Publishing and the Advancement of Science

From Selfish Genes to Galileo's Finger

Publishing and the Advancement of Science

Popular science books, selling in their thousands — even millions — help us appreciate breakthroughs in understanding the natural world, while highlighting the cultural importance of scientific knowledge. Textbooks bring these same advances to students; the scientists of tomorrow. But how do these books come about? And why are some of them so spectacularly successful? This is the first ever insider's account of science publishing, written by an editor intimately involved in the publication of some of the most famous bestsellers in the field. Michael Rodgers reveals the stories behind these extraordinary books, providing a behind-the-scenes view of the world of books, authors and ideas. These vivid and engaging narratives illuminate not only the challenges of writing about science, but also how publishing itself works and the creative collaboration between authors and editors that lies at its heart. The book (like many of those it describes) is intended for a wide readership. It will interest people in publishing, past and present, and also academics and students on publishing courses. Scientists exploring territories outside their own speciality will enjoy it, while there is invaluable advice for those planning their first popular book or textbook. It will also appeal to readers with a humanities background who, finding the concepts of science intriguing, want to know more about how they are developed and communicated. Contents:Foreword (Richard Dawkins)PrologueHawking, Einstein, and Popular ScienceDiscovering the World of Science and ScientistsFalling Under the Spell of the Selfish GeneThe Origins and Evolution of the College Science Textbook, and the Birth of a SuperstarA Companion to the Mind, and Science in the Vegetable Gardenr- and K-Selection, and the Extended PhenotypeThe Blind Watchmaker, and the Universe in Twenty ObjectsBill Hamilton and John Maynard Smith: Working with Two Giants of Evolutionary BiologyThe Best Textbook of Organic Chemistry I Ever Hold in My HandsScientific Anecdotes, the Ten Great Ideas of Science, ‘Science Writing at Its Best’EpilogueNotes and ReferencesIndex Readership: The general public and students who are interested in the relationship between science and publishing. Key Features:This is the first book to tell the stories behind the publishing of some key science books that became world-famous bestsellers: stories that are fascinating, providing a genuinely exhilarating read. Some of these are stories that have become important pieces of publishing historyContains practical advice for scientists contemplating writing themselves, either a popular science book or a textbook. This advice is communicated indirectly in the context of real books, not directly as in a manualThis book contains a Foreword writer Richard Dawkins together with the stories behind the writing and the publishing of several of his famous booksKeywords:Popular Science;Popularization of Science;Public Understanding of Science;Book Publishing;History of Book Publishing;History of ScienceReviews:“It is a useful source on what life used to be like in the world of serious people working to help serve serious readers, and sometimes succeeding beyond their expectations.”The Times Higher Education “This book is a helpful guide for academic authors who are poised to send a proposal to a publisher.”The Observatory Magazine “This book is unique. There are now university courses on publishing and Rodgers' book will no doubt be required reading, but it deserves a wider audience by virtue of the human interest stories, which he tells.”Chemistry & Industry “Rodgers breathes life into his reminiscences, which carry the reader along. His account offers some interesting glimpses into a little-seen world, which might inspire budding writers to start their own bestsellers.” Chemistry World “Those interested in the world of publishing, with a special interest in science, will find much to like about this book.” CERN Courier

Issues in Biological and Life Sciences Research: 2011 Edition

Issues in Biological and Life Sciences Research: 2011 Edition

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