About

I’m a writer, audio producer, editor, and teacher living in Western Massachusetts.

I’m currently writing a book about the world of blindness (and figuring out my place in it) for Penguin Press.

Most recently I wrote a web feature for the New Yorker about Protactile—a way of communicating through touch, a political movement for DeafBlind autonomy, and (some argue) a new language in a new modality—that’s radically transforming the lives of DeafBlind people across the U.S.

I wrote about the complexities of acting blind on TV (and in my own life) for the New York Times Magazine. My writing has also appeared in the New York Review Daily, McSweeney’s Quarterly, the San Francisco Chronicle, BOMB magazine, the catalog for the 2014 Whitney Biennial, and elsewhere.

I’ve produced audio for a range of entities, including a story about disabled astronauts for Radiolab, and a story about reading technologies for the blind for 99 Percent Invisible.

From 2013–2019, I hosted and produced the Organist, an arts-and-culture podcast, for KCRW.

I’ve taught nonfiction writing, radio, and “digital storytelling” (?) at Smith College, UMass-Amherst, and the University of Missouri.

I’ve been an editor at the Believer since 2003, and I’ve edited books for McSweeney’s and Chronicle Books.

I have an email newsletter that I have never used to send anyone an email, ever; you can subscribe and fail to receive any emails from me by going here.

My email address is aleland at gmail dot com.