About our subject
And now, 22 years after Jeff died at age 39, his contributions have been largely forgotten. “Dying Words” will restore his name and work to the annals of gay history and journalistic history.
About our project
For "Dying Words," we have assembled a team of highly accomplished journalists, producers, and designers. The project was initiated by Samuel G. Freedman, the author of seven acclaimed books, a professor at Columbia Journalism School, and a columnist for The New York Times.
Kerry Donahue directs the radio program at Columbia Journalism School and is an independent radio producer with more than two decades of experience. Her work's been heard on PRX, WNYC, WBGO, Audible, and Marketplace.
Ben Shapiro is an award-winning radio producer and documentary filmmaker. His projects have aired on many NPR programs, PBS, and the Sundance Channel, among others, and include a documentary film about photographer Gregory Crewdson.
Kristofer Ríos is a producer with Univision Documentaries and a visual journalist at Fusion.
Chris Blomquist is a visual communications professional with thirty years of experience providing graphic design and marketing support to educational and non-profit organizations such as Columbia University, the University of Minnesota, and Minnesota Public Radio.
Tim Harper, a longtime journalist, author and editorial/publishing consultant, is a professor and writing coach at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, where he is the founding editor of the CUNY Journalism Press, which will publish "Dying Words" in paperback and ebook later this year.
"Covering AIDS And Living It: A Reporter's Testimony," The New York Times, Dec. 20, 1992.
"Whatever Happened to AIDS?," The New York Times Magazine, Nov. 28, 1993.
"On the Book-Signing Circuit with Magic Johnson; Call Him Earvin: 'I Can't Be Magic'," The New York Times, Nov. 19, 1992.
Risks and challenges
Thus far, we've paid about $10,000 out of our own pockets to do the research for the documentary and book. Our largest expenses are still ahead of us, with the need to hire a sound editor, a consultant for radio distribution, and a publicist. We have continuing expenses for transcribing recorded interviews -- including some of Jeff Schmalz's original cassette tapes. We need to build a website and hold promotional events. We're looking at $25,000 or more in upcoming expenses. The risk and challenge is very basic: to be able to bring this vital work to fruition and to make sure that it reaches the largest possible audience.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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