Articles by Martha Sherrill

My first job in publishing was fashion assistant at The Washington Post, working for legendary fashion editor Nina Hyde. She was something else — a total 100% pro. Watching Nina report and write a story taught me valuable things that I am still discovering today. And I loved her. After nearly 3 years as her sidekick, I was given a paid summer internship in general assignment feature writing in the Style section, then hired to cover parties, usually at night, usually in a cocktail dress. (The editor of Style, Mary Hadar, said: “I don’t care if you’re the next Updike, what I need is a party reporter.”)  I found it fascinating and demeaning. After a year, I ascended to staff writer covering arts and politics.

Ben Bradlee, the executive editor of the newspaper, was a guiding light, a sidelines kibbitzer and great male muse. He had high standards and was an inspiration — and pushed us all to be better. Over time I did a bit of everything:  profiles, investigative stories, mood essays, scene pieces, group studies, and quick “day hits” about washed up movie stars. One summer, I covered the Olympics. Another summer, I was flown to Morocco in a chartered jet to write about Malcolm Forbes 70th birthday party in Tangiers.

Eventually, I grew restless — as writers do — and wanted to work on longer, more serious stories. I became a contributing editor at Esquire.

I have always been more interested in human psychology and behavior than news.

You can find posts about my most recent work on the News page of this site. Below is a list of profiles I’ve written over the years and a few links to them.


“My Father, The Bachelor” – Esquire, June 1999.
“The Doughnut that Saved Las Vegas” – Esquire, September 1998
Rudy Giuliani – “Rudy Giuliani is a Colossal Asshole”- Esquire, October 1997
Dream Girl – “The Allegra Coleman Nobody Knows”- Esquire, November 1996 (cover story, pictured above)
Steve Martin - “Mr. Lonelyhearts”- Esquire, April 1996 (cover story, pictured above)
Sen. Robert Kerrey – “Grave Doubts”- Esquire, January 1996
Jim Carrey – “Jim Carrey Feels No Pain”- Esquire, December 1995
Andre Agassi – “Educating Andre” – Esquire, May 1995
Don Imus – “The King of I”- Esquire, October 1994

Vanity Fair
“San Simeon’s Child” – Vanity Fair, April 1995.  (Collected in Vanity Fair ’s Hollyood, Viking Studio, 2000)

The New York Times
Leslie Blodgett -  “Move Over, Estee Lauder” - June 12, 2011
Bill Ford – “The Buddha Of Detroit  - Nov 26, 2000

Conde Nast Traveler
Hokkaido - “A Japanese Winter’s Tale” –  July 2009
Sailing Cape Cod - “Briny Flight to Summer” - August 2010

The Washington Post (click for archives)

Ben Bradlee Appreciation, “Hey, Tiger,” October 21, 2014

Senators Olympia Snowe + Susan Collins, “The Sisters of Maine,”  May 5, 2011

Tammy Faye Baker, November 3, 1996

John Kennedy Jr.,  September 7, 1995
Jodie Foster, December 25, 1994
Bernardo Bertolucci, May 22, 1994
Jack LaLanne, March 24, 1994
Robert DeNiro, October 13, 1993
Clint Eastwood, July 11, 1993
Peter O’Toole, April 24, 1993
The Education of Hillary Clinton, three part series, Jan 11 – 13, 1993
Charles Barkley, July 29, 1992
Richard Ben Cramer, July 6, 1992
Lena Wertmuller, May 3, 1992
Angelica Huston, November 17, 1991
Jean-Claude Van Damme, August 11, 1991
Sonny Bono, July 19, 1991
Ali MacGraw, June 18, 1991
Madonna, May 14, 1991
Robin Givens, May 11, 1991
Julia Phillips, April 9, 1991
Dyan Cannon, February 8, 1991
Agnes de Mille, October 14, 1990
Whit Stillman, September 14, 1990
Robert Goulet, August 28, 1990
Hanif Kurieshi, July 24, 1990
Gerald Depardieu,  April 11, 1990
Steven Soderbergh, Aug 11, 1989
Geena Davis, May 12, 1989
Errol Morris, Jan 3, 1989
Placido Domingo, Nov 3, 1988
Pauline Trigere, Oct 29, 1988
Grace Mirabella, July 25, 1988

Rachel Welch – Allure, May 1993
Jeanne Moreau – Allure, December 1993


Bob Goulet and I in 1990. (He grabbed my hands and made me hug him from behind.)


Interviewing Charlton Heston. (He tended to wax on, Moses-like, and was wearing a toupee, but my lifelong crush on him was only slightly diminished.)

Below, here’s a page from my Esquire essay, “My Father, The Bachelor”