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John Ourand: Why I Joined Puck

In many ways, my arrival at Puck represents the full circle of my career.
In many ways, my arrival at Puck represents the full circle of my career. Photo: James Flores/Getty Images
John Ourand
February 1, 2024

I can’t tell you how excited I am to join Puck. I have been an avid reader from the beginning, ever since Matt Belloni launched his must-read email What I’m Hearing in the spring of 2021, before the company had even announced its name or gone to market. Of course, I was hooked by the sheer amount of news Matt broke, and I personally learned a lot from his well-reported analysis. But what really grabbed me was the way he wrote—with an authoritative yet conversational tone that transported me into all the boardrooms in Hollywood, on the lots, and inside the agencies.

My background is a little different: I’m a classically trained journalist who grew up on inverted pyramids, AP Style, and other well-worn formats and principles. Belloni’s email had none of that. In fact, all the Puck private emails eschewed those conventions. They were written like elegant and intimate—and incredibly informative and dishy—dispatches, composed by true insiders. Notably, Puck relied on its own format innovation: an engaging style that resonates with today’s readers, which is exactly how newsletters should be written—as personal letters to subscribers, brimming with news, analysis, gossip, etcetera. (Of note: I may be giving up AP Style, but I will never give up the em dash.)