Lorraine Boissoneault

Profile Photo

Lorraine is a journalist and fiction writer. Previously a staff writer for Smithsonian Magazine, she covers history, archaeology, evolution, and the weird world. She has received fellowships from the Institute for Journalism and Natural Resources and the National Tropical Botanical Garden. Lorraine's first narrative nonfiction book, The Last Voyageurs, (Pegasus Books/April 2016) was a finalist for the Chicago Book of the Year award. Her fiction has appeared in The Massachusetts Review and Literary Laundry. She's currently at work on two novels about friendship and belonging.


Cover Photo: A promotional still from the animated Studio Ghibli film "Howl's Moving Castle." The still depicts a field in front of snow-capped mountains, with a large, ramshackle house on legs perched near the edge of the frame. In the field are small houses and a tiny shepherd herding a flock of sheep.
Hayao Miyazaki’s Characters Help Me Grieve My Chronic Illness

“Howl’s Moving Castle” and “The Legend of Korra” are about protagonists living with magic and fighting for the fate of the world. To me, they’re also metaphors for dynamic disability.

Cover Photo: A photo of an outdoor exercise class, shot form above. A group of people stand on a grassy rectangle and perform a coordinated move, surrounded by a perimeter of chairs.
Drafting a Personal Essay Is Like Stumbling Through a Dance

You can study all you want, but it’s only in the act of doing that you learn what’s right and what isn’t.

Cover Photo: A detail of a painting of a woman holding a sword against her shoulder and turning her head to the right of the frame. From her neck bulges a large goiter. The background of the painting is dark; to her right is another woman in a headscarf.
Finding a Face for My Invisible Illness

I could only acknowledge my thyroid condition from sly, sideways angles—a hobbit stealing from a sleeping dragon’s hoard.

Cover Photo: A photograph of a five-panel stained glass window in a church.  In front of the window is an elaborate wooden platform with a single glowing light.
Acceptable Forms of Agony

It was during my third year of teaching the saints at Holy Trinity that the burning began.