Began her career as a writer/editor for the Washington Monthly and was a staff writer at the New Yorker for 20 years. In 1996, she authored Architect of Desire: Beauty and Danger in the Stanford White Family, published by Dial Press. In recent years, her articles have appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Architectural Record, Architectural Digest, New Yorker, and Wilson Quarterly. She has taught writing and led master classes at Columbia School of the Arts, Wesleyan University, The New School, George Mason University, George Washington University, and Goucher College, and has co-taught a seminar on Trials in Literature at Georgetown University Law Center and Fordham Law School. She recently received an Anthony Lukas Award to write a book about the decentralization of the American landscape (to be published by Dial Press).