Science is Supposed to Welcome Dissension, Not Discourage It

posted by Richard, Jul 24, 2018


I’ve loved science ever since I was a little kid.

And not just science fiction, though I’m sure, like many budding scientists, it provided the initial shove. No, for me, it was Mr. Wizard’s World. It was Bill Nye the Science Guy. It was Carl Sagan.

When Cosmos released on VHS sometime in the mid-90s, I bought the set, lost them in a move, and subsequently bought them again. I still remember sitting in class fascinated the day we learned about different classifications of clouds, which might as well have been characters from Roman mythology as far as I was concerned. Ah, lovely Cirrus, stealthy Stratus, mighty Cumulonimbus

Yep, clouds. That’s one nerdy kid, right there.

Even my tenth-grade biology teacher, with his droning, insectile voice and interminable blackboard notes, could not dissuade my love of science. In college, the day I found out I could do so, I promptly changed my major from Philosophy to History and Philosophy of Science. Suddenly I was writing papers about Einstein, time travel paradoxes, and wormholes, pretty convinced I had discovered just about the coolest subject ever. When I turned in my final paper on the Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum physics, I was pretty certain I was setting the scientific world on its ear. (I wasn’t. But that’s a sad story for another day).

So, I find it a little more than disturbing lately, in medias both traditional and social, the concept of “science” being used as a bludgeon.

Science, we are told, is now the end of an argument, as in: “I’m right, because Science.”

This bothers me. A lot. Continue reading Science is Supposed to Welcome Dissension, Not Discourage It

I’m Not Left or Right or Center, or Any Other Damn Direction—And Here’s Why

I came across this wonderful Tweet from Michael Krieger the other day, and thought I’d share:

Amen. Couldn’t have said it better myself.

But I can certainly say more 🙂 Continue reading I’m Not Left or Right or Center, or Any Other Damn Direction—And Here’s Why

The Crosstown Kid… No Longer Homeless!

Way back in Feb 2015 I had the thrill of publishing one of my longer stories, The Crosstown Kid. There it was, on Amazon, complete with professional artwork and a for-real ISBN number and everything. See me beaming.

A whole twenty-two days later, the publisher went under. (Not because of my story. Dear God, I hope not, anyway. Post Hoc does not Ergo Propter Hoc, remember.) See me sad-facing.

At that time I vowed the story would find another home.

Then I promptly forgot about it. Continue reading The Crosstown Kid… No Longer Homeless!

How We Can All Be More Confident Artists


If I know one thing that plagues all creatives it’s self-doubt.

We all know self-doubt sabotages our efforts: it makes us reluctant to press Publish, or fire off a submission, or introduce a new riff to the band, or really go for it in a live performance.

It makes us stand quietly at the edge of the room trying our darndest to blend in with the wallpaper, when we should be in the middle of the room shaking hands with that talent agent or publisher or record producer.

But self-doubt operates in another, more insidious, way: it affects the quality of the work itself. Continue reading How We Can All Be More Confident Artists