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Stalking for fun and profit Brendan

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1 Stalking for fun and profit Brendan Maher @bmahersciwriter

2 Quick disclaimer

3 About Nature features Typically between 2 and 4 pages (1600- 3200 words). In-depth analysis of science, scientists, sci-policy intersections and the scientific process. Strong narrative and vivid characters a story that you read to the end without meaning to.

4 Stalk your stories

5 About Nature features Nature 475, 156-158 (2011)

6 Twila Brase It is difficult to write her off as a conspiracy theorist: she simply doesn't sound like one, even when, 4.5 minutes into making the case against screening, she suggests that "some researchers" might be trying to convince the state to test day- old infants for genes linked to "a tendency towards violence".

7 The Pitch Privacy Versus Progress: Taking Sides Over Newborn Screening Twila Brase is not glamorous or, in most circles, famous. Until recently, she was an unassuming nurse from Minnesota; currently, she works for less than $50,000 running a small non-profit out of a dreary office in St. Paul. … For most of the last two years she has focused on various policy issues related to health-care reform, but recently, she turned her attention to newborn screening and biobanking, arguing that parents weren't being adequately consented and that their children's DNA samples (technically, their bloodspots) were being more or less secretly kept on file by the government.

8 Pitching like a stalker Obsess about your subject Find the angle that the outlet will care about Make it read like a story that you want to read (and write) Identify the tension point Make it easy for the editor to get it

9 Stalk your editor What they post is what they are proud of, excited by Everyone loves compliments; especially insightful ones Make them take notice of the quality of your ideas

10 Warning: they may stalk you back

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