Update from the land of networking

Nearly a month has passed since I last posted, and at least my excuses are legit–we moved house, then ran off to Scotland and Wales respectively, with a visit from a friend in between. Somehow I’ve managed to stay in contact with a number of people and plans for the launch of Darwin’s Microscope (coming out in Feb by Flambard Press) are coming together very nicely. While some of the events strike me as fuzzily distant in the future, I know they’ll be upon me next time I look over my shoulder.

One project I’m launching into in the next few months is a two-part paper for the Outreach & Education Committee (OEC) in Cambridge of the British Society for the History of Science (BSHS), describing my personal experiences approaching the public with a history of science-related topic (ie, Darwin). It isn’t meant to be research-y or massively dense; rather something educators might read and take some advice from. This will be a great incentive for me to articulate a lot of what I’ve encountered since the creation of this book, and I think the second part, which I will write after many of the other events (which are to happen in 2009) will be particularly interesting.

The Cambridge Science and Literature Reading Group will be starting up again, and I’m hoping to attend it more fully than last term (which I missed entirely, as I was abroad)! It’s a bit of a trip from London but well worth it. The group posts readings online which members are meant to read before the meeting, and then we meet up and discuss. The selection is always interesting & educational, and the group attracts a variety of experts, from quantum physicists to historians to education experts to writers, so it is a great way to share ideas about literature & science. We also meet in Darwin College; how could I not love that?

Brilliant news for April 2009: my alma mater, Randolph-Macon Woman’s College, (now Randolph College,) is sponsoring me for a week-long visit in April 2008. I’ll be there the week of the 6th, speaking in classes as well as on an alumnae panel, and doing a book reading & signing. Further details are to be arranged, but it looks like I’ll be covering all aspects of my interests by speaking in Creative Writing, Literature, Biology & Environmental Studies courses. It will be my first trip back to campus since graduating in May 2007–nearly two years. I remember deciding not to return until I was published, and so it is. It will be wonderful to see my friends & professors again.

halls of residence

halls of residence

The book proofs for Darwin’s Microscope arrived about a week ago! It looks great. I’ll make a few changes, but nothing major. It really is wonderful to see the manuscript laid out as it will be in book form–making this whole experience seem much more real, somehow, though the idea of holding the book in hand in Feb still makes me grin, and I find it hard to believe. That said, I feel a great pressure from myself to work on the next book, which has been brewing in the back of my mind for awhile now. In fact, I think I’ll go do that…

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