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Story Collider: Is This Biology?


In October 2015, I appeared with Story Collider to talk about porcupines, Satan worshippers, and biology.

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Story Collider: The Biology of Pig Shit



In early 2016 I tell a story onstage about the chemistry of pig manure.
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Nieman Storyboard: “Scientists are quirky everywhere”

for Nieman Storyboard
Published: December 2015


Biologist-turned-journalist Erik Vance on incorporating science into narrative stories
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NASW Science in Society Winner, 2015



For the Discover magazine feature "Why Nothing Works"
Copyright Dominic Bracco II

Feeding the Billions

for Scientific American
Published: April 2015


How a small group of visionaries are trying to feed China—and save the world's oceans.
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Manifesto of a Wasp Scientist

for The Last Word on Nothing

All characters in this essay are fictional and should not be confused with real scientists. I ask that no bee researcher take offense.
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Hugh and the Boobies

for Hakai Magazine
Published: April 22, 2015


Like characters in a soap opera, boobies on a remote Mexican island cheat, kill, and jostle for power.
Copyright Dominic Bracco II

An Ocean Apart

for Virginia Quarterly Review
Published: Spring 2015


Can two forces threatening the sustainability of sharks—the fishermen of Mexico and consumers in China—help the fish survive?
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Losing Maya Heritage to Looters

for National Geographic
Published: August 8, 2014


Stolen artifacts are making it from the Guatemalan jungle to wealthy black-market buyers.
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Why Nothing Works

for Discover
Published: July 2014


Once dismissed as a psychological curiosity, the placebo effect is now recognized as the key to the brain’s “inner pharmacy.” If only doctors knew how to open the medicine cabinet.
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Gods of Blood And Stone

for Scientific American
Published: July 2014


Long cloaked in mystery, the ancient Teotihuacán culture is at last giving up its secrets.