Who are you?

I'm James Gaines. I was born in Texas, grew up in a cabin in the woods, and once had a pet alligator snapping turtle for about two hours. I'm currently living in Seattle, where I meander aimlessly around the neighborhood and make up fiction about Bronze Age civilizations.

What do you do for work?

I'm a freelance science writer, journalist, and fact-checker! I have a Bachelors in Biology from the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington and eventually found my way over to England, where I got a Master's in Science Journalism from City University, London.

Why science journalism?

I feel like life is, at its heart, about trying to figure out your place in the world. Science can answer quite a lot of that – what is that thing? Is it alive? Does it want to eat me? But you need the rest of the story too. The human part. Science writing and journalism is where I feel those two parts meet.

Where can I see some of your work?

My writing has appeared in outlets such as Atlas Obscura, CityLab, The Guardian, Inside Science, Nature, The Seattle Times, Undark, and Upworthy and has been republished in The Atlantic, Mother Jones, and Smithsonian Magazine. I’ve also written scripts for SciShow and fact-checked for Discover Magazine and Pacific Standard. You can see some of my clips below!