We need your great ideas now for next year's World Conference of Science Journalists. The World Conference of Science Journalists 2017 program committee invites — and encourages — everyone interested to submit a proposal for a panel or a plenary at the WCSJ2017. We're looking for session ideas in the areas of professional development (techniques and skill-building), professional and scientific issues, and international science.
Since its inception in 2010, more than $400,000 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.
On October 29 NASW members will vote on a proposed amendment to the NASW constitution that would change the qualifications for the positions of president, vice-president, secretary, and treasurer. A lot of discussion has been prompted by this amendment, and we'd like to give the ongoing conversation a home on the NASW web site so as many people as possible, members and non-members alike, can engage in the discussion about issues that affect our community. Read more for background and to comment.
Welcome to the NASW Marketing and Publishing Resource. These articles aim to help NASW members take advantage of the new opportunities for marketing and publishing their articles and books, whether they self-publish or work with a commercial publisher.
The Words' Worth database is a place for NASW members to report their own experiences with freelancing clients and find valuable information from other members about what they did, what they charged, and how it went — information that can help you improve your business.
Irish journalist Brian Boyd complains about how the digital age of journalism is also becoming its confessional age, as writers grab attention with first-person stories of their secrets: "An author I know who writes unbelievably boring books that are nevertheless loved by the literary establishment told me recently that a leading UK newspaper would only interview him about his new book if he talked about his long-running and somewhat picaresque battle with alcoholism."
More than 240 college science classrooms have students working to improve the quality of the online encyclopedia Wikipedia, Rosanna Xia writes, citing examples from California universities whose students have reworked hundreds of entries: "Professors, once averse to Wikipedia, now see its potential. Midterm papers and literature reviews — usually read by only the instructor or perhaps a teaching assistant — can be turned into comprehensive, accurate Wikipedia entries."
David Trilling provides a walkthrough on corporate financial documents available through EDGAR, the federal Securities and Exchange Commission's repository of documentation on publicly traded companies: "They are a reliable source for news stories, and not just on the business beat. Understanding a company’s books helps you know which questions to ask about a company’s operations and business dealings, allowing you to look beyond the press releases."
Maria Popova has quotes from Pulitzer-winning novelist Jennifer Egan on her fear that fame will ruin her. Getting a Pulitzer, Egan said, "is exactly the opposite of the very private pleasure of writing. And it’s dangerous. Thinking that I’ll get this kind of love again, that getting it should be my goal, would lead me to creative decisions that would undermine me and my work. I’ve never sought that approval, which is all the more reason that I don’t want to start now."
News from several fronts in the treatment of prostate cancer is summarized by Tabitha M. Powledge, including a study suggesting that more aggressive treatment isn't necessarily better: "British scientists studied more than 1,600 men for 10 years. The men had been randomized into groups that had surgery or radiation or underwent only 'active monitoring.' Most of the men survived no matter which group they belonged to." Also, evidence of prostate cancer in ancient times.