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Seminar: Learning about Science Writing. May 15, 2010

science-writing2Date: Sat., May 15, 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Location: Smithsonian Institution, S. Dillon Ripley Center, 1100 Jefferson Drive, SW, Washington, DC. Cost:  $85 Smithsonian members, $75 senior members, $120, general public.

Science Writing: From Eureka Moment to Digital Publishing: an All-day Seminar

Co-sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution and the Science-Medical Writing, Concentration of the Master of Arts in Writing Program, Johns Hopkins University

From cells to stars, from evolution to swine flu, writing about diverse and complex scientific topics is an engaging, challenging endeavor requiring special skills. Today, well-known practitioners discuss how to find ideas, develop essential skills, and thrive in the digital age. Their ideas resonate with people currently working in the science or medical fields, writers who want to re-direct their work toward science or medicine, or anyone interested in how scientific information is communicated to the public.

9:30 to 10:45 a.m. Getting Started

Challenges of science writing. How to target audiences and choose an area of concentration. Ann Finkbeiner, writer, columnist, critic, and director of the Master of Arts in Science Writing Program at Johns Hopkins University; Chris Mooney, author and Knight Science Journalism Fellow at MIT; Nancy Shute, contributing editor and blogger for U.S. News & World Report and vice president of the National Association of Science Writers.

11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Finding and Developing Ideas

Writing about advances in science and medicine, science policy, and the scientists themselves. Chris Mooney.

12:15 to 1:15 p.m. Lunch — Participants provide their own lunch.

1:15 to 2:30 p.m. Five Essential Skills of Science Writing

Explaining, storytelling, profiling people, establishing perspective, and using creative language. Jon Hamilton, correspondent, National Public Radio.

2:45 to 3:30 p.m. Digital Tools and Techniques

Succeeding in the online and multimedia world. Carl Zimmer, freelance writer for the New York Times, National Geographic, Scientific American, and the blog The Loom.

3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Advice from the Pros

Jon Hamilton, Nancy Shute, and Carl Zimmer give practical advice and answer questions.

The seminar is moderated by Nancy Shute.

To purchase tickets online, visit the Website.

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