Earthquakes and Supermoons

Originally, I had planned an entirely different blog post for this week, something that had nothing to do with science, but sometimes life can change at the drop of a hat.

On November 14, 2016 at 12:02 am (New Zealand Time), an 7.5-magnitude earthquake struck 15 km north-east of Culverden. The coastal town of Kaikoura has been devastated, effectively cut off from any help, but they are not alone. The entire country felt this.

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Removing the twinkle of stars

This month on Conversations in Science, I spoke about something a little more closer to home. I had fun going back to my PhD roots and spoke about what I had spent nearly eight years of my life researching: how one can remove the twinkle from stars.


Twinkle Twinkle Little Star... Not!
(First Aired on KLRNRadio, Monday, November 7, 2016)

When I was studying for my PhD, it was a little inside joke between my supervisors and myself. Whenever anyone asked what it was we did for a living, we would answer, "We remove the twinkle from stars." The reactions were hilarious. Most people would see it for the joke it was, but there would always be the one person who would get incredibly offended.

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NaNoWriMo: It’s begun

nanowrimo_2016_webbanner_participant

Here we are again: November. And here I go, setting myself another NaNoWriMo challenge.

For those that don’t know, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. It’s really international, because it’s an event where writers from around the world commit to writing a novel in the span of one month. To win, you need to write a minimum of 50,000 words.Read More

Serious Politics…

My family and friends know that I never watch the news, rarely read a newspaper, and ever since the radio died in my car, I don’t even get my news that way. No, all my knowledge of current events comes from word of mouth and the bombardment of various snippets on social media. Even my own children know more about what’s going on in the world than I do. However, there are some things that there is just no getting away from. Let’s just say that I would have to completely disconnect from the world to get away from the political stage of the USA.Read More

There is no such thing as an aspiring writer…

There is a term that I have seen bandied around in the bios of various writers, and it’s a term that I don’t like: aspiring writer.

What I don’t understand is how one can aspire to be a writer. You can aspire to be an author. You can aspire to quit your day job to become a full-time writer. You can aspire to share your writing with the world. But aspire to be a writer?Read More