Notable Narratives

Reflections on classic stories that endure through time, or on new narratives that expand the possibilities of story work.

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Skye’s the Limit

By Notable Narratives November 16, 2004

DeGregory chronicles the efforts of a 13-year-old devout Christian girl and her backstage mom to make the girl a pop star. DeGregory deftly writes for both believer and nonbeliever: Her words can be taken ironically or straight. She provides the … Read more

Mrs. Kelly’s Monster

By Notable Narratives November 16, 2004

Franklin leads his readers through the grisly, tense terrain of brain surgery, moment by moment. We experience the story as if it were live reporting: Franklin tells it in present tense, sound by sound, image by image. The pop, pop, … Read more

The Hurt Between the Lines

By Notable Narratives November 16, 2004

In this final installment of the Times race series, a reporter turns her attention to another journalistic effort to address race in America. The Akron Beacon Journal won a Pulitzer Prize for its series exploring the racial attitudes of its … Read more

Which Man’s Army

By Notable Narratives November 16, 2004

Holmes spent a year reporting this story about two drill sergeants—one black and one white—in a company at Fort Knox, Ky. The piece chronicles their jockeying for power, advancement and recognition. The men’s candor is remarkable—their comments about each other … Read more

Lost in the Music

By Notable Narratives November 16, 2004

Stabler’s series about a black music prodigy is well-reported and -written. We like the rich detail, the elegant descriptions, deft characterizations. What seems left out are more insights into why the 16-year-old, Sam Johnson, has such a hard time. Stabler … Read more

Two Jobs and a Sense of Hope

By Notable Narratives November 16, 2004

In this final, sad chapter of the series, a West African immigrant, Adama Camara, scrubs toilets and wipes tables for 16 hours a day. The world is a grimy, dreary, bone-tired place. There’s too much work for too little gain, … Read more

Dreaming Against the Odds

By Notable Narratives November 16, 2004

In this second installment of Hull’s series, you’ll find this small example of how even a newspaper article (the voice of which is usually straight and communitarian) can include irony: “As Saul and Nallely talk about which Starbucks puts the … Read more

The Exorcist in Love

By Notable Narratives November 16, 2004

The subject of this profile is not like most of us. Is she crazy? A hustler? Or does she know things we can’t? We need the writer to make sense of it all, to guide us through the tale with … Read more

The French Fry Connection

By Notable Narratives November 16, 2004

This series has global reach, an international cast of characters—and shows that, to paraphrase Tip O’Neil, “all economics is local.” Read seeks to explain the wide repercussions of the Asian financial crisis in the late 1990’s by following a load … Read more