“Find community.” – Holly Regan
On the first and third Monday of the month, NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ Journalists will be highlighting one of our members in the revival of our #MemberMonday series. We are excited to showcase our outstanding members, from the most established to the up-and-coming. To nominate someone who deserves recognition for their journalistic accomplishments go to https://bit.ly/nlgjammonday.
It’s #MemberMonday and as always, we are proud to showcase the work of our members!
This week’s #MemberMonday participant is 2022 Curve Award winner Holly Regan. Regan is a queer and nonbinary writer, editor, artist and journalist whose work explores the human experience at the intersection of underrepresented identities and altered states of consciousness.
The national office communications intern, Adriana Guth-Borowski, had a few questions for Holly Regan:
What outlet(s) do you work for?
“I have a regular column on Good Beer Hunting, Altered States, and frequently write features for them. I’m a freelancer, and have also written for Eater Seattle, Whetstone Magazine, Pellicle Magazine and the Burum Collective, among other outlets. I have a monthly newsletter, The Both-Between, on Substack.”
What made you want to become a journalist?
“I’ve always been fascinated by humans and the systems, substances, ceremonies, stories and art we create to make meaning and connect with one another and the greater web of life. Writing is also the medium in which I best express myself. I wanted to become a journalist in order to share stories of collective resonance from my own experience and the lives of others; increasingly, I’ve felt called to uplift the voices of other underrepresented people and bridge groups that don’t often interact to facilitate mutual understanding, particularly in the consciousness-altering communities.”
What is the weirdest thing you have eaten while working under a deadline?
“Do psychedelics count?”
What is your favorite story you have ever worked on?
“‘Psychedelic Pints: The Search for Oneness Through Beer and Other Drugs’ was both my favorite and most challenging story. What I thought would be a fairly straightforward piece comparing the experience of drinking alcohol with that of taking psychedelics turned into an exploration of psychedelic neuroscience, the origins of consciousness-altering and the search for the divine—and became a manifesto for my whole approach to journalism, as well as the foundation for what I hope will ultimately become a book.”
If you could give any piece of advice to a fresh-faced LGBTQ journalist, what would it be?
“Find community: people you can bounce ideas, pitches and stories off of who will give honest feedback; with whom you can talk through difficult writing and reporting experiences; and who can share your celebrations. Also, publications may seem progressive and still not want to publish queer-focused stories; find those that support you and your people.”
You were recently named a 2022 Curve Award Winner. What does receiving this award mean to you?
“It is the essence of community—so crucial to me after years of longing and searching. Without a background in journalism, I’ve built my professional network slowly and disparately, but I still know hardly any other LGBTQIA+ journalists and that shared experience is so important in a world that constantly tells us we are unworthy. I’ve had many experiences of loneliness, frustration and imposter syndrome since self-starting my journalism career, and receiving this award makes me feel seen, heard, supported and inspired—not to mention honored and humbled, especially since my colleagues from Good Beer Hunting nominated me without me knowing. I can’t wait to get started.”