Welcome to the Insecure Writer’s Support Group!  If you’re a writer, and if you feel in anyway insecure about your writing life, click here to learn more about this awesome group!

So what am I feeling insecure about this month?  Well, I’m doing the A to Z Challenge.  To be honest, I’m not too worried about finishing it.  I’ve done A to Z before, and this year I feel like I’m well prepared for what’s coming.

But I do feel insecure about the theme I picked: astrobiology, one of the newest and awesome-est branches of science.  But here’s the thing: I’m no astrobiologist. I’m no scientist.  What authority do I have to talk about this stuff?

You see there’s a lot of misinformation out there about the search for alien life.  A lot of the actual science gets misreported in the popular press or coopted as “proof” by U.F.O. conspiracy theorists.  So I really, really, really do not want to spread any of that misinformation around.

Recently, I saw something that kind of surprised me: a bunch of well respected educational channels on YouTube have posted videos admitting their mistakes and promising to do better in the future. This one from Adam Ruins Everything is my favorite.

I don’t have the kind of research team behind me that Adam Ruins Everything has, or that Kurzgesagt has, or that SciShow has.  It’s just me.  I do a lot of reading, and I fact check myself as best I can; but even so, you probably shouldn’t trust everything you read on this blog.

But you can trust this: I love space, and I love science. I think the reality of our universe, as revealed to us by science, is way more interesting than anything our human imaginations might dream up.  And I’m really excited to share all the cool science stuff I’ve learned with you.

At the same time, I’m also eager to keep learning.  So if I make a mistake, or if there’s some important point you think I’ve missed, or some perspective you feel I’m overlooking, I absolutely do want to talk about that in the comments.

And now, I have more A to Z Challenge stuff to work on. In today’s A to Z post, C is for carbon chauvinism.

11 responses »

  1. I’m more likely to trust someone who admits when they’ve made a mistake over someone who doesn’t.

    Liked by 1 person

    • J.S. Pailly says:

      I agree. And for my own purposes, I’m really glad I saw all those videos. They set a good example. I worry a lot about getting sciency stuff wrong on this blog, and it helps to have some good examples of what to do when it happens.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. emaginette says:

    I’m not sure I could stand up and confess to a mistake on YouTube. Someone would have to chase me down and sit on me first. I don’t know if I’m too proud or too embarrassed. hehehe

    Anna from elements of emaginette

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Juneta says:

    Well, if they admit the mistakes then they probably want to know the truth and are not trying to deceive, so those are good points. Happy IWSG!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Kate Rauner says:

    I enjoy Adam Ruins Everything – a TV ahow with footnotes! How cool is that? I wonder why he’s gone to a cartoon version? I was okay with the live action.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lidy says:

    Glad you’re excited about this year’s A to Z. First time hearing about Adams Ruins Everything. The only YouTube shows I know have to do with Fortnite, other streameres and the Onyx kids (can guess I have elemantary to middle school age kids from that).

    Like

  6. CV Grehan says:

    You’re doing a fantastic job with your blog! I do a lot of research, like you, but I couldn’t write about it, like you. Your A-to-Z is about Astrobiology? r e s p e c t. I do know one astrobiology term and perhaps it will be your p-word: Panspermia. I know this because I’ve been working on a series (for a long time.) I’m not hard sci-fi with it, but I did want to apply some logic to how assorted worlds throughout a galaxy might have evolved a humanlike species because, let’s face it, so much more convenient for the writer. 🙂 And don’t we like to explain the impossible… I’ll check in throughout April!

    Liked by 1 person

    • J.S. Pailly says:

      Thank you so much! Research is such an important part of the creative process, I think. And you’re right, I will be doing panspermia. There’s no way I could skip that one. I automatically rejected any other p-words that came up in my research.

      Like

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