Surendra Verma

Writer, editor, journalist and author (and a natural-born sceptic) / Melbourne, Australia

Twitter: @scepticscribe

Based in Melbourne, Australia since 1970; and before that in Perth, Australia; and before Australia many years in Dehradun, a picturesque town (at least, when I lived there) in the foothills of Himalayas.

Over Sixty Continuous Years of Science Writing

13 May 1956 – Till Now …

My first piece as a freelance science writer – a short article on optical illusion – was published in a national weekly on 13 May 1956 when I had just turned 14.

Since then I have been writing regularly on matters related to science, technology, environment and health right through my high school and college days to this day. So far, I have published 1000+ non-technical general-interest articles in major national and international newspapers and magazines; and 20+ popular-science books (internationally in many English editions and in 13 languages other than English). Not even bothering to count numerous brochures and booklets I wrote for corporate clients.

For some 45 years of this period I was in full-time demanding jobs (mostly in journalism and publishing, some of these jobs also involved writing) but that didn’t stop me moonlighting as a freelance science writer. Science writing has never been my profession, only a hobby. A highly satisfying one, I must say.

Although during my long solo journey as a freelance science writer I have used a vast array of tools – pens (fountain and ball points), manual typewriters (desktops and portables), electric typewriters (ordinary ones to fancy daisy wheel and golf ball ones), desktop computers (with dot matrix, ink jet and laser printers; and with BSB and emails), heavy laptops and tiny notebooks, iPads and iPhones – the basic tools have always been the same throughout this period: a curious mind and resilience.

Recent Achievements

  • November 2004: $15,000 literature grant by the Literature Board of the Australia Council for the Arts for writing creative nonfiction
  • June 2007: Honorary Life Member of the Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance, the association representing Australian journalists – for contribution to journalism in Australia
  • November 2007: $25,000 literature grant by the Literature Board of the Australia Council for the Arts for writing creative nonfiction

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