Since its inception in 2010, more than $350,000 has been awarded by NASW's Idea Grants program for projects that benefit science writing and its practitioners. Read more to see a list of all the awardees and their exciting science writing projects.
Do you labor for hours over a piece of writing, only to be embarrassed when a spelling mistake or other error is discovered after it's published? Don't worry, writes Nick Stockton. It just means that your brain is working at a high level: "We can become blind to details because our brain is operating on instinct. By the time you proof read your own work, your brain already knows the destination. This explains why your readers are more likely to pick up on your errors."
The Henrietta Lacks author discusses a story she wrote in 2004 about a neighbor's pack of vicious dogs in midtown Manhattan and the city's refusal to intervene even after multiple attacks. She talks about finding stories in "moments that make me stop and go, Wait … what?! … The first and most meaningful example was when I was 16 and I said to my biology teacher, Wait, what do you mean there are cells that are still alive decades after the woman they came from died?"
The Knight Science Journalism Tracker's demise prompts Tabitha M. Powledge to argue that if something has an editor, it's not a blog, it's journalism: "With blogging, there’s nobody backstopping you, nobody catching your errors, nobody urging caution and double-checking – but also nobody wrecking your carefully wrought structure and POV and beautifully honed phraseology. It can be a form of high-wire work without a net." Also, Robin Williams — depressed? Or bipolar?
After 10,000 posts on science writing's hits and misses, the Knight Science Journalism Tracker will cease to be at the end of this year, the incoming and interim directors of MIT's Knight Science Journalism fellowships announced Thursday. Deborah Blum and Wade Roush write that they want "to clear some space for experimentation." Commenters on their post were unconvinced. More from trackers Faye Flam and Charlie Petit.
It’s vital that you assume greater responsibility for your financial future. Don’t rely exclusively on paid advisers. At the very least, become knowledgeable enough to raise good questions and evaluate answers when dealing with professionals. The informed client gets the best advice.
The winner of the 2014 Evert Clark/Seth Payne Award, an annual prize for young science journalists, is Azeen Ghorayshi. Ghorayshi received the award and its $1,000 prize for “Bio Hackers,” a story in the East Bay Express about the “small but growing community of hackers, tinkerers and off-hours science enthusiasts” who are genetically engineering organisms in their garages and basements; and “Choking to Death in Tehran,” a story in Newsweek about smog in Iran.
Frank Rose isn't buying the doom-and-gloom predictions that the decline of print means the death of journalism as we know it. In fact, he sees signs that it's doing quite nicely online: "For every fledgling enterprise like Circa, which generates slick digests of other people's journalism on the theory that that's what mobile readers want, you have formerly short-attention-span sites like BuzzFeed and Politico retooling themselves to offer serious, in-depth reporting."