I also do a considerable amount of non-fiction writing, both in print and online. Here’s a whirlwind tour of my blog posts and magazine articles about writing craft, genetics research, and my hobbies.
Science and Science Fiction
My weekly blog series Science in Sci-fi, Fact in Fantasy tackles scientific, medical, and technical aspects of SFF writing with help from an expert in the field. My contributed posts include:
- Genetics myths in fiction writing
- Mutation myths in fiction
- 10 things authors don’t know about the woods
- Medieval versus modern archery
I’ve also written non-fiction articles related to my research background for a few magazines:
|Genetics Advice for Generation Starships
Baen Books website, February 2019.
If you’re writing about a generation starship or (even better) building one, here are some tips from a human geneticist.
|Chimeras: science and science fiction
Baen Books website, 2017.
Human-animal chimeras have pervaded folklore and myth for centuries. The actual science is closer than you might think.
|When Sci-fi Movies Get Mutation and Evolution Wrong
Outer Places, October 2017.
My second column for OP compares modern genetics to the predictions of seminal sci-fi works. See also my interview on Okja and genetics.
|How SF predicted the future of genetics
Outer Places, September 2017.
My first column for OP compares modern genetics to the predictions of seminal sci-fi works. See also my interview on Okja and genetics.
|Dark matter of the human genome
Baen Books website, October 2016.
Less than 2% of the genome makes proteins. I discuss what we currently know about the other 98%.
|Eye-based paternity testing and other human genetics myths
Apex Magazine, issue 72.
I debunk common misconceptions about human genetics and inheritance of traits.
|The Near Future of Human Genome Engineering
Baen Books website, January 2016.
A discussion of the emerging techniques for human genome engineering and how they match up to science fiction.
|7 things to know about mutations
Fantasy Scroll Magazine, issue 7
I provide an overview of mutations, how they occur, and what they can do, aimed at SF/F audiences.
|A whirlwind tour of the human genome
Fantasy Scroll Magazine, issue 8
I provide a quick top-down overview of the human genome, its size, and what we know about the elements it contains.
|The Next Generation of DNA Sequencing
Clarkesworld Magazine, issue 108
I discuss the revolutionary changes in DNA sequencing technologies and how we can use them to improve human health.
|Seeing Is Believing
Front Line Genomics, issue 4
I compare and contrast two forms of inherited blindness: retinitis pigmentosa and age-related macular degeneration.
As a research scientist working in the field of genetics, I have co-authored more than 60 publications in Nature, Cell, The New England Journal of Medicine, Genome Research, and other journals. My research interests include:
- Methods and analytical approaches for next-generation DNA sequencing data
- Cancer genomics, particularly for breast, ovarian, and prostate tumors.
- Rare Mendelian diseases, particularly inherited disorders like retinitis pigmentosa
- The genetic architecture of common diseases, such as macular degeneration and heart disease.
From 2008-2018, I maintained a blog, MassGenomics, where I write about my work and next-generation DNA sequencing’s impact on biomedical research. In 2018, I moved to a major children’s hospital, and started KidsGenomics, a new blog about rare diseases that affect children.
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