I STARTED MY CAREER in JOURNALISM

There is a parallel timeline where I went to Columbia’s School of Journalism instead of Columbia’s School of the Arts, but in that timeline I am much more tired.

I grew up wanting to work in news magazines, meaning, for me, World News Tonight. Peter Jennings and Christiane Amanpour were my idols. But by the time I was actually starting my career, the 24-hour news cycle had taken over. I learned pretty quick that pacing doesn’t suit me. I don’t think it suits most people, or the news for that matter, but that’s another conversation.

I worked at ABC News (with stints for World News Tonight and Good Morning America), The Associated Press and NY1, notably where I learned to shoot and edit, which eventually brought me to film and TV. I shot the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade from a cherry picker. I worked the overnight shift at every journalism job I ever had, once for almost a year. I prowled the city in a stick-shift armed with a Beta cam, a Nextel and a paper map. I covered political conventions (RNC 2004) and protests, five alarm fires and firemen calendar benefits. Christian Louboutin and I smacked each others butts! I was one of the first people to find out that Dick Cheney had shot someone in the face while hunting. Every sobering Thursday for a year I compiled the names, ages and companies of the U.S. military dead in Iraq and Afghanistan for publication.

Then I went to film school.