Author

Skip Hollandsworth

Skip Hollandsworth's Profile Photo

Skip Hollandsworth is a staff writer at Texas Monthly, specializing in long-form narratives. He grew up in Wichita Falls, Texas, attended TCU in Fort Worth, and after graduation worked as a reporter and columnist for newspapers in Dallas. He also worked as a television producer and documentary filmmaker.

In 1989, Hollandsworth joined Texas Monthly, where he has received several journalism awards, including a National Headliner Award, the national John Hancock Award for Excellence in Business and Financial Journalism, the City and Regional Magazine Association gold award for feature writing, and the Texas Institute of Letters O. Henry Award for magazine writing. He has been a finalist four times for a National Magazine Award, the magazine industry’s equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize, and in 2010 he won the National Magazine Award in feature writing for “Still Life,” his story about a young man who, after suffering a crippling football injury in high school, spent the next 33 years in his bedroom, unable to move. The comic crime movie Bernie, which Hollandsworth cowrote with director Richard Linklater, was released in May 2012. It's based on his 1998 story "Midnight in the Garden of East Texas." His book, The Midnight Assassin, a true crime historical thriller, was published in April 2016 and became a New York Times best-seller.

Feature |
January 20, 2013

The Valley of The Shadow Of Death

Did Kari Baker, despondent over her daughter’s passing, commit suicide? Or was she killed by her husband, Matt, a Baptist preacher in Waco and an alleged sexual predator? He says he didn’t do it, but her family insists otherwise—and they say they’ll keep after him until justice is done.

Feature |
January 20, 2013

“You Don’t Want to Know What We Do After Dark”

The young, tattooed men who are members of the Southwest Cholos, La Primera, La Tercera Crips, Somos Pocos Pero Locos, Mara Salvatrucha, and other Houston gangs are vicious career criminals who regularly rob innocent people in some of the city’s most dangerous neighborhoods. They steal cars and break into businesses.

Texas History |
January 20, 2013

O Sister, Where Art Thou?

History makes no mention of what was one of the most popular all-female country acts ever. Yet the story of the Goree Girls-inmates who banded together in the forties at Texas' sole penitentiary for women—is worth a listen.

Music |
January 20, 2013

Blue Notes

Goree prison unit inmate Hattie Ellis had a short-lived recording career, but her music made a lasting impression.

Feature |
January 20, 2013

Bringing Down the Dogmen

The bust that nabbed Houston’s top dogfighters was the work of two gutsy undercover cops who knew that the only way to infiltrate this secret world was to become dogfighters themselves.

Web Exclusive |
January 20, 2013

Fight Club

Without the cooperation of Texas law enforcement, the dogfighting subculture will continue to thrive.

Feature |
January 20, 2013

Hi, Society!

How did a girl from Harlingen become Houston's hostess with the mostest? Sweetie, Becca Cason Thrash has always been the life of the party.

Politics & Policy |
January 20, 2013

Girl Gone Mild

After spending her adolescence largely out of view (except for a few scrapes with restaurant and bar employees), presidential spawn Jenna Bush is emerging as a public person in her own right. But her return to private life can’t come soon enough.

Books |
January 20, 2013

The Woman On Top

So what if Sandra Brown’s novels have wildly implausible plot twists, banal endings, over-the- top characters, and other literary no-no’s. She’s published nearly 70 of them since 1981, and 55 have gone on to be best-sellers. We’re sure the sex scenes have nothing to do with it.

Sports |
January 20, 2013

Still Life

A violent tackle in a high school football game paralyzed John McClamrock for life. His mother made sure it was a life worth living.

Sports |
January 20, 2013

Honor Thy Father

In suburban Fort Worth the frail psyche of a football prodigy collided with the crazed ambition of his dad, who himself had been a high school football star way back when. The consequences were deadly.

Feature |
January 20, 2013

Angel of Death

What was it, exactly, that caused Vickie Dawn Jackson, a sweet, soft-spoken nurse at Nocona General Hospital, to become one of the most prolific serial killers in Texas history?

