Writer, journalist, author, teacher
She wasn’t born in Boston, but the day Stephanie Schorow moved here in 1989, she knew she had come home. Stephanie is the author of six books on Boston, including Drinking Boston: A History of the City and Its Spirits, published by Union Park Press in 2012, and, with co-author Beverly Ford, The Boston Mob Guide: Hit Men, Hoodlums & Hideouts, published in December 2011, by the History Press. She has also written books on the Boston Harbor Islands, Boston's fire history, the tragic Cocoanut Grove nightclub fire and the infamous Brink's robbery. These books take a grassroots, people's history view of Boston. She has talked to cops and robbers, bartenders and barristers. She has spent hours in dusty archives and days camping on isolated islands within sight of Boston. For more on her books, see Works.
A seasoned reporter, she works as freelance writer for a host of publications and institutions, including The Boston Globe, the Harvard Gazette, and many others. Stephanie has a degree in journalism from Northwestern University and a master’s degree in Latin America studies from New York University. She worked at newspapers around the country until moving to Boston to work for the Associated Press in 1989. She briefly worked for the TAB newspapers before making the switch to Wingo Way. For 12 years, she was a lifestyles editor and writer at the Boston Herald, where she supervised freelance writers, wrote features and contributed a weekly technology column. Today she continues to freelance; among her regular features are reviews restaurants for the Globe's North section and new CDs reviews for the Chicago Blues Guide. Her jobs have also included being assistant director of public relations and editorial services at Bunker Hill Community College.
For links to stories, see Recent Articles link on the lower right.
Stephanie has put her experience to work in the classroom She teaches feature writing for the Digital Journalism certificate program at Emerson College. She has taught a variety of writing classes at the Cambridge Center for Adult Education, including breaking into freelance writing, regional history writing and how to kickstart that book you always wanted to write.
Stephanie frequently speaks at libraries, community centers, historical societies and assisted living units in the Greater Boston area, including appearances at the Old South Meeting House, the Brookline and Arlington adult education centers, Massachusetts Superior Court. She was recently featured in a segment on the Brink's robbery for "Mysteries at the Museum," on the Travel Channel and will appear in an upcoming documentary on Boston's infamous Symphony Road arson case, "Burning Greed." She has appeared as an expert in documentaries about fire including "Damrell's Fire," first broadcast in 2006, a look at the Great Boston Fire of 1872; and in a segment on the Cocoanut Grove fire for the "Modern Marvels" series on the History Channel broadcast in 2004.
For information on where Stephanie will speak next, see Events.
Stephanie is vice president of the board of the Boston Fire Historical Society, an organization dedicated to preserving Boston's fire history. She also serves on the board of the Volunteers and Friends of the Boston Harbor Islands, an advocacy and volunteer group
A clay artist working at the Mudflat Studio in Somerville, she has taught pottery at the Cambridge Center for Adult Education and sells her work through the Mudflat Gallery in Porter Square and at bi-annual Mudflat sales.
Special announcement from Stephanie Schorow:
On January 21, I begin a new job as program director of the Master of Arts in Professional Writing (MAPW) program at Regis College in Weston, Mass. I will be helping to launch this new program as well as teaching writing classes. This is a major step for me, professionally and personally. I will draw from all my experience – reporting, editing, freelancing, public relations, book writing, photography, teaching, lecturing, blogging – to craft a master’s degree program that aims for a moving target: the role of today’s “professional writer.”
Since I started working for newspapers in the last century, the media world has been utterly transformed. Yet I believe there is still a demand for trained, professional, experienced writers; this program will aim to encourage those with the unstoppable urge to write, help them hone their skills, and direct them to (paying) venues to satisfy that urge. The Regis MAPW program is not journalism, nor creative writing, nor public relations nor social media training but a combination of those fields, plus more. The program will stay in tune with current market demands and future possibilities.
I will be calling upon my colleagues and friends in the news/writing business for suggestions, advice, warnings, and bad jokes about what they observe in the media landscape. All feedback will be welcome.
Note: Please be sure to click on the links in the Works section for more content on the subjects and issues covered by my books.
If you're looking for a dynamic speaker for your organization, group, library or club, please read THIS.
Drinking Boston: A historical pub crawl through the taverns, speakeasies and nightclubs of Boston.
From the drama of the "Blue Blazer" to the mystery of the "Ward 8," Stephanie serves up a cocktail of pop culture, history and anecdotes. Couple this with dinner and drinks and you'll have event that will have people talking. The talk covers Boston's drinking history, beginning in the Colonial period and continuing through Prohibition and into Boston's craft cocktail scene.
The Tragedy of the Cocoanut Grove Fire
This 1942 nightclub fire killed nearly 500 people and burned through the heart of Boston. Stephanie recounts the events that led to the fire, its investigation and its enduring mysteries. New information continues to come forward and Stephanie brings the latest to life. She also leaves time for people to share their stories of the Grove, making for a moving, interactive event.
The Boston Mob Guide: Hit Men, Hoodlums and Hideouts
With partner-in-crime Beverly Ford, Stephanie takes a walk on Boston's wild side with the bady boys of the Hub. The gals trace the history of organized crime in Boston from its roots in the 1910s and 1920s to the latest on Whitey Bulger and his convictions. With compassion for victims as well as intriguing details on the mobsters, Bev and Stephanie paint an indelible portait of the murder and mayhem.
Fire! Boston Burning
Stephanie looks at the fires that have shaped Boston's history from the Colonial period to the arson rings of the 1970s and 1980s.
The Crime of the Century: The Brink's Job
In January of 1950, a band of misfit thieves broke into the Brink's armored car headquarters in Boston's North End and pulled off the largest robbery in U.S. history. The Crime of the Century went unsolved for six years and police only cracked the case when one of the robbers turned stool pigeon. Much of the money was never recovered. Stephanie uses historical images, FBI evidence, movie clips and humor to bring the story of the Brink's heist to life.
Girls Night Out -- 1891 Style
In July of 1891, four intrepid woman spent 10 days sojourning on Great Brewster Island in Boston Harbor. One kept a diary which provides a fascinating look into the lives of women in the 1890s as well as the history -- flora, fauna and bovine -- of the Harbor Islands. Stephanie plays detective, tracking elusive details from the illustrated diary and invites the audiences to be sleuths along with her.
To see videos of various presentations, go to the Works section of this Web site and click on one of the books listed. To schedule a lecture, please email me at sschorow (at) comcast (dot) net
All Media All the Time
Some interesting links. For more links, please go to the Works section of this site.
Can you drink cocktails at 9:30 a.m.?
And on Fox25 -- a special guest.
Happy Hours? We don't need no stinkin' happy hours.
ABC News on Boston's ban on half-price drinks.
Farewell to the Herald building on Harrison Avenue
The end of an era.
Thursty Boston on Drinking Boston
Luke O'Neil's interview with Stephanie for the Metro
Radio Boston Interviews Schorow at Foley's
I'm interviewed by Radio Boston at one of my favorite drinking holes.
The Brinks -- AGAIN
A group of Belmont high school students interviewed me for a project on the Brink's heist. They put together this excellent video. And they all got A's.