Santa Fe Science-Writing Workshop

June 19 to 24, 2004

Santa Fe, New Mexico

Please check back soon for information about the next workshop, June 11 to 16, 2005.

photos by George Johnson

We are now taking applications for the ninth annual Santa Fe Science-Writing Workshop, which will begin Saturday evening, June 19, 2004, and run through Thursday morning, June 24, at Ghost Ranch Santa Fe (formerly Plaza Resolana) in downtown Santa Fe, New Mexico. The workshop is directed by:

Sandra Blakeslee, a New York Times science writer specializing in neuroscience and the author, with V. S. Ramachandran, of Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind and numerous other books, and George Johnson, a New York Times science writer specializing in physics and computer science and the author of A Shortcut Through Time, Strange Beauty, and Fire in the Mind.

This year's other instructors will include

Kenneth Chang, a science reporter for the New York Times, covering chemistry, geology, solid state physics, nanotechnology, and other topics,

Glennda Chui, science writer for the San Jose Mercury News, and

Peter Petre, senior editor-at-large for Fortune magazine, overseeing coverage of infotech, biotech, medicine, industrial technology, and science.

Cornelia Dean, former science editor of the New York Times, also plans to join us to meet students and give a presentation or two.

Please bookmark this page and check back regularly for updates.

Read about last year's workshop.

Latest updates.


How to apply.


Pictures from 2003 by Peter West.

Pictures from 2002 by Robert Burns.

Daily schedule and class list.

Santa Fe Canyon Web cam.

Previous workshops have each attracted about 40 students from all over the country (and a few from Canada, France, Britain, and Kenya). Some were working science writers who wanted to hone their skills and meet more of their colleagues. Some were writers from other fields hoping to make the switch to science writing. Some were public information specialists from universities and government laboratories. And some were scientists who wondered if they might like writing more than research.

Past instructors have included Keay Davidson, science writer for The San Francisco Chronicle and author of Carl Sagan: A Life, Erica Goode, behavioral science writer for The New York Times, Margaret Wertheim, author of The Pearly Gates of Cyberspace and a freelance science writer for numerous publications like New Scientist, Salon, and The Sciences, Robin Marantz Henig, a free-lance magazine writer specializing in the life sciences and the author of The Monk in the Garden, Rosie Mestel, a medical writer and columnist for The Los Angeles Times, Andrew Revkin, environmental writer for The New York Times and author of The Burning Season, Deborah Blum, a Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer and University of Wisconsin journalism professor, Shannon Brownlee, a former senior writer at U.S. News & World Report, Philip Elmer-DeWitt, assistant managing editor in charge of science, medicine, and technology coverage for Time magazine, Dr. Lawrence K. Altman, chief medical correspondent for The New York Times, K.C. Cole of The Los Angeles Times, Joe Palca of National Public Radio, Pulitzer-prize-winner John Noble Wilford of the The New York Times, Laurie Garrett, Pulitzer-prize-winning reporter for Newsday, Richard Harris, Peabody-Award-winning science reporter for National Public Radio, Dennis Overbye, deputy science editor for The New York Times and author of Lonely Hearts of the Cosmos, Rick Weiss, science writer for The Washington Post, Natalie Angier, science correspondent for The New York Times and winner of the Pulitzer prize, Jon Franklin, two-time Pulitzer prize winner and professor of creative writing at the University of Oregon, Michael Lemonick, science writer for Time magazine, Paul Hoffman, former editor-in-chief of Discover magazine, Cornelia Dean, science editor of The New York Times, and Timothy Ferris, author of The Whole Shebang: A State of the Universe(s) Report and Coming of Age in the Milky Way.

Please burrow into our Web site and see what we did in 2003, 2002, 2001, 2000, 1999, 1998, 1997, and 1996. You can also read comments from people who attended previous workshops. Ghost Ranch Santa Fe and The Santa Fe Science Writing Workshop are nonprofit organizations.

reading about superstring theory at Bandelier National Monument

(The background image on our main page is from a Social Realist mural inside the administration building at Highlands University in Las Vegas, New Mexico. It was painted in the 1930s as part of the WPA or "New Deal" Art Project by an artist named Lloyd Moylan.)

George Johnson's Home Page.

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