Thursday, December 13, 2012

Esquire Features on Elon Musk & John Hickenlooper

There was excellent writing throughout the December '12 Esquire Americans of the Year issue and two profiles that struck me as particularly great were on John Hickenlooper and Elon Musk respectively.

"John Hickenlooper's Long, Hot Summer" is a relatively short piece on the Colorado governor and in it, Robert Sanchez portrays someone who's faced very difficult events and seems to do about as good of a job as possible. The writing by Sanchez feels almost quiet in it's portrayal and very fitting with much of the piece centered around Hickenlooper's actions after the Aurora movie theater shooting. Again, short piece, but pretty darn riveting.

The second profile that stood out to me was on Elon Musk, founder of both Space X and Tesla and who I've earlier this year written on and linked to profiles on him from Fast Company, Time and Businessweek. This latest piece done for Esquire was "Triumph of His Will" by Tom Junod and it's really well done writing on a fascinating individual. Junod starts off the profile with a great hook alluding to Musk's audaciousness and then in the piece shows the drive Musk has in looking forward, and often past what others want from him. The character trait comes out in writing on Musk from other magazines as well, but just a remarkable willingness to place huge bets.

Also in this issue of Esquire and related to Musk's goal of going to Mars was a solid Mike Sager profile of NASA Mars Curiosity rover engineer Tom Rivellini. The Sager piece isn't online at this point, but in it he makes reference to the NASA video "Seven Minutes of Terror" about the landing of Curiosity on Mars.