We’ve heard a lot about self-publishing new books. But what about self-republishing out-of-print books? Having some time and some available books, Jeff Hecht tested the process, and came to the conclusion it can work, but not for all books, and not in the formats used by e-book readers unless you have a clean digital copy. This article shares what he's learned the hard way to save you time and trouble.
Most American science journalists and others who help in shuttling information and analysis from the realm of science to the public in plain English surely have heard at least vaguely about something called the World Conference of Science Journalists (WCSJ). It is coming soon to the USA for the first time. In less than two years, our kind will be in downtown San Francisco for a self-improvement confab among a global bevy of science journalists and their like. Key activities include workshops, mad gossip in the hallways, tours, and lectures from experts on hot science on the horizon.
Have you ever had trouble getting access to information or sources you need for a story? To help address the problem, the recently reconstituted Information Access Committee has created a database in which NASW members can share experiences trying to gain hard-to-obtain information or speak to scientists to whom access is restricted by institutional media policies.
The Why Files: The Science Behind the News, one of the oldest popular science websites, ceased publication on Jan. 21, roughly the 20th anniversary of its birth as an experiment in the nascent technology once called the World Wide Web. The cause of death was a university-wide belt tightening at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Over recent years, more and more research institutions seem to be adopting a corporate marketing approach to their communications. You can recognize these marketers by their use of such buzzwords as branding, messaging, market penetration, and cost-benefit analysis. It’s an approach that risks compromising research communications, and more broadly a research institution’s missions to create and disseminate knowledge. But corporate marketing is by definition shallow marketing. By aiming to sell the institution as a branded product, it fails to serve the intellectually rich marketplace of ideas in which researchers operate.
The federal government has assembled a fast-track committee to encourage research into microorganisms, reflecting the recognition of their increasingly important role in human health and the Earth’s climate. Jo Handelsman, Ph.D., a Yale microbiologist and current associate director for science to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), described the initiative during her Patrusky Lecture at this year’s New Horizons in Science briefing.
The International Science Writers Association (ISWA), arguably the world’s oldest international organization of science journalists, has a new roster of officers as of Sept. 1. James Cornell has retired from the office of president and was succeeded by Pallava Bagla, author, columnist, Science correspondent, and science editor for New Delhi Television, India.
Most NASW members and other freelancers are “cash basis” taxpayers. That’s IRS jargon for, among others, writers who have to declare advances and royalties for books and payments for articles in the year that they actually receive them. Similarly, the IRS generally forbids freelancers from deducting business expenses and other allowable outlays until the year that they actually pay them.