AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:
Before Brandon Taylor became a writer, he was a biochemistry researcher, breeding microscopic worms in a lab.
BRANDON TAYLOR: I come from a very working-class background in rural Alabama. And so for me, going into science, even with my, you know, small graduate stipend, that was the most money anyone in my family had made.
CORNISH: But Taylor was also the only black queer man in his program doing a job that was already isolating by nature.