Born in New York City, Maitland McDonagh misspent her youth prowling Times Square grind houses in search of horror, exploitation and mondo movies, and has been writing about them ever since. She has appeared in documentaries ranging from Sky Television's "Illuminations" series (2000) to "100 Scariest Movie Moments" (2004). As the senior movies editor of TVGuide.com, a position she held for 13 years, reviewed hundreds of new releases every year and contributed weekly columns to both the online and print magazines.
Maitland earned an MFA in Film History/Theory/Criticism from Columbia University, has taught film at the City University of New York and is the author of Broken Mirrors/Broken Minds: The Dark Dreams of Dario Argento (1990, Sun Tavern Fields), Filmmaking on the Fringe: The Good, the Bad and the Deviant Directors (1995, Citadel Press), The 50 Most Erotic Films of All Time and Movie Lust: Recommended Viewing for Every Mood, Moment and Reason (Sasquatch Books). She has contributed essays to Zombie (Stray Cat Publishing, 1999), The Time Out Book of New York Walks (Penguin, 2000), Fantasy Females (Stray Cat Publishing, 2001) and The Last Great American Picture Show: New Hollywood 1967-1976 (Amsterdam University Press, 2004), I Love TV () and Exile Cinema (). She has written for dozens of publications in the United States and Europe, ranging from Film Comment and Dance Now to Fangoria.