Random Family: On showing, telling, and showing up…

I’m working on a piece that takes place in the inner-city, and going back over Random Family, which I read almost a year ago. The book is chock-full of incredible reporting, and clean simple prose that make the breaking heart of the story burst clear-through. Too many scenes and snippets (and even profoundly good exposition) to recount, but I wanted to … Continue reading Random Family: On showing, telling, and showing up…

Big Books of Science Narrative: my reading list for 2016

I watched 88 episodes of Gilmore Girls in just the past two months, and read less than twelve books in all of 2015. I am confessing here because I think  the shame of putting these two facts, side-by-side, out into the world might actually finally jolt me into amending for them. Eighty-eight episodes of Gilmore Girls, less than … Continue reading Big Books of Science Narrative: my reading list for 2016

Oh Steinbeck…

I was in Nevada City, California earlier this summer  – in the Sierra Nevada foothills, not far from Lake Tahoe – reporting a piece for Pacific Standard. And on a day-off,  I happened into this quaint little bookstore run by this adorable elderly couple. Nevada City is an old mining town, with the architecture and kitschy tourist … Continue reading Oh Steinbeck…

David Foster Wallace: Peeking into the mind of a genius…

Photo credit: Gary Hannabarger / Corbis  Just finished reading Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, a book-length conversation between David Foster Wallace and David Lipsky, a journalist  who profiled Wallace for Rolling Stone during his Infinite Jest tour back in 1996. Wallace committed suicide in 2008, at the age of 46. The transcript of … Continue reading David Foster Wallace: Peeking into the mind of a genius…

25 Years Later: You are still here, “on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam”

Phil Plait (one of my favorite science bloggers) pointed out that yesterday marked the 25th Anniversary of this famous photograph. It’s a picture of Earth, taken by the Voyager 1 Spacecraft, from more than six billion kilometers away. It is the image that inspired this bit of brilliance from Carl Sagan: From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not … Continue reading 25 Years Later: You are still here, “on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam”