On March 12, the National Book Critics Circle awarded the late Ellen Willis the top prize in its criticism category for The Essential Ellen Willis, a collection of over 40 years' worth of Willis's writing. Willis, who served as the first-ever pop critic for the New Yorker in the early Sixties, died of lung cancer at the age of 64 in 2006. She began writing for the Village Voice in the early Seventies, and became a staff writer here in 1979, where she remained as a writer and senior editor for the next decade.
On Friday, August 3, the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association named me NLGJA Journalist of the Year 2012. The above video shows CNN's Miguel Marquez presenting the award to me in Las Vegas before I addressed NLGJA's annual gala with my acceptance speech, "Access: Use It to Give Voice to the Voiceless (and Hell to the Powerful)." Below are my prepared remarks, which do vary a bit from how I actually delivered them.
I want to first say what an honor it is to appear right after Chris Geidner, my homo journo brother from another mother. We're exactly the same age - ok, he's a month, to the day, younger than me - and I've been blessed to repeatedly cross paths with him on this amazing journey we've both been on during the past couple of years. Although I admire Chris greatly for the quality of his work, I admire him even more for wearing an open heart of gratitude on his sleeve in appreciation of the privilege we all have in doing this work. And it is a privilege; it's a gift. He understands how blessed each one of us in this room is who gets to earn their bread as a journalist.
Congratulations on your well deserved recognition.
Now, as for the rest of you, my fellow homosexual journalists: I'd like to talk to you tonight about the word access. I've been thinking about that word a lot lately, and I'll start with a kind of coming out story, regarding something I haven't admitted publicly before.
The Voice's Steven Thrasher has just been named the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association journalist of the year. Chris Geidner -- formerly of Metro Weekly, now of BuzzFeed, and frequent Voice video guest -- won NLGJA's other annual award, the Sarah Pettit Memorial Award for Excellence in LGBT Media.
Thrasher, who has been at this paper since 2009, won the accolade for work that has appeared in the Voice, New York Times, and Out. The Voice stories recognized by NLGJA include "Diaz Family Values" -- which details Rubén Díaz Sr.'s bomb-lobbing against gay rights, his borough president son, and his lesbian granddaughter -- and "Maybe I do And Maybe I Don't" -- which explains some gays' decision not to marry.
Tonight, we'll be covering the 84th Annual Academy Awards, live from a computer. Stay here on Runnin' Scared for exclusive insight and commentary from a Hollywood insider who has seen THREE movies this year (not including a two-part episode of The Mentalist that looked pretty big-budget). Who's going to win? Who's going to get snubbed? Who's going to die in the middle of the ceremony and get frantically edited into the 'In Memoriam' segment? Stay tuned to find out!
Three women received the Nobel Peace Prize today at a ceremony in Oslo. Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, social worker Leymah Gbowee, and Yemeni journalist and activist Tawakkul Karman were all "chosen for their non-violent struggle against injustice, sexual violence and repression." Sirleaf "became Africa's first democratically-elected female president in 2006," Gbowee "led a women's movement that protested the use of rape and child soldiers in Liberia's civil war," and Karman "founded the rights group Women Journalists without Chains." The three will each receive $1.5 million. [CNN]
It took a lot of imagination and thinking-outside-the-box for the Academy to come up with this year's Oscar host after Eddie Murphy said no thanks: it's Billy Crystal, who has hosted the Oscars approximately 40 times already. The number is actually eight, but still.
This is a safe choice, and not necessarily a bad one, but it does mean one thing: the Muppets will almost surely not be hosting the next Academy Awards.
Last night, @NickGreene and I attended the Shorty Awards, the official awards ceremony for Twitter and social media, a/k/a, "the Oscars of Twitter" and all that that implies. Here is our story.
Jen: HEY, so, the Shorty Awards was surprisingly enjoyable last night, don't you think? Nicholas: It was. Last night was the most fun I've had this year at an awards show dedicated to microblogging. Who won? Did we?
Hosni Mubarak's resignation as President of Egypt today has left an immense vacuum in world politics. Yes, this means that he is no longer 20th on Parade Magazine's List of the World's Worst Dictators. Who will slide into his now-vacant slot? We've got the scoop! SPOILER ALERT: Do not click "more" if you don't want to find out the juicy gossip.
Last night's Golden Globes were...weird. They were sad, they were awkward, they were kind of bleak and sinister, like a cocktail party gone on way too long, till everyone's smiles are forced and dresses rumpled. The Social Network did well, winning four awards, as did Glee, which took home three. What really mattered, though, was not the awards themselves, but Ricky Gervais' heroically churlish showing as host. Some high- and lowlights after the jump.
Today, Anne Hathaway and James Franco were named the hosts of this year's Academy Awards. The Daily News reports that Bruce Cohen and Don Mischer (the producers of the Oscars) said, "James Franco and Anne Hathaway personify the next generation of Hollywood icons -- fresh, exciting, and multi-talented." They also personify a combined age of 60. Here are 5 pairs that we'd choose over FrancAway.