Feature |
December 1, 2012

The Unsinkable Lisa Blue

Her husband, Fred Baron, helped bankroll John Edwards's presidential campaign, only to die of cancer amid the most sordid political scandal in recent history. But before long, Dallas's newest rainmaker had emerged from the wreckage—with every hair in place.

Letter From Joshua |
May 31, 2011

Playground Rules

The suicides of four Texas teens who were brutally bullied have prompted cries for new legislation. But one lawyer has a different plan: Sue the school districts.

Feature |
February 1, 2010

193

That’s the number of times Harris County housewife Susan Wright stabbed her husband in a brutal 2003 murder that riveted the nation and landed her in prison for 25 years. But should the butcher of the burbs be freed?

Feature |
December 1, 2009

Perversion of Justice

Cathy McBroom loved working as a case manager for Samuel Kent, Galveston’s brilliant, charismatic, all-powerful federal district judge. Then he started attacking her.

Letter From Refugio |
June 30, 2009

Sleeping Booty

Has an out-of-work Los Angeles musician discovered a sunken Spanish treasure worth hundreds of millions of dollars in a lake near Refugio? Maybe!

Feature |
May 31, 2009

Parental Paradise

Location: Lakeway Resort and Spa, outside Austin What You’ll Need: Bathing suit, trashy magazines Don’t get me wrong: My wife and I are happy to take the Beloved One (our daughter) around the state so she can see things. Still, there are times when our idea of

Web Exclusive |
May 31, 2009

X Marks the Spot

Texas is full of buried booty—or, to be a bit more accurate, full of stories about buried booty that no one has been able to find. Here are six of the supposedly greatest Texas treasures still out there. May the hunters strike gold.

Web Exclusive |
April 30, 2009

The Lost Boys

Can a former member of a vicious Houston gang leave crime behind and build a new life for himself?

Sports |
February 1, 2009

She Got Gamed?

On January 13, the girls’ basketball team for the Covenant School of Dallas, an elite private Christian school in upscale North Dallas, demolished its opponents from the Dallas Academy, a lesser known East Dallas school that focuses on students who face a variety of learning problems.

Feature |
December 1, 2008

The Fugitive

Friends and family knew Deborah Murphey as a mild-mannered nurse and a loving wife and mother. Then a U.S. marshal knocked on her door.

Feature |
September 1, 2008

There Will Be Boone

Our most iconic oil and gas man, lately a water marauder and now a celebrated windcatter, has saved himself a couple of times in his eighty glorious years. Who’s to say he can’t save America?

Feature |
July 31, 2008

The Killing Field

Before they clubbed two deer to death in their tiny West Texas town, the four high school football stars were treated like royalty. Afterward, when news of their exploits hit the Internet, they were celebrities of a very different sort.

Letter from Stephenville |
March 31, 2008

The Searcher

When a UFO streaks across our skies— c’mon, the truth is out there!—Ken Cherry gets to work.

Web Exclusive |
October 31, 2007

Me and Tommy Lee

No Country for Old Men is Tommy Lee Jones’s new movie. I don’t think he’ll be granting me an interview anytime soon.

Feature |
April 30, 2006

The Last Rustler

If he was asked what he did for a living, Roddy Dean Pippin would smile and say something about the cattle business. But he didn’t exactly buy and sell cows. He stole them. And right up until he was caught, he was as good as any such thief had ever

Feature |
March 1, 2006

Casualty Of War

A real-life G.I. Joe, Master Sergeant James Coons hardly seemed like a candidate for post-traumatic stress disorder. But when his demons got the best of him, there was nothing anyone could do—not that anyone really tried.

Reporter |
December 1, 2005

Y’all Come Back

Homecoming in the town of Spur means football, the crowning of a queen, parades, pep rallies, barbecue, a bonfire, and so much more.

Feature |
June 30, 2005

Angie Barrett Does Not Use Butt Cream

She shares that curious fact with you for posterior’s— er, posterity’s sake. What you really need to know about the shopgirl turned shoplifter is that her rehabilitation is continuing apace atop Dallas’ social heap. And thanks to a new reality show about her life, there’s no end in sight.