as the photographer, picture editor and designer.