Christopher Goffard

The 2014 Pulitzers: A gap year for features

By April 15, 2014

The Pulitzer judges’ decision* not to award a prize in Features Writing on Monday was disappointing but not unprecedented.** The last (and only other) gap occurred 10 years ago, when stories by Robert Lee Hotz (Los Angeles Times), Anne Hull … Read more

Best of Narrative, 2013

By December 30, 2013

For our second annual Best of Narrative roundup, our selectors reported an anguishing task: so many great pieces, so few berths. Enjoy these top picks from 2013. And Happy New Year! AUDIO … Read more

L.A. Times reporter Christopher Goffard on structure, sympathy and how to make a story go: "The same thing that’s going to make people sit through a movie will make them sit through a 10,000-word series"

By Words September 10, 2010

For “Project 50: Four walls and a bed,” our latest Notable Narrative, reporter Christopher Goffard spent two years following a Los Angeles-area program aimed at finding the most at-risk homeless and giving them a place to live. Goffard, … Read more

Picturing community: an interview with Los Angeles Times’ photographer Francine Orr

By Images December 29, 2009

Photographer Francine Orr had experience reporting on poverty and humanitarian crises around the globe. But while working on “Gimme Shelter,” an audio slide show about L.A.-area homeless people living under a bridge, she found plenty to cover—and plenty to fear—right in her own back yard. [caption id="attachment_1488" align="alignleft" width="176" caption="L.A. Times/Francine Orr"][/caption] Orr spoke about the dangers of reporting on mentally ill addicts: "There’s such a history of random violence along the river. Everything is okay there until it’s not, and sometimes you don’t have warning before it changes. I always had to be aware of who was standing behind me, because I didn’t want someone to smash the back of my head while I was doing my work." And on how she views journalists' responsibilities to subjects, Orr had this to offer: "I’m a journalist; I’m not a social worker. If I do my job well, I present the story in a truthful manner, in an accurate manner, in a somewhat compassionate manner. I leave it to the viewer, to the reader, to respond. If they feel there is a need or an injustice that requires some action, that’s their role. My role is to present the story." Read the full interview. Read more