Night Moves

              “I didn’t decide to write this book, it was already written,” says Jessica Hopper, a Chicago based music critic with a career encompassing over the last two decades, a time when she not only wrote for New York Magazine, Rolling Stone, Buzz Feed and Bookforum, was an editor at Pitchfork and Rookie and editorial director at MTV News and still managed to keep extensive notes about those times.

              “I was a very prodigious chronicler of my life,” says Hopper, who started writing when she was 15 and is the author of the recently released Night Moves, a book that curates scenes from her career as a writer in the music business.

              Though she didn’t have formal training at that time, her parents were both journalists and Hopper says her impetus was that you learn by doing.

              “If you wanted to be something, you just did it,” she says. “I didn’t know anything about music but what I liked and didn’t like. I wanted to be real. If it didn’t go to the heart, that wasn’t what I wanted for my writing. I work really hard and I’ve always worked really hard, that’s how I work, I keep my head down and just keep writing.”

              Describing Night Moves as being shots of memories and feeling, Hopper drew from diaries and remembrances of those times as well as her published works.

              “Some of the pieces in my book are ephemeral,” she says, adding that when she started reviewing her past journaling and published pieces there were parts that she didn’t remember at all. “There are definitely things that I was surprised to re-encounter in my young life.”

              For as long as she’s been in the business, Hopper says she doesn’t think of the big picture when she’s doing something.

              “I just do my best and put it out there.”


              What: Jessica Hopper has several Chicago book events.

              When & Where:

              Thursday, May 9 at 7 p.m., Wilmette Public Library, 1242 Wilmette Ave., Wilmette, IL. Sponsored by The Book Stall, 847-446-8880;

             Friday, May 10 at 7 p.m. Author Conversation with singer-songwriter and social activist Ani DiFranco & Jessica Hopper. Wilson Abbey, 935 W. Wilson Ave., Chicago, IL. Sponsored by Women & Children First, 773-769-9299;


Author: Jane Simon Ammeson

Jane Simon Ammeson is a freelance writer who specializes in travel, food and personalities. She writes frequently for The Times of Northwest Indiana, Mexico Connect, Long Weekends magazine, Edible Michiana, Lakeland Boating, Food Wine Travel magazine , Lee Publications, and the Herald Palladium where she writes a weekly food column. Her TouchScreenTravels include Indiana's Best. She also writes a weekly book review column for The Times of Northwest Indiana as well as food and travel, has authored 16 books including Lincoln Road Trip: The Back-road Guide to America's Favorite President, a winner of the Lowell Thomas Journalism Award in Travel Books, Third Place and also a Finalist for the 2019 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards in the Travel category. Her latest books are America's Femme Fatale: The Story of Serial Killer Belle Gunness and Classic Restaurants of Northwest Indiana. Her other books include How to Murder Your Wealthy Lovers and Get Away with It, A Jazz Age Murder in Northwest Indiana and Murders That Made Headlines: Crimes of Indiana, all historic true crime as well Hauntings of the Underground Railroad: Ghosts of the Midwest, Brown County, Indiana and East Chicago. Jane’s base camp is Stevensville, Michigan on the shores of Lake Michigan. Follow Jane at;;;, and on her travel and food blog and book blog:

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